A year on, a chance to see how a craft teapot stall fared.
Sales in the tourist months haven’t been too shabby.
Yet – seemingly inspired by the local currency tanking – many peers report 25% year-on-year upshoots.
The landlord recommended dropping prices. What a surprise. I never jump to advocate such a policy.
Know about the good old Birmingham Screwdriver? Think Maslow’s Hammer;
“I suppose it is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail.”
Where the rent-collector is fixated on the only thing they ‘know’, price tags, I gravitate towards Sales skill.
There are plenty of possible variables at play.
Location, Merchandising, Presentation, Packages, Range Tightening, Product Mix.
I learned that a group of browsers automatically offered but half immediately upon hearing price first time.
Oh the ego of barter.
My favourite response was;
“Sjoe, which half would you like?”
I proffered a quintet of quick selling tweaks.
Justify Difference Alone
There are three levels of price. Each according to the amount of craftsmanship and time required.
Nearly every time people enquire about the top of the ranges. Your job selling then is not to justify the full price. But the price difference between that and the entry-points.
We ran through the many facets that go to make this happen.
Next, the client visualisation I mentioned last year must sharpen. I felt this wasn’t happening. Probably due to the perception that many shoppers revealed themselves as collectors. Knowing the most likely response in advance does not negate the importance of the question. For it is the answer that uncovers true desires and begins to build that precious relationship.
“Where will she sit in your home..?”
Still a winner.
Thirdly, and also another way to deploy that most vital of sales words; which. It was the belief that buyers tended to take the teapot that first struck them. So when they’re looking at the whole array, simply ask them;
“Which lady jumps out for you?”
And off you go.
The range was busy being decluttered. Small priced distracting accessories were placed into packages with matching teapots. A caddy service and tea-sets were now an extra option. One such delicious question enabled being;
“Would you like the set or a single pot?”
I re-iterated the importance of a one-off outrageously expensive item. This required work on the product development front and might take a while. Menu Engineering term these decoys. They are something significantly dearer on offer. Its purpose is to make the lesser priced seem more reasonable.
In this case, the artist herself instantly thought of a way to produce just such a pot. Positioned 40% higher.
As a Sales Management extra, there is the need to reinforce and monitor progress.
The absolute starting point cannot be ‘…how many sales we make today then?’
It must support and drive the process.
How many conversations did we have?
Which ladies stood out today?
Where would they get placed?
Who asked about prices? (I laboured the point that you only ever present the price if asked for it)
What was the reaction to the sets?