You took out a big loan to open your business; maybe even got a second mortgage on your home. Then, product and supplies were ordered on credit cards. You even convinced your spouse and kids to work there because there’s no money left for payroll. But you opened a “business of no”.
What do I mean by that?
Well, you’re so concerned about what you DON’T want in your store that you lost focus on what you DO want – loyal repeat customers. But you won’t get them THIS way!
You want or expect, every customer to treat your store as the jewel you believe it is. They can’t eat or smoke in the store – that’s understandable. You also thought it was a good idea to display the rest of your rules and regulations on your storefront window.
To be a shopper in your store, here’s what you expect:
Running, Pets, Bikes,
Skateboards, Bare feet, Soliciting
Entrance without a shirt
The worst part is, your “window of no” is the first thing someone sees as they pass by your store! Is that the message you want to send to potential customers?
How do you expect to be successful if your sign turns away business because they don’t fit the mold of what you want in your store?
Besides, have you had so many instances where these things became such a detriment to your business that you felt compelled to list them so prominently? Probably not.
Earn Your Customer’s Respect
Don’t treat them like children with a pre-printed set of rules they must follow just to buy your products. We are here to tend to the needs and wishes of our customer, not the other way around. Respect me and I will respect you.
I need a business to value what’s important to me. Become pet-friendly. If I come into your business with a tiny dog that’s sitting in a carrier or specialized pouch, will you prevent me from entering and spending money? I sure hope not. But, if I enter with a 200-pound St. Bernard, that may be another story (my apologies to the owners of St. Bernards).
Stop Making Assumptions
Come on. How many people will really enter your store on a skateboard? Probably not too many. If someone does, deal with that when it happens – and do so in a professional way. Your big window sign is anything BUT professional.
I look forward to entering a business that’s happy to see me. I’m there to spend money and they want to make money. It’s a win-win for all. But I need to feel special and not like I’ve done something wrong before I even walked in.
Your signage should include words describing how much you value my business and appreciate the opportunity to serve me. Is that too much to ask for?
Also, when a customer enters, they should be warmly greeted and helped right away. A BIG smile is the perfect start to any customer interaction.
With all you have invested in your business and the commitments made by your family, you have too much to risk by making a restrictive policy such a center of attention.
Make the customer your center of attention.