21 Rules for Excellent Retail Customer Service that we share with the participants in our courses. Most of them are not that hard to follow. However, they can be hard to follow consistently.
If you work with customers in retail, take a look at the list and ask yourself how closely you follow the rules.
1. Smile when greeting a customer in person and on the phone (and yes, they can tell if you are smiling over the telephone!).
2. Use age-appropriate greetings, and avoid referring to older customers and women as "guys."
3. Be proactive and ask how you may be of service.
4. Stay visible and available, but don't hover.
5. Don't turn away, walk away, start to make a phone call, or duck beneath the counter as a customer approaches. (We've all had it happen to us.)
6. The live customer standing in front of you takes precedence over someone who calls on the phone.
7. Never judge a book by its cover--all customers deserve attention regardless of their age or appearance.
8. Leave food and beverages in the break room.
9. A customer doesn't want to hear about your upcoming break.
10. Makes any personal calls when you're on a break and out of earshot.
11. The correct answer is never "I don't know" unless you add to it, "but I can find out for you."
12. If a customer wants something that isn't on display, go to the stock room and try to find it.
13. If the item isn't in the stock room, offer to call another store or order it.
14. Learn to read body language to see if a customer could use some help.
15. Don't let chatty customers monopolize your time if others are waiting.
16. Call for backup support if lines are forming.
17. Be discrete if a customer's credit card is declined by asking if there is another method of payment he or she would like to use.
18. Never discuss customers in front of other customers (they'll wonder what you're saying about them once they leave).
19. Inspect merchandise before bagging it to make sure it's not defective or the wrong size.
20. Make sure customers receive everything they've paid for before they leave your store.
21. Smile as you are saying goodbye and encourage the customer to come again