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Articles from DIAMONDS BY CUT - BRILLIANT (ROUND) (285 Articles), EDUCATION / TRAINING (185 Articles), BUYING GROUPS (84 Articles)

Shane Decker: 'Jewellers need more sales training.'
Shane Decker: 'Jewellers need more sales training.'

Jewellery retailers need more training

Although impressed with the quality of jewellery stores in Australia, US sales expert Shane Decker was shocked at the lack of training of retail staff. He says retailers have a lot to learn if they want to increase sales and profitability.
Visiting Australia for the first time, Decker was invited to attend the International Jewellery Fair by Nationwide Jewellers as part of its 20th Anniversary celebrations.

When asked about the difference between local stores and the US, Decker noted that there was a lack of weekly sales meetings in Australia. He was quick to point out that “sales people in the US have sales goals to hit every month and that if they didn’t hit them, they would get terminated.”

“They make more money in the US but their sales people write $500,000 to $1million a year by themselves. That’s more than some stores do [in annual turnover] down here,” Decker said.

As one of the leading sales experts in the US and president of Decker Sales Academy, Decker believes that there is a “lack of accountability” in Australian stores.

“Its not that they don’t hire good people but there’s no absolute [check] list for sales staff with basic things like keeping sweet spots covered, the 5-second rule in greeting customers and getting email addresses for future reference.”

When comparing the management of Australian jewellery stores to US counterparts, Decker also said there was greater need for more regular and structured sales meetings.

He says that there are five types of sales meetings: product knowledge, gemological, salesmanship, store procedure and store culture – which are all essential to being profitable.

He added that US stores expect sales staff to undertake GIA studies, attend sales meetings, work their client lists and follow up on customer’s birthdays and anniversaries.

Sales staff should have a simple list of customer rules like trying for an add-on with every sale or to ‘wow’ customers before they leave the store.

Decker presented a range of sales seminars for Nationwide Jewellers’ including a three-hour presentation titled: ‘Anatomy of a diamond sale’.

Decker also made reference at his sales seminars on the need to have proper inventory control and advised Australian retailers not to have a “poverty mentality that it costs a lot to have inventory” as this was a major sales killer.

“We live in a very impatient society so if you do not have a particular product, clients will go elsewhere. You’ve got to have it to sell it.”

He hopes to revisit Australia next year to conduct a larger and wider range of sales training seminars for independent jewellery store owners and managers.

Peter W Beck

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