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Two Minute Tips

Non-negotiables – Secrets to sales success

The most successful retailers outline and set standards for customer service, which are non-negotiable with staff. It’s about being better than your competitors and your store staying top-of-mind with the customer.
  • Non-negotiables are standards that you set up to expect every time a customer walks in your door
  • These are actions that you do or say that set you apart from your competitors and make your store unique
  • Non-negotiables keep your store top-of-mind with the customer. They cause things like referrals and social media mentions
  • You and your staff all need to agree that you will do these every day with every customer
  • You need to hold each other accountable to adherence to the standards
  • Make a list of suggestions from your staff and vote on them, paring it down to just two; two suggestions is a manageable number for change that can be achieved in one week
  • Have fun creating your own unique, non-negotiables


“Thank you for calling Gerard Automotive, this is Tina, how can I make your day?”

I tell Tina that I’d like to schedule an oil change. And she replies, “It would be my pleasure!”

Whenever they say that, I just get a little happier inside knowing that it would be somebody’s pleasure to solve my little problem. Gerard Automotive’s response to my mundane, day-in day-out phone call gave me a little joy.

And so I remember them… and keep calling them.

This is a perfect example of a non-negotiable, which is done every day, for every customer. They help staff be more professional and memorable and cause customers to remember us for doing something different.

I’m not talking about turning your people into robots that give the same response to every single customer, I’m talking about individualising a common statement or procedure that is different from every other jewellery store in the world.

Some great jewellery store non-negotiable examples I’ve seen are as follows:

  • Every repair is delivered laid out on a nice sales tray with a chocolate, not removed from a plastic envelope
  • On entering your store, every customer is greeted within a certain time frame, say 5-10 seconds
  • Every customer is greeted on the customer’s side of the counter
  • Every sale is followed up with a “thank you” of some sort

These are just a few examples, but when we have great non-negotiables and stick by them, we create an environment of excellence and customers fall in love with the experience. And better still, they tell their friends. Isn’t that the best advertising!


James De Groot

Contributor • Jewellery Marketing Guy

Jimmy’s passion is to share his sales and marketing techniques from when he managed a jewellery store and tripled sales with almost no staff turnover. He has now taken his knowledge worldwide by offering instore consulting and training with a series of “weekly store meeting” videos tailored for your entire team. Visit jewelrymarketingguy.com

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