Monday, November 2, 2009

Yes They are Price Shopping With Their Phone - It's Okay

The new applications on iPhones allow your customers to scan a bar code on a product on your shelf and get all kinds of information online including the price others are charging for the very same item.

Oh no! Oh, yes. Customers can more easily price shop you than ever before. What are you going to do?

Some stores are banning customers who do this. Don't be one of them.

Allow your customers to use this new app. Embrace the technology. As Bob Phibbs pointed out so well, use it as a means of connection with your customer. Ask them what they found. See if the info is accurate. Chances are, you'll be able to add info to what they find, or at the very least be able to make that info relevant by explaining to the customer what it means.

By all means, however, treat these customers with ultimate kindness and respect.

Sure, many of them are price shoppers, transactional customers, who won't ever be loyal or profitable for your business. But that is no excuse not to kill 'em with kindness.

One thing we know about transactional customers is that they are always big on word of mouth. They love to talk about their shopping experiences.

And when they leave your store, they could be saying, "Wow, what a bunch of overpriced jerks!"

Wouldn't you rather they said, "What a friendly knowledgeable store - expensive - but they really know their stuff,"?

Embrace the new iPhone apps and other programs that allow customers to price shop and get other info on your products. And then recognize that they came to you first. Now give them a reason to buy.

-Phil

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