Every furniture store carries the same or very similar home furnishings products. Not only that, they typically present very similar “unique selling points”; family owned, lowest prices, best selection, and so forth. Unfortunately, offering similar products and touting similar selling points places you in a price war with your competition. Price wars are messy, discouraging, and fraught with thin margins that lead to thin hair.
You can pull out of the war and become the favorite store in which customers want to shop by ensuring that the product you sell is secondary to the service you provide. You differentiate yourself from your competitors – not by your years of business and low cost – but by your professionalism, helpfulness and overall experience value.
Customers want to buy furniture, electronics, mattresses and appliances in a brick and mortar store where they can handle the product before they buy, and more importantly, where they can be helped by a knowledgeable salesperson. It’s likely they’ve done extensive research via the internet but they want validation and consultation from a human being with whom they can talk and trust. So it’s important that each of your sales people knows and follows the steps of the sales process, especially in regards to asking discovery questions and listening to responses. Its equally important that they are product knowledge experts who can confidently match customer needs with the products you carry.
The store that truly prepares its staff to respond to their customer’s need for trustworthy and knowledgeable help will be the store that wins not only the price war, but every other war and skirmish that is sure to arise in retail sales.