By Camilla Amalie Wildfang Illum von Scholten, Country Manager at OLE LYNGGAARD COPENHAGEN
In luxury jewellery retail the boutique is a destination for style and elegance. Our boutique is a stage, and we are the performers. Our customers are the audience. When the door opens the show begins, and all behind the scenes activities are kept away from the customers to view, as not to interrupt the performance!
My motto for successful service excellence is patience and passion!
In luxury retail serving a customer can be a time-consuming process, and it is important that you have great patience, so that the customer does not feel any rush or stress. Listen to what the customer has to say and ask questions. We want to hear about their kids, grandkids, dogs, see the iPhone photos etc. This is the difference from walking into our store and the stores of big multi international brands. We care and people share their emotions and their life stories with us. Getting to know your customer will help you to guide and to inspire the customer.
The customer can feel your passion for the brand and for the products. The pieces you like the most are also the pieces you will find the easiest to sell.
A few more important points that I have learned:
1. Making the customer feel good and relaxed. You can come a long way with a warm welcome and a smile. We always offer our customers something to drink and a piece of luxury Danish chocolate. It is important that the customer feel at home.
2. Entertain your customer with story telling of the brand or of a unique piece. People don’t only buy the products, they buy the stories and the energy. You need to feed the customer with all the beautiful aspects of the brand.
3. Remember your customers name to make the experience more personal.
4. If it is a tourist you can offer your hospitality guidance to the city; such as museums, restaurants, on-going show etc. Even help to make reservations.
5. Show flexibility and walking the extra mile for your customers makes a difference. By offering a personal delivery if it is inconvenient for the customer to come and collect the piece. Or by following the customer to the car to make them feel safe and to help carry the bags.
6. That little something extra such as, Christmas gifting for VIP customers, hand written birthday cards and wedding anniversary cards.
7. In after sales service, the customer is always right. Don’t be afraid to receive complaints. Always apologize for the inconvenience, show you care, and then take the focus away from the negative by complimenting the customer and focus on new items or story telling. Then educate the customer on how to take care of the product.