Lessons Learned from Retail

I started my first-ever retail job about five weeks ago at the Salomon store. Salomon is a high-end European brand that caters to skiers, snowboarders, runners and other active types. Although Salomon is famous for its skiing equipment, our store only carries shoes and apparel. I got my baptism-by-fire experience when I entered the store on my second official day, which happened to be Black Friday…

I spent hours running back and forth from the backroom to the floor; attempting to answer questions about products that were unfamiliar to me at that point. It was a rough day, but things have gotten a lot better since. I’m honestly loving my stint in retail! Here is what I’ve learned in my time with Salomon so far:

-“I’m just looking” is something that everyone says, even people who are planning to buy! You have to get creative in order to figure out what customers want.

-Offering alternatives can be a great way to show customers that you care about their needs. People like having options, especially when they are paying a pretty penny for high-end products.

-There are people who come into our store, spend an hour plus with a sales associate, try on like 13 different items and leave totally empty handed. It’s rough, but it’s retail!

-Product knowledge is important! But if you’re like me (i.e., bad at remembering random stats and facts), asking lots of questions to uncover customers’ needs is a good way to show people that you’re trying to serve them effectively.

-It’s important to treat everyone with respect. This should go without saying, but hey, I’ll leave it in this list just in case 🙂


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