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Old 11th June 2008, 09:53 AM   #1

Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: NC
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Default Turning Browsers Into Buyers

We have a group of 'browsers' that are almost impossible to sell to. These are moms with small children that come into our pet store as an 'outing' with no intention to buy. We see dozens of these moms and kids every day and almost never make a sale to them. It has occurred to me that stay at home moms don't have a lot of extra cash so they may never buy, but I'm looking for ideas that may appeal to this group.

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Old 11th June 2008, 11:17 AM   #2
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Old 11th June 2008, 03:02 PM   #3

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Moms w/ small tots are always looking for FREE outings for their little ones and what better place than a pet shop. I remember those days when my kids were small.

You have a great market that can become loyal future customers if you cultivate that natural love for animals that children have.

Have scheduled workshops in your store where you teach groups of children about good pet care. Introduce different types of animals that your shop sells. Discuss the features and benefits of owning that particular pet. What better way to have children insist AFTER they have left your store that they need a pet? And you know how persistent they can be.

Offer classes on obedience training where you charge a fee. This can be for the older sibs and parents.

Have older children volunteer to work in your store for certain hours. You get free help and a loyal customer base.

I think you'd be surprised at how much money SAHM's actually have; they just want to spend it where they find value.

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Old 11th June 2008, 04:58 PM   #4
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Start with an inexpensive giveaway item or promotion that you give when someone fills out a form with, at the very least, their email address. Then keep constant contact with them via direct marketing.

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Old 11th June 2008, 05:58 PM   #5

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Great ideas! Thanks so much.

I have a couple of schoolteachers on staff for the summer and I'll see what they think about helping me set up some workshops.

Back in early spring when love was in the air we wound up with about 40 more hamsters than we needed and we offered them to moms free. It keeps them coming back for food and bedding, and we sold a few cages although most either had a cage or old aquarium at home to house them in. We didn't advertise them, we just offered them to moms while the kids were admiring them and it was a big hit. I'll see what else I can find to give away that may stimulate a sale.

I'm afraid to have kids in the store without parents to supervise. Little things like cat scratches really upset some parents and it's bound to happen when you mix unsupervised kids with animals, but animal care classes for older children and workshops for the little ones might work out.

Thanks for all the ideas! I'll let you know how things develop.

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Old 11th July 2008, 10:43 PM   #6
Skip Anderson

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I understand the frustration, but if you take on an extraordinarily welcoming attitude, over time, it will impact your sales. Encourage browsers. Welcome them. Make them feel comfortable. Engage them in conversation. Talk to the kids. Give them goodies. The more your place has a positive feel, the better.


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Old 29th October 2008, 12:55 AM   #7

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Threads a bit old but I'd like to ad some experiences in here.

I also have worked at many pet stores, mainly fish oriented. The worst thing someone could do to a browser is either ignore them, or just say hi. Most browsers, in my experience, are just shy and afraid to ask for help or ask questions.

I greet them with a friendly "Hello, how are you doing today?". It gets them talking. Normally followed by "My name is *insert name*, is there anything I can do to help you?" or something of that sort. 9 times out of 10, I get a question as a response from the customer. More often than not, I sell something. I just try not to be like some employees at larger stores that swarm on someone and always peaking around the corner at them, that's annoying and a good way to bust a sale. Whether it be a $0.59 air stone or a $1000 tank setup, I may have just made a customer for many years to come.

Now it doesn't always work and that is expected. But for the most part I think a friendly attitude and showing concern for the customer will get you a lot of future business.

Great idea with the hamsters. I've seen similar things done with toads, rabbits, extra aquariums, etc. It really gets people in the hobby. If it costs you $2-$5 to get a customer that spends that amount each week, seems worth it to me!

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Old 26th November 2008, 01:32 PM   #8
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Moms that has no jobs at all and with little kids has no cash to spend that are not included in their budgets. The next time they visit your store, try to ask them what they need and what they expect to see in your store.

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