For years, retailers have known that selling to women is very different from selling to men; women think differently, they connect differently, they make purchasing decisions differently. Selling to moms-to-be is an even more finely honed skill. Not because of the hormones coursing through their bodies or their need to go to the restroom every 10 minutes. It’s simply that the stakes are higher. A mother isn’t just looking for a great pair of pumps or a new brand of protein bar for herself – she’s on the emotionally invested journey of finding a product that will help her take better care of her child, give her confidence in her parenting decisions, something that gives her the peace of mind she’s done the best for her baby – whether it’s a bouncy seat, room décor, baby food, wardrobe or skincare products. And moms are the customers walking through your door every day!
At Baby Pibu™, we know babies and we know moms – after all, we are moms. We’ve been on both sides of the sales counter, and want to offer just a few customer service and sales advice to help make your job easier!
- Connection, connection, connection: Women typically buy from people they like; a sales person with whom they have made a personal connection. That mommy-to-be in your store needs to both like and trust you, and if she does that, she will most likely buy from you. Everyone knows retail best practices such as greeting your customer as soon as they enter, or walking your customer to the item they want rather than just pointing them in a certain direction. With moms, it’s even more critical. No, you don’t need to hover and offer her a chair immediately, but greet her warmly, inquire as to her needs, find out if she’s shopping for her own family or a friend. Your introduction, opening questions and comments can directly impact whether or not you’ll be closing a sale.
- Brands that sell and why: Maternity and mommy customers are not only interested in the brand name; they want to know why to choose one product over another, what someone liked or didn’t like, a personal experience from someone using the product. It’s critical that your sales people know their brands, products, reviews and just as importantly, feedback and reviews from other customers. Ask almost any mother why she bought her travel system or crib or why she chooses a particular brand of formula or food – you’ll probably find that it was recommended to her by someone she trusts and she probably has other products from that same brand. Know your store, know your brands and know your customers’ trends – this will help you make the most informed and compelling recommendations to that next mommy that visits your store.
- Amateurs versus Professionals: In a maternity store or baby boutique, most of your customers are either new moms-to-be or your experienced mothers who have done this before. Sell differently to each! Your new mom is much more of clean slate; she doesn’t have as much practical experience, so she may have more questions, need more explanation and details, and typically purchase more products. Your experienced, or professional, mom has been around this block before. She knows what worked, what didn’t, what she needs and what she doesn’t. More so than first-time moms, she needs what she needs and she needs it quickly! She probably puts a high price on time and convenience – including the time she is spending in your store. So, ask the right questions, know when it’s time to lose the fluff and cut to the chase. Give her the time and service she deserves but know that in her mind, she’s already five tasks ahead of where she’s standing right now.
These small, but ever so important tips can make a big difference in your customer’s experience. And, as business owner, what’s one of the best things about moms? They LOVE to talk to other moms! So, keep them happy and they’ll sing your praises to everyone they know.
— The Baby Pibu™ Team