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6 Types of Customers and How to Convert Them to Buyers (Quick & Easy)

Do you want to be able to turn everyone who walks into your store into a loyal customer?

Of course, you do!

Use our quick and easy tips to increase your sales, decrease the stress of the selling process, and ensure greater customer satisfaction.

Pumped to see the sales flood in? Great. Let’s learn about the 6 different types of customers, what they want, how to keep them happy, and ultimately how to convert them into a loyal buyer.

Converting Customers Who Never Find What They Are Looking For 6 Types of Customers

1. How to Convert a Customer Who NEVER Finds what they’re Looking for

David walks into your store looking for the perfect pair of tennis shoes. He doesn’t know the exact style he wants, but he definitely knows what he doesn’t want. After a few minutes of browsing the inventory on the shelves, he leaves frustrated because you didn’t have the EXACT pair of shoes he was looking for. Even though he doesn’t know exactly what he’s looking for himself.

How to deal with picky customers:

David is obviously a picky customer; he has a general idea of what he wants, and if he doesn’t immediately find it he may leave your store and never return. Picky customers are looking for sympathy. They have been looking for the particular item they want for quite some time with no success and they want to feel like you are on their side. Say things like “Aww man did you strike out again?” or “Today I’m making it my mission to find you the perfect pair of tennis shoes.” Not only does this make them feel like they are no longer alone, it opens up an avenue for conversation for you to find out more about them and what they are looking for.

Close the sale and convert them into a loyal customer:

So how do you give the picky customer what they want if you don’t have the exact thing that they’re looking for? First and foremost, be patient and empathetic. Making a picky customer feel like you’re on their side will go a long way in not only earning their trust but also in closing the sale. In addition to this, you need to be knowledgeable about your products. Be prepared to offer them a similar item from your stock, call your other stores to see if they have the item in stock, or check and see if you are able to order their item for them. Even if you aren’t able to immediately find what the customer is looking for, let them know that you appreciate their input and will look into keeping more of their particular item in stock.

Converting Customer Who Always Has A Coupon 6 Types of Customers

2. How to Convert a Customer Who ALWAYS has a Coupon

Susan comes to the checkout line with a cart full of household items. After the cashier rings up everything, she proceeds to hand off a massive stack of coupons, some of which are expired or not applicable to her items. She puts back a few pieces but refuses to back down no matter how many times the cashier tells her that the store cannot honor her expired coupons. Susan continues to argue and demand a manager as the checkout line backs up. Frustrated, the manager honors the coupon just so he can assist the next customers in line and Susan leaves with a grin knowing she got a good deal.

How to deal with annoying customers:

Susan wants a good deal and she isn’t afraid to step on some toes to get it. Although the annoying customer can get under our skin for obvious reasons, they do have a few positive sides. For one, they are in your store and they genuinely want to make a purchase. The coupon wielding customer can also take older, out of date stock off your hands in an effort to score the best deal possible. Annoying or not, they are still at your store to spend their hard earned money and you need to respect their time even if they don’t respect yours. Don’t BS them, but say genuine, positive comments like, “Man, I should take you shopping with me!” or “Wow, I’m impressed with how much you are getting for your money’s worth!” This should lighten the tension a bit and they may even try and share some couponing tips with you!

Close the sale and convert them into a loyal customer:

Although it may be hard at times, remaining patient and cordial with an annoying customer is key. Think about it; they are used to pushing enough buttons so that the store owner will eventually cave, so if she sees you getting visibly frustrated then she thinks she is winning. Ultimately, they are just looking to get the best deal possible, so give it to them! Use this opportunity to sign them up for your app or newsletter. Tell her how you offer members-only discounts, exclusive coupons, or a reward program just for signing up and you are sure to have a loyal customer in no time!

Converting Customer Who Is Just Looking 6 Types of Customers

3. How to Convert a Customer Who “Is Just Looking”

Stephanie wanders into your boutique because she thought the window displays were “totes adorbs.” You greet her as she walks through the door and ask her if she needs anything to which she replies “I’m just looking.” Stephanie ambles around for a bit, posts about her trip on the ‘gram, and even tries on a couple summer dresses, but ultimately leave empty-handed.

How to deal with the wandering customer:

Unfortunately, this is the most common type of customer. How many times have you yourself walked into a store just because you were bored, had time to kill, or just felt like window shopping? This type of customer could also be keeping you at arm’s length because they don’t want to be pressured into buying something they weren’t planning on originally buying. So how do you get them to buy? This type of customer wants a balance between attentiveness and space. Without being creepy, keep an eye on them and offer periodic suggestions if they seem interested in anything in particular. Offer suggestions like “Did you know that dress is currently part of our summer promotion?” or “I see you have a few things in your hand, can I start you a fitting room?”

Close the sale and convert them into a loyal customer:

This customer is going to be your toughest challenge to convert since they may not be looking to buy anything. Although they make up the smallest portion of sales, DO NOT IGNORE THEM. Just because they don’t want to buy now doesn’t mean that they won’t want to buy in the future. See if they’re interested in signing up for your newsletter to stay up to date or tell them to follow your business Instagram where you post photos of your adorable French Bulldog. They are guaranteed to remember your awesome customer service skills, especially if you have a super cute mascot to back you up.

Converting Customer Who Has 3 Kids And Doesnt Have Time for You 6 Types of Customers

4. How to Convert a Customer Who has 3 Kids and Doesn’t Have Time for You

You notice Joanna and her kids as soon as they enter your restaurant. She is visibly flustered as the children are asking for everything in the dessert display case and one of them has run off and is attempting to climb on a table. She searches the menu for a few minutes before giving up and just heading home and deciding to reheat yesterday’s leftovers.

How to deal with distracted customers:

Although a parent with unruly kids may not be your ideal client, treat them right and you are guaranteed to have a loyal customer (who will brag about their experience to everyone in their parent group). What the shopper who has their kids in tow really wants is for someone to be both patient and understanding. Kids are going to be kids; they may try to climb places they shouldn’t, scream their lungs out, or play with inventory; however, you need to remember to stay positive and only intervene if their actions could cause harm to themselves or another customer. If you need to step in, say things like “Sorry, you can’t climb on that.” or “Be careful, I don’t want you to get hurt.”

Close the sale and convert them into a loyal customer:

Earning the business of a busy parent is definitely going to be a challenge so you need to step your game up. Do you have kids of your own? Offer up a story where your kids were less than ideal tagalongs. This will help put the stressed parent at ease and help build rapport. Better yet, show the kids a magic trick, have a kiddie corner set up, or keep a handful of candy and (with parents permission) offer it to the little ones. By paying attention to the rugrats you are taking a major stressor off of the parent and they will definitely favor your business over your competitor’s.

Converting Customers Who Are On A Mission 6 Types of Customers

5. How to Convert a Customer Who is on a Mission

Jeff hits the sales lot looking for one thing only: the 2018 Dodge Charger with a 5.6L Hemi in candy apple red. After walking through one of the rows, a salesman approaches Jeff and asks if there is anything he can help him find. Jeff tells the salesman exactly what he is looking for, but the salesman is not sure if they have that particular model out on the lot so he asks Jeff to wait a minute while he checks the store inventory. Jeff decides he would rather take his business elsewhere.

How to deal with the focused customer:

The mission-driven customer may not like shopping, doesn’t have a lot of time to waste, or just wants to get what they need and get out of dodge. They are looking for short and direct responses so make sure not to overwhelm them with a bunch of options. Be knowledgeable about your inventory and store so you can quickly and easily get them what they are looking for.

Close the sale and convert them into a loyal customer:

So how do you keep them coming back if they only want one thing? Offer them more ways to save time! Can they order your product online and pick it up in store? Could you ship directly to their house? Better yet, if they are going to be wanting your products in certain increments (weekly, monthly, etc) then set them up with auto delivery or make sure and have what they are wanting up at the front of the store so that when they walk in all you need to do is hand them what they want and they are on their way. Not only did you make the customer feel special, they are also going to remember how easy it is to shop at your store compared to others.

Converting Customers With Both Time And Money 6 Types of Customers

6. How to Convert a Customer with both Time AND Money to Spend

Charles and Harriet waltz in to your store and ask for your opinion on the best gift for their nephew who just turned 8 today. You guide them to the latest set of Avengers action figures and they each pick one to give little Johnny. At checkout, you mention a few Avengers themed costumes and accessories that other children have loved and they add on an Iron Man costume and Thor hammer.

How to deal with your ideal customer:

Count your blessings because this couple represents your ideal customer. That being said, TREAT THEM LIKE ROYALTY. All of your customers should receive excellent customer service, but you really need to amp it up for your ideal customer. This type of customer is going to be your greatest source of word of mouth referrals so you want to make sure and keep them happy. They already want to buy from your business, so it’s your job to keep it that way.

Close the sale and convert them into a loyal customer:

Like other types of customers, your ideal clients want to feel valued and have a personal connection to your store. While they’re browsing your store, find something to establish some common ground on. Say things like, “Your purse is so cute! Where’d you get it?” or “I noticed you’re a Jurassic Park fan, what do you think of the new Jurassic World series?” Considering this is your ideal customer, you not only want to keep them happy, but you also want to find more people like them. Ask for their opinions, send them surveys, and implement their feedback. They already like your store so keep them coming back with a loyalty program, exclusive coupons, or members only eblasts.

Made it all the way through the article? Good!

That’s the first step in showing you’re truly committed to making a change for the better in your sales approach.

So what’s the next step?

Implement these sales techniques in your retail business and let us know how they improved your customer conversion!

Leave us a comment on which approach you found most helpful or let us know if you think we missed something. Once you’ve got the hang of these handy dandy sales methods, check out our 25 tips on how to make people love your business. Can’t wait to hear from y’all!

Marisa Benites

Author Marisa Benites

CFO | Fashionista | Marketing Guru

More posts by Marisa Benites

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