Retail Sales Strategy | I’m Just Looking

sales strategyBy: Sean McPheat

If you work in the retail industry then this tip is just for you!

No doubt, if you have worked on the shop floor, hearing those three dreaded words “I’m Just Looking” have annoyed you, aggravated you and made you damn right angry at times.
Well, many customers will say this as a stimulus response to get you off their back and to give them a “breather” whether they are actually buying or not. Some customers will say it because your greeting is the 12th one they have heard that day and they are fed up with being approached by sales people.

No matter what their reasons are for saying it, just appreciated that it is an automatic response.
So how can you overcome the “I’m just looking” response?
Well, Here are two tips to help you.


Think about the most common greetings you say to your customers on a regular basis.
You might even find out that you use same greeting every time.
Well, if you are using common openings like “How may I help you?” or “Do you need any help?” you are leaving yourself wide open for a “I’m just looking” response

Now that’s not to say that you shouldn’t use those openings but you should vary them throughout the day depending upon the circumstances and the customer. You really do need to make yourself different to the rest.

Just think about it – your customer may have been in 7 different shops before yours and has received the same opening from every sales person! They will be really wracked off if they hear “How can I help?” one more time!

Make yourself different from your competition. Make the customer say to themselves “That was different” or “That was not the norm”.

So what sort of greetings can you use?

Well, look at the circumstances in your shop and then tailor your approach.

For example, you are selling mobile phones and someone is looking at a top of the range brand new model – you could say something like “They make them more smaller and more stylish all of the time don’t they?” or “That’s a real stylish design isn’t it?”

If the customer is young, looks hip and trendy you could say something like “That’s a real cool design isn’t it?”. If the customer is wearing an expensive suit, looks business like and formal you could try “XYZ supplier keep on pushing the boundaries with their models – it looks amazing doesn’t it?”
Think about what you currently use today and then write down some openings that you could use in the future for different types of people and then use the circumstances in the shop to tailor them and adapt them accordingly


People buy from people that they know, like and trust.
By creating an opening based on humour you will break down some of the buying barriers that may already exist with your customer.
It is also a great way to build up some rapport right from the word go.
It will also be something that your competitors will most likely not have done so it will put you at a distinct advantage over them.

So how can you inject humour into your opening?

Well, there is a great opportunity to use humour when you get the “I’m just looking” response so you could actually set that up if you wanted to.

“Hi, can I help you with anything?”

“Oh, I’m just looking”

“That’s fine, please feel free as it’s the only thing that the Prime Minister has not managed to tax yet”


“Hi, how may I help you?”

“I’m just looking thanks”

“That’s fine, It’s a lot warmer in here than it is out there! When you see something that you like, look for me and I’ll let you know whether it qualifies for the special offers that we have go on today. Was there anything that you were looking for in particular?”

Creating an effective opening can make or break a sale and you need to practice what we preach, also when, for example, you are exhibiting at a conference or at a show.
You should challenge yourselves never to use the “How may I help you” “How can I help you” opening line.
If we do, we have to put a fiver into the kitty for the post-show beers!

I know those tips will help you to overcome the “I’m just looking response?” but remember they will only help you if you actually implement them.

It’s All About Communication

How’s Your Communication?

Every Sales or Marketing Rep needs to be aware of his or her communication style.
Knowing how you communicate and what the effect of your communication is will have a HUGE EFFECT on your sales results.

In the Seventies, two brilliant individuals: Richard Bandler and John Grinder laid the foundation of what they called NLP, Neuro Linguistic Programming. They were working at the University of California (Santa Cruz) and initially mainly focused on medical and psychological applications.
This is what it stands for:

Many qualified NLP trainers all over the world are applying NLP in many fields:

  • Improving results in Sports
  • Achieving better mental health
  • Team building in companies
  • Coaching of successful entrepreneurs
  • Improving Sales Results for sales reps
  • and many more applications

Selling For Winners will take you by the hand and provide you with some fabulous, proven NLP tools which will increase you sales results over an over again. Just watch this space in the coming months: we’re building an NLP Power House.

Throughout this website we will surprise you with NLP quotes and amaze you with the simplicity of NLP.

It Doesn’t Matter What You Say – It’s How You Say It

Most people do not realize that, based on research, it has been established that the content of your communication (i.e. what you actually say) is only 7% of the actual message. Your tone of voice represents 35% of the message and your body language determines the way the message is received for 58%!

NLP Representation systemsMany sales people are talking and talking and talking in a sharp voice and are not aware of their body language. That’s why only 7% of the message is actually arriving at your prospect’ s mind. Those sales reps have no idea why they are not as successful as their colleagues, who are not talking a lot but have a very confident posture and a nice voice.

The best way to understand this is to think about our most dangerous communication method today: e-mail.

E-mail is so dangerous because it only sends 7% of the message. Recipients of the e-mail do not hear your voice and do not see your body language. All they can do is make an interpretation of what they THINK you mean. That’s how in companies sometimes “e-mail wars” are created by just one misinterpreted message.

Every sales rep sending proposals to a prospect is risking to lose the deal for the very same reason: your prospect may not understand what you actually mean and turn down your offer due to misinterpretation.
The one and only way to increase your odds of success is to personally take the proposal to the prospect and explain your proposal step by step to the prospect.

What Sells and How To Sell

communication in sales

Over the past 30+ years, I have collected many amazing sales tips from sales professionals all over the world.
Make sure you visit this website on a regular basis, as I will add new tips all the time.
People keep asking me what makes a sale (and what not). My answer is always:

 It’s All About Communication

The way you communicate with your prospect or customer determines whether your prospects likes you or not. If the prospect likes you he will also trust you.
So always remember:

people buy trus


To build up the trust you must keep asking questions and show a genuine interest in your prospect. If you only repeat a couple of pre-rehearsed standard questions your prospect will feel that you are just acting like a robot. I don’t konw about you but I don’t trust robots…

Of course it’s important to be well prepared for every sales meeting or sales call but do show a real interest in the person you are meeting or calling. That will make the difference that makes the difference…

Here is a growing list of Subjects for our Sales Tips and Sales Tactics which will be coming on a weekly basis:

Do You Like Being Sold To?
Are you one of those people who likes to be “Sold to” wherever they go? I’ll put my hand up and say that I’m in that category – much to the disgust of my wife when we go out shopping together!

Your Biggest Challenge In Selling
many unsuccessful sales professionals have some fixed ideas in their heads that their successfull colleagues were “made for selling”. That is a limiting belief, hampering your own success in sales…

A Customer Is “Just Looking”
Now, if you work in the retail industry then this tip is just for you! No doubt, if you have worked on the shop floor, hearing those three dreaded words “I’m Just Looking” have annoyed you, aggravated you and made you damn right angry at times…

These Are The Worst Questions In Selling
The questions you ask during a sales call can determine the success or failure of the call. Some sales people make their job more difficult by asking really bad questions…

Are You Losing On Price?
What’s the biggest objection you face in attempting to close sales? If you’re like most people, your answer is “It costs too much!”

What if You Don’t Close a Sale?
It is okay if you don’t close a sale, as long as you close for something else…

Big Money
There exists a super elite group of top salespeople that make all the BIG money. They operate on the fast track and have mastered new effective selling techniques. If you want to join them you need to master ways to exploit the 80/20 rule…

What do you do when one of your best customers has been hunting around for a better price? The customer makes it clear to you that they see no difference between your product and a much cheaper competitor. You’re told that they all look the same. Sounds familiar…

Stop Cold Calling
I wasted many years cold calling, trying it on with marketing people and attending networking events. Then when you do finally find some good sales opportunities the competition are already all over it… Well guess what? Top Sales people have been keeping a nasty little secret from all of you…

Questions Questions
In order to make sales, you must ask questions, questions and more questions..

Get Past Gatekeeper
Some secretaries are so protective, the don’t let you talk to their bosses! Here is some advice to get past this gate keeper

Make A Difference
To make a difference in sales you have to make your contact more personal. I still keep a present I received more than 20 years ago