How to Lose a Sale!

Ok, I know I’m in the image business and that image really does matter. But it still completely shocks and horrifies me when I see it in action in a negative way, or experience it myself!

Jeff and I were enjoying poking around all the shops in Mendocino this past weekend. Of course, I had to hit each and every jewelry store we encountered. On the way back to the car, Jeff spied one on a side street that had escaped my normally perfect radar. Upon entering the beautiful establishment, the sole employee did not even acknowledge us. Hmmm…strange, especially since there wasn’t a single other customer in the store. Granted, we were in our “hiking clothes,” but nevertheless, most of the people out and about were not in their Sunday best!

After making verbal contact with her (though she wouldn’t look at me), we continued to stroll around the stunning displays. I finally stopped and asked about a stylish 1960’s carnelian cocktail ring, talking about its history and asking a few questions. Did she even offer to take it out of the case to try it on? No. Did she seriously just walk away from both me and the jewelry case mid-conversation? Yes. Did she com-PLETELY lose a possible sale? MOST definitely!

I still get worked up just thinking about it. Apparently the scene with Julia Roberts on Rodeo Drive from Pretty Woman is not as fictionalized as we might think. How sad…

Really? You won't even show me the ring?!

12 thoughts on “How to Lose a Sale!”

  1. Do send this post to the jewelry store involved – they should know what a terrible employee they have and what they missed!!! Oh yeah, Pretty Woman revisited 🙂

  2. I remember a friend who worked at Nordstrom. One day she was the only one who offered to help a guy dressed in jeans and a flannel shirt. Turns out he was a very rich guy who had to wear a suit all week and wanted to be casual on the weekends. He bought tons of stuff and she got a great commission. But, she also got a compliment, because she was the only employee who paid attention to him. It still shocks me, especially now when everyone is so casual, that people are rude like this.


    P.S. You look better in your hiking clothes than some of us look in our regular clothes.

  3. Seriously? In a town like Mendicino where Ecco shoes are a fashion statement?

    Send the store your note. Rudeness is an unfortunate and prevalent disease in retail.

    And yes, you looked fab in your hiking outfit!

  4. Dear Julia,

    Thank you for visiting our store and I regret that you felt neglected.  Our experience here in Mendocino over the last 30+ years has been that folks visit the North Coast for the relaxing experience of being away from the rush of their everyday lives…… kick back a little and enjoy the experience of a more relaxed life style.  Please consider the possibility that what you experienced as neglect and/or snootiness was our long standing understanding that customers be given space and time to leisurely enjoy our store.  By design we are not a big urban chain store with the formulated greeting policies and procedures……… we enjoy our pace of life here on the coast and hope to impart that same enjoyment to our customers.  

    The notion that we would judge you for how you were dressed is just silly……. we
    always want our customers to feel comfortable in our store and the last thing we would do is judge you for what you were wearing.  Finally, in what world do you live in that you expect us to respond to your “post” within 24 hours.  Get real, relax and take some pleasure in the silent and peaceful moments between each text.  

    For me…….. a light rain is falling on the coast, I’m sitting next to my fireplace and it is time to enjoy the remainder of my day with not much to do.  Hope that you found some enjoyment in Mendocino.  If you do visit us again, we will try to be more attentive.

    Sent from my iPadjj

    1. Thank you for your response and I appreciate you giving me your view of your customer service. I felt it necessary to write this post, as we went in numerous stores in the town, were treated very friendly by all the workers and never felt rushed or pressured. (I agree with you that Mendocino is a relaxed, charming town.) Based on your yelp reviews, I’m not the only one who’s had this experience at your store. After a couple of similar customer complaints, if you still feel you’re able to defend your customer service, that is your prerogative.

  5. Wow. Even a snarky response, for everyone to read! That’s about the worst PR a store could have, right there. Would be better to find a business that DOESN’T deal with customer service, in my opinion.

    1. Well I won’t reveal that, but I wouldn’t be surprised if you figure it out on your own. Enjoy Mendocino–it’s darling!

  6. Blown away by the owners’ response. What a piece of work. What part of walking away mid conversation did she not get. In in this day and age, response withiin 24 hrs is the norm especially if you own a store and have a complaint/concern. Nightmare!
    You’re a class act Amy not naming the store, far better than I.

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