We love data at SpendBoss and when we find great research driven insights, we love to share. We recently came across some great data on retail store associates that got us thinking. With very high turnover at most retailers, associates represent a huge piece of the workforce that may not be getting the attention they deserve.
While this data is a tad old, from 2012/13 it paints an incredible picture about the power and opportunity of finding ways to engage and train associates to drive revenue. Experticity commissioned Marshall Fisher, a professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, to collect data from 330 stores with ~63,500. The original research is available here: “2013 Experticity Retail Buying Experience Survey.”
“SALES ASSOCIATES WHO ENGAGE WITH PRODUCT EDUCATION SELL MORE. A LOT MORE.” – Experticity
The research showed that sales associates who completed even one short online module with Experticity (Full disclosure #1, this research was funded by Experticity. Full disclosure #2 SpendBoss does not have a relationship as of today with Experticity or the research presented in this blog post) sold 69% more than those who didn’t. And associates who completed six or more modules sold 123% more than those who took none. For brands and retailers, it’s clear that engagement with product education is a leading indicator of sales.
At SpendBoss, we like to focus on Store Managers as the leader at a given location. However, the sales associates under them are often the ones interacting directly with customers, talking about product and driving sales. We believe that reducing the amount of time your store personnel spend on administrative tasks directly leads to having more time for driving revenues.
“50% of customers are looking for expert advice on what to buy when they enter a store — and 73% say product knowledge is what they need most from a sales associate.” – Experticity