Friday, June 28, 2013

No I Don't Work Here - Why Don't Salesmen Know Their Products?

Today I went to the Sprint store with a friend. While there a lady came in and asked the only person working there at the time if he could fix her phone's internet connection. I guess that she had an android and had just turned off the data connection option. I said it aloud to her that it would probably be an easy fix and briefly explained what had happened. After messing with the phone for a minute or two the guy handed it back and affirmed that I was 100% correct. He then said to me (and no I'm not joking or exaggerating at all) "Hey you used to work at Sprint, huh?" I just laughed at the absurdity of the statement. Not only have I never worked at Sprint, I've never worked in any cell phone store or even any retail outlets at all. I just found it funny that he thought the only people who would know the answer to that question would have to be a former employee.

After this, someone asked about a new phone that was waterproof, to which the salesman motioned to a large image of a Sprint Nextel work phone that had a huge rubber case to protect it. Although this phone may be waterproof, this wasn't the phone they were talking about. But the salesman persisted, saying that this was the only phone on the market that had the ability to be submersed in water. However I was watching TV earlier today and saw the phone that they were asking about. The thing is it was a Samsung Galaxy model that is only available from AT&T. So no wonder he didn't know, but come on man, there are more phones in the world than just what they sell where you work. Also while there I noticed him trying to get people to upgrade to phones that they didn't need just so he could charge them more. He went on to say how Androids were so much better because you didn't have to pay for ringtones, apps, or any other kinds of downloads while on iPhone you have to pay an arm and a leg. Once she decided on an Android phone he mentioned how there was no on board storage on Android based phones and that she needed a memory card to save anything on it. While some phones may not have a ton of on board storage, many do have a decent amount of storage on board or they come with a memory card that has a few gigs of storage space available on it. I know some phones can't capture pictures without a memory card, but that is not always the case. And many people don't ever save anything on their phones whatsoever so it isn't absolutely necessary. And then, just like all salesmen, he exaggerated how big of a memory card she needed. He coaxed her into buying a memory card that cost her like $50 extra, saying that this is the one she needed and that anything else would run out of room in no time. Now if she would have just shopped around or went online she could have found a similar memory card for less than half the price that she paid. It's just funny how people sway customers in certain ways that don't help the customer at all. He said that he didn't like iPhones and even though that is what the customer wanted, she should get an Android because they are all better. Ironically the person that I went to the store with wanted to get an Android phone and walked out with an iPhone! Go figure that one out!

I've had the same feelings about electronics salesmen all my life. I often know more about the products that they are selling than they do. I am constantly correcting them about things they say as they try to coax me into buying a product that will give them a higher commission. Once I display my knowledge the always get very defensive so nowadays I try not to do it unless necessary. This way they don't get mad at me and mess up my purchase somehow. I have never really wanted to be a salesman but now that I think of it I would be pretty good at it. I once had a friend who worked at a car dealership and he asked if I wanted a job but I turned it down because I was trying to pursue a job in my career field. But now I would take whatever job I could make the most money at for the time being. If I could sell phones, computers, TVs, or even cars I would be able to sell them like hotcakes. I'm a little shy at first but once I get confident and comfortable I am unstoppable. If given the chance I bet I could be a top seller at whatever I tried my hand at. Especially if it was an item I was familiar with. Maybe one day I will try my hand at selling for a living.