Playing ‘Flip It’ with returns and exchanges
Through a special arrangement, presented here for discussion is a summary of a current article from Retail Contrarian, the blog of the Dynamic Experiences Group.
One of the keys to being successful in the last week of December is your staff’s ability to "flip" customers who come in for a refund or exchange into making a purchase. It won’t happen with every customer, but it rarely happens at all if you don’t try.
That’s why I recommend you make a game out of it by playing Flip It. Flip It not only focuses your team on turning returns/exchanges into sales, but now your staff will actually be happy to see a return/exchange customer and the opportunity to turn them into a sale.
Here’s how it works:
- Determine how many days the Flip It contest runs. For examply, run it from Dec. 26 through Dec. 31.
- Identify prizes. Prizes need to be large enough to keep your team engaged and interested. I recommend setting the daily prize as a $20 bill or gift card, which is passed around throughout the day as one employee tops another. For a monthly incentive, I suggest both a prize and a funny title for bragging rights, something like $50 and the title of Queen (or King) Flip It. (Prizes can also be set for every Flip It over a certain amount — i.e., a $5 gift card for every return/exchange that has a net increase of $100.)
- Score Flip It so it is simple and fun. A customer comes in with a $20 return, but the salesperson sells him $60 of additional items. That means the current top Flip It sale is $40. (You have to net out the return or exchange.) The next customer has a $130 item to exchange, and the salesperson sells her additional items worth $200. The net Flip It sale is $70. That associate now gets to take the cash or gift card from the other salesperson.
The person with the highest net Flip It sale at the end of the first day wins the daily prize, and is also the current Flip It Queen (or King.) Post the current person’s name and amount on a sign in the back room for everyone to see and aim to beat. For the rest of the game, you’ll have a daily winner, and also a current Flip It King or Queen amount to beat.
How effective do you see incentives and games like Flip It for improving add-on sales for returns and exchanges? What are some other ways to motivate staff post-holiday?