The Garden Centre Sales Parallel

Soon after the draconian lockdown restrictions were lifted earlier this year, Shelley and I visited a garden centre to replenish our herbaceous borders. We were expecting the worst experience but were pleasantly surprised.

The GCA – Garden Centre Association – had given extensive guidance on how to handle social distancing and the centre embraced these to the full.

We had a one-way system which took us around the centre “Ikea” style, and we remained behind the people in front like a slow-moving roller coaster. We were outside, so this helped, but even indoors, we felt completely safe. As a result, we spent and spent and spent.

Slowing us down and letting browse every display helped. Our need was intense because our herbaceous borders had suffered neglection. But it was the process that encouraged sales.

What about you and your process? Does it encourage more sales? If you’re in the mortgage profession or financial advice, do you now have shorter online video meetings rather than the old fashioned two-hour-long interview, thankfully a relic of the past.

Shorter meetings bring more variety. So do you signpost each session to deal with a certain aspect? For example, do you have a 20-minute one based around protection and maybe 20 minutes deciding the type of loan. Later on, it might be 20 minutes to discuss the mortgage offer and inheriting the property by your next of kin. More variety means more sales and more closing.

The secret is to have shorter meetings and more of them, with all the people that matter; each session has a distinct objective and close. The garden centre had border plants, followed by grasses, roses, onto the water feature section, fertilisers and soil feed. All encouraged a sale and a close before moving onto the next step.

Adopt the garden centre secret to your meeting structure, and you won’t go far wrong. As for our herbaceous border, it’s looking beautiful, ready for the next lockdown period.