Ten Reasons to Use a Pre-Delivery Checklist

Verizon Wireless is advertising a promotion called “Verizon Demo Days”.  The idea is that if you come into a Verizon store, their “experts” will show you how to use your phone.

Is it just me, or shouldn’t they do that every time a customer makes a purchase, “demo days” or not?  Should any retailer ever let a customer leave the store without making sure she knows how to operate the product she just bought?

The cell phone industry is notorious for this kind of thing. They advertise all their cool features but often don’t give you clear-cut instructions on how to use them (or they surprise you with additional costs and fees that you weren’t expecting).

Obviously there’s a lesson to be learned here.  Before your customer leaves your store, make sure they know how to use the item they purchased.

Many car dealers have addressed this problem with a printed pre-delivery checklist.  When you pick up your new car, you’re not allowed to leave until the salesman has gone over the check list and gotten you to sign off on it. 

Here are some good reasons to use a pre-delivery checklist in your store:

  1. You’ll present a very professional image to the customer.
  2. The customer will be much more satisfied with her purchase, leaving the door open to additional business later on.
  3. This satisfied customer will tell her friends, leading to more referral business.
  4. You won’t end up with an angry customer on the phone or in your store complaining that her widget isn’t working properly.
  5. You’ll have fewer returns.
  6. Your staff will spend more time selling and less time handling problems.
  7. Your staff will be happier knowing that they’ve done a complete job of serving the customer.
  8. The customer can’t come back later with something that they’ve damaged and say “no one told me…..”
  9. A well-designed checklist can help with add-on sales.  For example, one item might be “Does the customer have extra (bulbs, bags, thread, etc.)
  10. The checklist can be used as a closing tool.  “Ms. Customer, we’re so dedicated to your satisfaction that we use this checklist to make sure that I’ve covered everything with you before we let you take your widget home.”
  11. Your competitors aren’t doing it.
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