Every customer is different. Painting all customers with the same brush could lead to results that you are not looking for. When we asked these jewellers how they tactically break the ice, we were quite surprised with how different each of them responded. This just goes to show consumers differ region to region. While some like to be asked many questions, some don’t. But one thing is for sure – all of them want to feel at ease and special.

Smile, it makes all the difference! - Prathap Kamat, Abaran Timeless, Bangalore

50 to 60 per cent of customers, when they walk into a jewellery store, feel apprehensive. So the first thing we do is to welcome them with a warm smile. It makes all the difference! We also like to follow that with our traditional namaskar, I think that helps customers in being more comfortable. Globally, when people come in, they like to look around and browse the entire store first. Also majority of our customers today are middle class. Language also plays an important role. If you have an all English speaking staff, it could intimidate the customer. So make sure you have people who can converse in the regional language too.

Don’t pressure or bombard them with too many questions - Sumeet Anand, Punjabi Saraf, Indore

We have a floor manager, a pleasant looking lady who welcomes and greets the client. We say all the nice things possible and make sure the customer feels comfortable. Many a time, the client wants to look around, and we also want them to have a good look at the store before they decide what they want to buy. But sometimes, they know what they want, hence we usher them to that particular counter. At no point do we pressurize them or ask them too many questions – this I think is a total put off; you have to give your client a free reign.

Don’t offer too much or too less - Nakshatra Mehta, Rare Heritage, Mumbai

The first and foremost thing that we look forward to is their comfort. The minute our customer walks in, of course the customary things are in place where the receptionist will welcome them and offer tea or coffee but that is not we as a brand focus on. If a soon-to-be bride walks in and she is anyway frazzled looking at everything that’s offered to her, we try and look at what her requirement is exactly. We won’t offer her anything more or anything less, just her requirement is of utmost importance to us and her comfort. It is really important to understand her personality. If she trusts you enough that you exactly understand what she wants, that is job half done for us.

Have designated, experienced staff at the lobby - Vastupal Ranka , Ranka Jewellers, Pune

We have a team of supervisor and sales and customer representatives who are at the entrance of the lobby at our showrooms. As the customer comes, they greet them with wishes then they ask them what they would like to see. They are then escorted to the designated area and seated. Secondly we have a good lineage of old employees, who are there with us for many years and we have customers also who have been with us for generations so most of our clients are regular customers who are known by the staff or top level executives. Needless to say, there is a feel good factor which always persists in the atmosphere. We also offer them beverages to their liking. This is how we maintain a relationship with the client. We also have a lot of cross-selling happening, for example, a customer might have come looking for something but we take them to the diamond section to have a look. Usually when they come to that particular section, they end up making a purchase.

Always ask open ended questions - Deepankar Jain, Nikkammal Jewellery House, Ludhiana

These days when a client walks in, they exactly know what they want. We always ask them how they are doing or how their day is going. We ask them what they want to see and we make sure we keep the questions open ended so that we keep the conversation alive. We ask them if they want to buy jewellery for themselves or for someone else and we also check with them if they want to gift jewellery to someone – this way we understand that we have to show them something exclusive. My only tip is to keep asking them a lot of questions in a casual way such that we understand their psyche and no matter who walks into the store this is our mantra.

Compiled by Vijetha Rangabashyam & Shreya Thakur