Is There a Shift Happening in Sign Shop Sales?

The sign industry is changing constantly. The most important question that goes along with these changes is the effect they may have on sales.

Many sign shop owners have a business model that not only revolves around their current sales, but also on a steady pipeline of potential future sales. In fact, many sign shops use a special representative whose job it is to sniff out leads.

The Sales Representative

One major shift that has been brought up by sign shop managers is the reimagined role of these sales representatives.

Some believe the sales representative role has transitioned from being a sales-first position to a hybrid role that is focused on customer service and project management.

The Importance of Customer Service

A larger emphasis has been placed on good customer service. When a sign shop sales representative says they will be at a certain place at a certain time, customers respond very positively when that promise is fulfilled.

When a customer sees the passion of a sales representative go beyond the mere numbers of a transaction, the benefits can be substantial. For small sign shops, the personal edge that can be brought by a dedicated representative is immensely important.

Line in the Sand

The line of what constitutes sales in the traditional sense has been blurred. The customer, in the modern era, has more control over the negotiating process, and the representatives for your sign shop should try to appeal to them in ways that go beyond old-school sales techniques.

Obviously, the sales process still exists. Estimates, and the algorithms that determine them, are still utilized. Ironically, however, navigating the sales process itself has become the most complicated part of closing a sale.

A man holds his credit cardWatch Your Tone

Even when sales representatives fail in their customer service duties, taking a consultative tone is still important. Making the customer feel like they still have some control of the process is a key to good customer service.

By the time the sales process begins, many customers have likely already decided that they need the product you are selling. It is best not to fracture this immediate trust with hard negotiations. Instead, representatives should make an effort to reinforce the sign shop’s dedication to making the customer feel comfortable and engaged.

The Future of Sales

At the heart of this perceived shift in the sales landscape for sign shops is the manager’s role. Should managers be taking an active, networking role in this new sales process, or should sales representatives embrace the shift and lead the charge? And if the sales representative’s role is altered so much, has such a position become obsolete?

There are no easy answers to these questions, especially because sign shops come in so many different sizes. Smaller shops can probably not afford an employee whose duties can be covered by others, whereas a larger shop can more easily pay someone to predominately handle sales.

Ergo, there is still a place for specialized salespeople at larger sign shops. Having more hands on deck when it comes to finding leads can only help. Therefore, the shifting landscape that has been proposed may be moving at a slower pace than some may have you believe.

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