This post starts my Successful Shopping tips series. To me a shopping trip is successful if I find what I need for a price that is reasonable to me. In order for a trip to be successful it must be in budget and I have to walk out not feeling guilty or second guessing myself!
Information is one of the key tools in saving and really getting the most for your money. You can gain information from blogs, newspapers or books but some of my best money saving information has been gleaned from casual conversations with the sales associates of retail stores.
Now I don’t track down sales associates and corner them for their secrets but I do keep myself open to conversation. I am friendly and approachable. If a sales associate approaches me and offers assistance I usually take them up on this offer. And even though I’m never fishing for sales information I usually get some tips!
You may also want to make a sales associate friend in the stores that you frequent. At my grocery store I have cashiers that know me and also some workers that know me in specific departments. Not only do we talk about store deals but they’ve also offered me fresher products then what I currently had in my cart! When I was a sales associate for a large retail store I had frequent customers that I got along well with and I would always let them know when we were having mark-down nights. Sometimes I would even give them my friend/family coupons that we received if I had leftovers!
Here are some pointers for getting great information for sales associates:
- Don’t waste your time on a sales associate that is not in a helpful mood. They may be having a bad day or they may be overwhelmingly busy. There’s no reason to waste your time or theirs.
- Have a nice, easy, enjoyable conversation. I’ve of course had lots of conversations that ended up in no information at all. But I left feeling better for having a great conversation and hopefully I made someone else’s workday a little more fun!
- If you have a maintained relationship with a sales associate don’t feel pressured to always talk to them or choose their line for check-out. A nice wave is almost always appreciated though!