You’ve had customers come to your business with cash in hand and you’ve turned them away.
You’ve turned them away by being closed, out of stock, or by your own bad customer service.
However, there is one opportunity where you don’t need to turn away customers. That time is closing time.
On our last vacation, my wife visited a local bakery to pick up some treats. It was late in the evening and the store was preparing to close. Although my wife could see the goods she wanted to buy, the employee turned her away.
My wife then drove to another bakery, bought some treats and returned home.
The next time we need treats while traveling, who do you think we’ll go to first? The bakery that didn’t turn us away.
Naturally, most businesses have to close at the end of the day. If you don’t draw the line somewhere, you’ll turn into a 24-hour business.
Nevertheless, when it looks like you can serve customers, you need to do so. If your store looks “open” to a potential customer, you haven’t set proper expectations.
When you are closing up shop, perhaps you can give customers an end-of-day deal or concession instead of turning them away. Surely that will build more loyalty than coldly refusing to take their money.
Be careful at closing time: set proper expectations about if you are really open for business and show some kindness in serving customers that show up during the transition time. If you can’t help a customer, have a standby referral you can give the customer that could help them right then.
How do you handle customers that arrive at closing time?