As I wandered through a local farmers market last weekend I noticed 2 different approaches used by the vendors. In some cases, the farmer simply stood behind his display and waited for people to approach his/her stand to make a purchase. However, other vendors, were very active in generating attention AND sales.
Two vendors stood out among the dozens of stands selling everything from fruits and vegetables to fresh bread to clothing. In both cases, the people working the stand was actively seeking people out. They were quick to acknowledge customers and extremely upbeat and energetic. Plus, they actual sold their goods, each in their own manner.
One person had a well-rehearsed infomercial developed that he recited as he demonstrated his product. Another used descriptive words to tell people how fresh his produce was and he created a sense of urgency. In both cases, the vendors kep their eyes open and continually watched the people at their stand so they could process every sale fast.
They didn't make people wait. They didn't wait for customer to approach them. They didn't waste any time capitalizing on every sales opportunity. They had a constant flow of people and I'm sure they both generated significant sales during the day.
How does this apply to a typical retail environment?
Don't wait for your customers to approach you with a question. Take the initiative and be proactive. Talk to your customers. Ask them questions. find out what they're looking and help them make a buying decision.
Read the first two chapters of my retail sales book.