In a fast moving retail environment like (say) a newsagency, you don’t have to sell. At least not the way most text books and some gurus tell you.
There are two conditions:
1. Make sure the store is laid out to optimise the opportunities to buy.
2. Make sure your visual merchandising tells the right story.
Then you can help the customer buy:
3. Simply have a conversation with the customer; a conversation that shows you are generally interested in what they want and help them get what they want.
Of course this means that you can’t stand behind the counter if you really, authentically and effectively want to engage with the customer.
Once you are in this position (you have achieved 1-3 above) then you may able to focus on learning some of the techniques that will help you have more productive conversations with customers. It takes skill to lower barriers and appeal to their emotions, and this skill can be learned.
One thing is for sure: it is NEVER about hard sell.
If you do this right, you may not get the sale today. But if you do it right you will get sales more often than most, more often than before; and worst case, you will get it next time.