Over the past six months I made a number of purchases contributing to the sales volume at the Home Depot store in Hackettstown, New Jersey.
The first major purchase was a log splitter. Not knowing what to buy and having a large selection to pick from, I was helped by Don Orfield.
Don asked me a number of questions to understand what I was trying to accomplish. With his help I was able to select an electric portable splitter I could move easily by hand. By the way it does a great job.
My next major purchase at Home Depot was a snow blower. Not know anything about snow blowers and having a large selection to choose from I was lucky to be helped by Don. We talked about my needs and with his help I made my purchase.
After the purchase Don offered to have the snow blower assembled and would call me when it was ready. The day I picked up the snow blower Don had it ready with some gas in the tank. At first glance the machine looked very complicated to use.
There were multiple handles and switches, a choke, and an electric start. Don took the time to show me how to start it up and use the controls. He said that watching someone demonstrate it would make it a lot easier when I got it home and read the manual.
This year I needed to change the locks in my house. There was a combination of eight dead bolts and entry locks.
I was told that a locksmith would charge about $85.00 per lock to match all the locks. I went to Home Depot thinking it would be cheaper to just buy all new locks.
This time I was waited on by Matt Unkel. Matt suggested instead of buying all new locks I should go home and see what different types of locks I had and then come back.
When I went back to the store I had two of one type of lock and an assortment of the others. Matt suggested I buy two locks. Go home and bring in the locks I had on my doors and he would re- key them for me.
When the project was completed all my house locks matched and I spent less than one hundred dollars. Matt did not charge me for the rekeying of all the other locks. His words were, I see you in here a lot it is on us.
Due to high winds in my area the brackets for the hot tube bent when the cover was up. I tried to buy new brackets. I thought my only choice was to buy a new system that would come to over three hundred dollars.
I took the mounting brackets down to Home Depot thinking I would buy new aluminum pipe and build new brackets. I saw Don Orfield and asked if he had any suggestions. Don took me to the plumbing department.
Using a pipe bender he was able to straighten the pipes. I purchased two new bolts, nuts and washers along with pipe insulators and I was back in business for under eleven dollars.
From time to time I have purchased paint at Home Depot. Gerry Figurelli and Cate Oakley have always been there to recommend the right brush, match colors and do whatever it takes.
There are some very important lessons from these experiences from a big box store.
If you want to increase your market share, increase sales volume it takes more than a just trying to sell stuff. It takes an attitude of customer service and building relationships
- Don, Cate, Gerry and Matt were genuinely interested in me.
- They took the time to ask questions to determine what I was trying to accomplish.
- There were no sales pitches.
- They all made suggestions they felt were in my best interests.
- They gave of themselves. (On the day Matt worked with me he was getting ready to leave the store and stayed to help me. Don was just about to have lunch when I arrived with the bent hot tub cover brackets and helped me.)
I can buy a snow blower, a log splitter, a bolt anywhere. I know when I have to buy something I can go to Home Depot and get the help I need. My experience with Home Depot’s sales processes and systems was that it is built around customer service and customer satisfaction.
I know when I have a problem there will be someone there interested in helping me.
When the board of directors of a company, select people that know how to build relationships, they in turn will be building a customer base that will stay loyal.