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Looking to start working at a gun counter at a local gun shop? Any tips?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by William Dykstra, Apr 4, 2019.

  1. newfalguy101

    newfalguy101 Member

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    LISTEN to the buyer, sell them what THEY are looking for, not what you think they "need".

    When asked your opinion, give your honest opinion, BUT, only your opinion of what they asked about.

    Example: some guy asks your opinion on Glocks, tell your opinion of Glock, resist the urge to rattle on about competeing brands.

    When I had my FFL and did shows, I always felt part of my job was educating people, and always tried to take time to talk with people .....I landed many sales because too many of my competitors couldnt be bothered to spend 10 minutes talking about ar 15 lowers.
     
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  2. Fine Figure of a Man

    Fine Figure of a Man Member

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    If I found myself working behind the counter at someones gun store I would devote all my free time to finding a better job. I suppose it would be alright as a retirement job for someone that enjoyed it. When you're young, make hay while the sun shines.
     
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  3. Jeb Stuart

    Jeb Stuart Member

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    Wear good shoes.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2019
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  4. Fine Figure of a Man

    Fine Figure of a Man Member

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    If the OP is serious, do some research on what it takes to be the best.
    Google "Best gun salesman ever", might find some good info.:cool:
     
  5. entropy

    entropy Member

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    No, it just comes up with a picture of Obama.
     
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  6. 748

    748 Member

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    Bullet proof vest.
     
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  7. Jeb Stuart

    Jeb Stuart Member

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    Use your experience (if not a retirement job) at the store as a stepping stone to higher paid jobs. Will disagree about giving your opinion when asked. Save your opinions for a gun forum. Lol, for sure do not do something stupid like when a customer ask your opinion of a certain gun for instance, blurt out "They Suck". Bashing a gun will make you look low rent and just piss people off.
    Keep your enthusiasm up, listen to the customers needs, wants and desires. Learn the art of selling "Features and Benifits" and learn how to close the deal. You are not there to make friends. Never be afraid to ask for the sale after the customer has found the gun he wants. Learn how to close the sale. It is a art, learn to be good at it.
    Any sales job is based on performance. Going to your Boss and saying you made zero sales, but made a lot of friends will just get you fired. Do not let people waste your time. I see this done all the time at LGS. You will get plenty of these guys that have no problem wasting your time which is taking food off your table. Time is money.
    Get out of retail as soon as you pickup some experience. Think bigger ticket items for the next job.Just curious, are you going to be working at a local Gun Shop or a large Corporate store like Bass Pro etc?
    There will be more opportunities in a Corporate environment. If you do land in a Large Corporation, learn the art of Kissing Butt to your supervisors. It is the fastest way to the top.
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2019
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  8. thecarfarmer

    thecarfarmer Member

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    A lot of good posts here, many of which mentioned firearm safety. Especially managing the actions of the public who walk in the door.

    One other thing I would like to add, please don't (as store personnel) sweep me with the muzzle of a firearm.

    I don't care if I just saw you check that gun for clear, it really creeps me the heck out. And, doesn't make me respect your opinions or judgment too much, either.

    Of course, since the OP is intelligent enough to post here looking for advice, he probably wouldn't be 'that guy' anyway...
     
  9. bikerdoc

    bikerdoc Moderator Staff Member

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    My retirement job for the last ten years has been in a gun store. It is more than guns. It is computers, inventory systems, accounting, physical and personal security, paperwork, a lot of lifting and lugging and dealing with mall nijas, fudds, and seal wannabes.

    I do it to get out of the house, it is easy, and I get a terrific employee discount.
    It is not a career unless it is in a soulless big box environment or you own it.
    You can do better as a sales rep for a gun product.
     
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  10. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

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    William Dykstra

    This is really basic and applies to most any kind of sales position or any contact with customers:

    Treat every customer exactly the same way you would want to be treated if you were the customer.
     
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  11. Jeb Stuart

    Jeb Stuart Member

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    The best deal is when both parties win.
     
  12. DeepSouth

    DeepSouth Member

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    Best advise I ever got about working for a living was simply
    “The boss isn’t always right, but he’s always the boss.”

    I've been amazed how many people don’t seem to understand that.

    As far as something gun related, don’t be a mall ninja.
     
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  13. JeeperCreeper

    JeeperCreeper Member

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    Don't assume that you're the expert and that customers are coming to you for your expertise.

    I think a good policy is to figure out how to ask someone's experience level before assuming. I work in the medical field, so I'm always asking my patients "are you familiar with this or do you have experience with this?". If you are genuine and nice, no one cares and appreciates it.

    The worst is when you're explaining high blood pressure and find out your patient is a nurse or physician.

    I hate being talked at, I want an equal conversation. That goes with the above, don't act like a know-it-all.

    Also, don't be afraid to say "I don't know". At car dealerships and gun stores, I always ask questions I know the answers to to set up a salesman. That way I can see if they are honest or knowledgeable.
     
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  14. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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    1 handgun out of the show case at a time.

    The scam- A group comes in, 5 guys this time.. All want to see a handgun.
    One guy behind the counter. He hands each a gun. Guns going back and forth. Guns going in and out of the case.
    Counter guy looses track of the guns because the placement in the case in not marked for each gun.
    The "customers" all leave at the same time without buying anything.

    Seems a new Colt 380 went out the door when they left. True story.

    Don't wear a gun on your hip in plain view when behind the counter. You get shot first, if robbed.

    A vest , as posted above, not a bad idea.

    If the panic alarm is set off , when in the process of being robbed, dont be holding a firearm when cops come busting in with guns drawn.

    Tripping a silent panic alarm by mistake and not knowing it , still bring the cops with guns pointing at you, holding the gun. This happened.

    If they pay in cash, look for funny money.
     
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  15. Eddietruett

    Eddietruett Member

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    One of my best friends owns my LGS. I work with him at numerous gun shows. My expertise is Revolvers with maybe better than average in semi auto pistols. In the last 25 years, I have totally lost touch with the rifle and shotgun industry. The first couple of shows, I wound up feeling very stupid because customers would ask me questions about AR's, rifles, shotguns, etc and I would have to ask one of the other guys. I felt useless. So, Research it was. I spent a lot of time researching what sells well today and now I keep up with what's new as best I can. Certainly not an expert on all types of firearms, but I can hold my own. Now is where being in sales for 40 years comes into play. When a customer asks a question, answer it to the best of your ability and DO NOT try to BS the customer. You never know how much or how little he actually knows. If you don't know the answer, get it for them. I've found through the years that customers don't actually expect a salesman to know everything, but do expect the salesman to be able to find out the answer in a timely manner. As long as you know where to get the information that is needed, that will work as well as knowing it yourself. What turns me off is a salesman that has no clue but tries to BS his way around and that I take as an insult. When I want information, I go to an expert. That is why most people are coming into a Real Gun Shop instead of shopping at the big box stores where they can not get any reliable information and help. My buddy turns to me as shows for help with areas that I know better than him and I turn to him for answers I don't know. We work well together and have a lot of repeat customers because people know we will provide them a service. Contrary to popular belief, most people will pay for service and are not always out to just get the cheapest price. Your job as a salesman is to make sure they get a bigger bang for their buck at your store than somewhere else. Salesmanship 101.
     
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