Pros of Retail Commission
1. Motivates Great Service
Any commission incentivizes better customer service. Each salesperson benefits from the sale just like you do. Ideally, you find a way to structure the system to maximize this effect. In turn, great service leads to more faithful customers and positive word of mouth, leading to more increases in sales down the road.
2. Encourages Teamwork
Team-based commission structures can quickly foster more camaraderie and bonding among your staff. It also ensures that staff training for new members will be thorough. Each of your veteran employees wants new members to be just as successful as they are.
3. Rewards Your Best Employees
Your commission system should incentivize excellent work ethic and performance. And with a system that fits your business, you’ll be able to easily and regularly reward your top employees. This keeps a happy team and lowers your staff turnover. It also attracts the best salespeople on the market.
4. Pay Based on Performance
There are varying levels, but basically, commission is a form of a retailer paying for a service. And it can be much easier to measure and far less frustrating than a flat salary. Salaries are hard to alter and can lead to a complacent attitude and lackluster performance.
5. Help Promote New Products
Many salespeople are wary of selling unproven new products. No one wants to face an unsatisfied customer. In order to help push new products, specific commissions by product can encourage your team to get out there and sell.
6. Offers a Flexible Schedule
Flexibility in one’s work is a clear motivator and drives better office morale. With commission-based pay, you can afford to give your staff the flexibility they desire. After all, if they aren’t working hard, they aren’t being paid (or at least not their full salary). As long as you set an appropriate base salary to commission ratio, this will be another added bonus to your commission system.
7. Increases Sales
This goes without having to say, but we’ll say it anyway. With any change to the structure of your business, the end goal is always to increase your sales. This is no different with commission. And in this case, your employees are benefitting along with you!
Cons of Retail Commission
The potential benefits of implementing a successful commission system in your workplace are staggering. But there are certainly some downsides, and, if not done well, some potential consequences for your retail business.
1. Aggressive Sales
No one likes a pushy salesperson. It’s annoying, even intimidating, and a quick way to lose a lot of customers. Of course, with any incentive for more money, your employees will want to make each and every sale. So it’s important to have guidelines and protocols laid out from the start. Monitor the performance of each team member and make sure they are staying respectful of all customers.
2. Competitive Workplace
A race for the most sales can lead to arguments, a poor atmosphere and resentment among your staff. You want to take advantage of that positive attribute mentioned above: great teamwork. Don’t go the other direction and sow discord among your employees. Additionally, try to keep commission rates confidential. Differences in pay are another quick way to foster a negative workspace.
3. Discourages Employee Growth
Servers at restaurants are the classic example of this. Often, pay structures favor tipped employees over management. Avoid this if possible. You want to encourage your best staff to grow within your business and learn new roles and skills.
4. Neglect Other Duties
Each staff member should have a variety of tasks. That includes your sales team. But with too much financial incentive on simply making sales, this can often lead to them forgetting or refusing to complete other important parts of their role.
5. Poor Job and Income Security
The first people to be out of work during an economic downturn are those in sales. Customers are more likely to live within their means and spend less. In this scenario, commission-based pay can leave your sales team out of a job.
Even in good times, however, income can easily fluctuate month to month. While some personal financial planning can help alleviate some of this stress , it’s still not an optimal situation for any staff member. (Note: some retailers offer “draw against commission.” This means that they will pay a minimum amount, even if commission standards aren’t met in a certain month. In turn, the employer will draw against future commission value to pay themselves back.)
6. Lessened Profitability
If not executed well, a commission structure can damage your business. It can scare customers away, create poor teamwork, encourage infighting, and lead to a lower performance from your sales team. These are all avoidable casualties, but ones to keep in mind as you implement and measure this system.
Get the Pros and Avoid the Cons with Your Commissions in Retail
Closely monitor the performance and results of your commission structure. Your retail POS system should offer reporting and analysis to help illuminate trends and provide actionable data. Use this insight to make changes before it’s too late, and always strive to improve your small business. Give us a call today to learn more about KORONA POS and schedule a demo today!