Acknowledging a costumer's existence can increase your sales.
Will you forgive me a mini-rant? I hope so, because I'm going to do it anyway. Customer service SUCKS in this town (maybe everywhere). Latest example:
Last night I went to Belks to look at shoes. Now, I'm not even sure they carry much in my size but I thought I'd try, since they are now the biggest bestest department store in town (Sears' shoe dept is very small; Penny's hardly carries anything in my size and was a sucky dept with rude service last time I looked, about 8 years ago.) So I look around a few minutes and start picking up shoes. One associate passes as he's putting shoes back in the displays, I think he said "hi". I end up with 4 shoes in my hand that I want to try on and want to ask if s/he can bring out anything similar in my size. (I know it's asking a lot of a clerk to have some idea of their stock but hey, why not try?) I stood about 4 feet back and to the side of the register counter and a couple of feet from a row of chairs, facing the register, attempting to make eye contact with a sales clerk. One is ringing up a sale, one put up a couple of shoes on the other half of the dept but mostly stood at the contour, the other two are putting shoes up, straightening up, etc. One of them looks at me, no eye contact, walks on, offers to help another customer, puts the shoe(s) where they belong, and returns to the counter. I stood there for several minutes in total. I put the shoes in a chair and said, mostly to myself, 'if they don't want to sell me shoes, fine I don't need buy shoes,' and leave the store. BTW, this was at approximately 5:15 (no where near closing time) and there were six-eight people in the non-"selfserve" part of the dept, only one of whom was actually trying on shoes while I was there. (Clearance shoes are stacked on tables.)
Maybe I've missed a change in how one suppose to get a shoe department associate's attention? Am I now suppose to walk into the stock room myself? Hit a clerk over the head with a shoe to get his attention? The stand near counter and/or chairs with shoes in hand has always worked before. Needless to say it will be awhile before I hit up thier shoe department again.