"Good Morning America" teamed up with Reader's Digest on a special series, "13 Things Experts Won't Tell You." This month, Reader's Digest unveils the secrets your sales clerk won't tell you on how to find the best deals in the store and more.
1. The greeters who welcome you to our store aren't really there to greet you. If we look you in the eye as you're coming and going, you're less likely to shoplift.
2. I won't ask a yes-or-no question like "Can I help you?" Instead, it's always an open-ended "What can I help you find today?"
3. Many retailers count the shoppers who come in, then calculate the percentage who actually buy something. If I don't "convert" enough browsers to buyers, I hear from my district manager.
4. New merchandise goes at the front of the store, bargains at the back. The endcaps on the back side of aisles at Target, for instance, usually have items 15 to 75 percent off. If you want a deal, try to figure out when your favorite retailer does its markdowns. Some do them on Thursdays or Fridays, others at the end of the month.
5. When you ask me if something looks good on you and I suggest a different style, take the hint.
6. Sure, I'll put that sweater on hold for you. But most of the time, you don't come back. So don't blame me if I sell it to someone else.
7. My pet peeve? Customers who paw through a stack of shirts. Now I've got to spend 15 minutes board-folding that whole pile again.
8. Even though most of us don't work on commission, sometimes we're given a salesgoal for each customer. If we meet it consistently, we'll get bonuses and, eventually, a promotion. So when I tell you about a pair of earrings that would go perfectly with that sweater, I might have an ulterior motive.
9. Please don't tell the cashier no one was helping you after I brought you six different sweaters in the fitting room. It's rude.
10. Plenty of stores have great prices on Black Friday, but mine isn't one of them. Still, you line up and wait for us to open.
11. What is it about fitting rooms that brings out the worst in people? You stick gum to the walls and even leave dirty diapers in there.
12. After you buy something, keep your receipt and pay attention. Most mainstream retailers promise a refund if the item goes on sale within a certain number of days after you buy it. Websites like priceprotectr.com track the prices of hundreds of products from retailers such as Best Buy, Amazon, and Sears.
13. With savings clubs, e-mail deals, coupons, Internet discount codes, and other incentives, fewer and fewer people are paying full price.
14. If a good customer buys a dress, I'll hang it up for her and put it in a nice plastic bag. But if you've been rude to me, I'll smush it into a bag that's too small.
15. It is way tacky to buy placemats, use them for your party, then return them to the store. At least wipe off the food crumbs first.
16. If you don't know a store's hours, call. We hate the people who come in five minutes before we close and want to shop for a whole wardrobe.
17. Some of us will tell you anything to make the sale. Especially if you haven't been nice.
18. Literally everyone who returns anything broken claims it broke the first time they used it, no matter when they purchased it. Um, yea right.
19. If you want some extra attention or you need something special, call ahead and see if the store will let you make an appointment for a private visit. In a lot of stores, especially upscale ones, clerks are willing to open a little early or stay there a little late for a loyal customer.
20. Everything gets marked down eventually. Watch and wait for the discount, then pounce.
21. Outlet stores likely sell special outlet merchandise, and it's not the deal you expect.
22. If I'm $200 from my sales goal and having a tough day, and you ask me if it's going to be cheaper tomorrow, I may lie.
More 13 Things from Reader's Digest: