A Closer Look    Chanel

Top Tips for Building a Relationship With a Chanel Sales Associate

Insider tips to ensure a fruitful relationship with your SA

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The ever-elusive Chanel relationship is like finding last year’s impossible to track down Caramel Chanel 19. At first, it appears easy to find, but it’s nearly impossible. With a brand as shrouded in mystery as Chanel, it’s no wonder it can feel hard to connect with sales associates (SA for short). I do, however, have some tips to ensure a successful relationship with a Chanel SA.

How to Build a Successful Relationship With Your Chanel SA

BE ON TIME

I truly cannot stress this enough. When your SA sets up a designated time for you, they’re running on a schedule and must prepare for your visit and visits from other clients too. Just like you wouldn’t be late for a date with your significant other, don’t be late for an appointment with your SA.

Give them space

Be mindful that your SA has a million things going on and can’t always drop everything to assist you. Whether it’s a physical client in the boutique holding their attention or they’re simply off, they will get back to you in a timely manner. You don’t want to be that client that calls 10 times in 5 minutes.

Loyalty is key

Have you ever wondered how that one person you follow ALWAYS gets the bag of the season, those sold-out Dad sandals, or, best of all…a gift? Hint, they’re shopping with one SA consistently. The best allocations and gifts are given to loyal clients who shop with one SA and one boutique. You know how your favorite coffee shop just knows your preferred order and always knows to have it ready for you? Similarly, at Chanel, the more loyalty you show by shopping with the same SA, the greater the perks.

As you continue to build your profile, your status changes based on your spending. Starting with an annual $20,000 spend, a client is deemed “elite+,” and certain perks will apply as you progress. It starts with being invited to in-store events, birthday gifting, and eventually, as you grow as a client, it leads to holiday gifting and show invites.

Attitude is NEVER acceptable

It’s understandable that no one wants to wait in a line or that they’re annoyed that their dream item is sold out. Please take a moment to place yourself in your SA’s shoes and remember that they’ve been dealing with less than friendly clients all day. As the old adage goes, “you’ll attract more flies with honey than vinegar,” and that truly means something.

It’s actually quite shocking these days if you listen closely to client interactions because rarely are the words ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ uttered anymore. However, SA’s and their managers who decide on gifts and allocations notice these things.

Research, Research, Research!

Chanel is the only luxury brand where clients need to research well in advance of what they want to be able to secure these items. You know when that collection is presented? Well, that’s a good time to take a photo to alert your SA. If you’re already an established client, they’ll be able to order that piece specifically for you, and if you’re a new client, they’ll be able to reserve it for you as the collection approaches.

Don’t forget that Chanel has 6 client-ready collections per year, and by the time you see someone post it in an unboxing, it’s more than likely sold out in boutiques. After all, Chanel is the only brand that deems 8 collections necessary every year.

As a reminder, they are as follows in terms of release in a calendar year, Spring/Summer Pre-Collection, Spring/Summer Runway, Pre-Fall, Fall/Winter Pre-Collection, Fall/Winter Runway, and Cruise. Each collection is launched every 2 months, and once these seasonal items sell out, they’ll never return in the same fashion.

Visit but don’t stalk

The pandemic has drastically changed the shopping habits of the world. If you’re a new client, you’ll have to put in some time to get to know your SA and for them to know you. After all, it will take some time to click with your dream SA. Like dating, you may not meet your perfect match right away, so meet different SA’s and see whose style you prefer.

Once you’ve established that magic chemistry with your SA, now you need to get them to remember you. Start out with requesting an appointment with your SA, mentioning items you’d like. Then follow up by visiting once or twice a month. SA’s are constantly juggling hundreds of clients every week, so you must be remembered, but for the right reasons. The top clients of all brands rarely step foot in stores these days because they’ve established that rapport with their SA’s so that they are always considered for items before the public.

Appreciation

My final piece of advice. Your SA is human and just wants to be appreciated as such. A little gesture such as a note or a cup of coffee means the world to your SA and helps them remember you when that special piece comes into the boutique.

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Irene
Irene
2 years ago

Did you really just give us all a tutorial on how to kiss a sale clerk’s ass while we are the ones in there about to drop thousands?
Top thing on the “million things to do” list is help a customer. They can dust the shelves later

Avisha
Avisha
2 years ago
Reply to  Irene

That is exactly what I was thinking!!

Jennie
Jennie
2 years ago
Reply to  Irene

Sales clerk? Clearly you have no understanding about luxury brand service. They are educated and well informed people who are there to help you with their brand. If you want a sales clerk push add to cart on Amazon for your CHONEL bag and dusty tweed knocks.

Natalie
Natalie
2 years ago
Reply to  Jennie

I’ve heard many consumers of luxury brands use the term “Sales Clerk” vs. “Sales Associate”, etc. It isn’t meant as disrespect, as you are implying.

Silly
Silly
2 years ago
Reply to  Irene

I love you

psny15
psny15
2 years ago
Reply to  Silly

So true ❤️

love corgis
love corgis
2 years ago
Reply to  Irene

Your comment seems to imply that because you have money that you should have your “ass kissed”.

Mary
Mary
2 years ago
Reply to  love corgis

I think what she’s trying to say is it should not take all this effort to secure an item that costs many thousands more than it should. The reason we are willing to pay so much is to get good service at the boutique not the other way around !

Irene
Irene
2 years ago
Reply to  love corgis

No, doesn’t imply that at all. Sorry your confused. I’m not kissing anyone’s butt just because I’m in a fancy store and therefore bow down and be careful I don’t disturb a sales associate by asking for help.. especially if I’m going to buy a 5,000.00 bag.. make sense now?

psny15
psny15
2 years ago
Reply to  love corgis

Sales reps should help everyone – its called good customer service

gaiac
gaiac
2 years ago
Reply to  psny15

God I don’t think they are paid enough to deal with people with attitude like you

Liza
Liza
2 years ago
Reply to  Irene

Since when is being a decent human being and showing respect kissing ass? You sound entitled to having your own ass kissed. As someone who is an Hermes collector, I understand the headaches some SAs go through with clients like you.

Irene
Irene
2 years ago
Reply to  Liza

your presumptiousness must serve you so well in life. I’m going to ask for help. I’m not going to cower and be self continuous to ask for it just because I’m on Chanel. Make sense? Worked in retail and no matter WHAT, you help a customer first thing. Numero uno priority . Same goes for Chanel. This article is implying I behave and don’t ask for help. Why?

Fashionpie88
Fashionpie88
2 years ago

My take after reading the below feedback. To each her own.

Meaning if you (a) have excess cash to spend yearly (b) feel that only by carrying designer bags or donning designers clothing then it’s living (c) there is always a must-have seasonly – then by all means focus on building a Biz relationship with a sales staff.

However make no mistake that there is anything more than mutual benefits. You die to have their bags and they your money.

If you dropped dead suddenly dun think the SA will send a wreath to mourn at your funeral. Or is it Chanel or Hermes store policy to do so in appreciation of blind loyalty and years of patronage, spending heaps of money to buy “unnecessary” items in order to secure the It bag.

Conversely if you have save and skim on life to save up to buy an It Bag hoping that it will bring you to the next “status” level, it would not either.

That should not stop you from pampering yourself. Dun need appointment, just show up and ask nicely. If they “dun have” then it’s not meant to be. Or try again next time after another round of 20% price increase.

Honestly there is so much one to do with $8500 besides buying a Chanel Jumbo classic.

At 56 years old I really think its vulgar to focus and obsessed over bags that is only a transient part of life. Dun get me wrong I used to be “obsessed” about bags too.

Overtime I have reprioritised Health above everything else. What’s the point in having an enviable bag collection that you are too sick to tote. Or can’t bring with for a yearly holiday abroad to destress and open your eyes/horizon…

psny15
psny15
2 years ago
Reply to  Fashionpie88

Well said ❤️

Natalie
Natalie
2 years ago
Reply to  Fashionpie88

You keep referencing “Dun”; what does this mean?

Shadow
Shadow
2 years ago
Reply to  Natalie

It means “don’t”
You have da read the context and you can figure it out.

Natalie
Natalie
2 years ago
Reply to  Shadow

I read the context, but why do I “have to figure out what is being said”? Stop being lazy and write “don’t” and not “Dun”. FYI: “Dun” doesn’t mean “don’t”. It actually means “the color of a horse” or “marked by dullness and drabness”. Use words in their proper context; don’t be an adolescent who makes up their own language that only they can understand. 🙄

Vaness
Vaness
2 years ago

The fact that I have to strategically fake relationship with a sales person is just weird. I am buying leather goods in exchange for a lot of money. On top of it I have to make sure I have kiss their behind ? I am always as a moral conduct nice to people and kind but I’m not going to beyond that . If they don’t want to sell me a bag I’ll go to a another designer house. Also considering Hermès sells bags to rappers and anywho ; I don’t think image they’re trying to create has any legs to stand on.

Preston
Preston
2 years ago
Reply to  Vaness

What’s wrong with the business of “rappers and anywho”?

TKS
TKS
2 years ago

Clearly the writer of this post has NO CLUE about Chanel. Zero. Nada. Zilch. Exactly NONE of this is true. 20k gets you NOTHING. Since SA get no commission from leather goods, they really don’t care how much you spend on leather goods. There is no benefit for them other than MAYBE a few hundred dollars at end of year team bonus. Sales quotas are only based on RTW, fine jewelry or watches, not leather goods, costume jewelry & shoes.

SA do not want to get to know you. They really don’t care about you. They don’t want to meet with you. They won’t want to know your preferences. They don’t want you to waste their time. They don’t want coffee and donuts. Text them your credit card, tell them what you want, pay for it, don’t return it or engage in any kind of rhetoric, move on.

I am pretty mortified that PB would even post something as totally inaccurate as this.

Writer: maybe before assuming you can write based on expertise, become an actual expert…err… Chanel customer first. SMH.

LMM
LMM
1 year ago
Reply to  TKS

That is actually not true. The Chanel Fashion Advisors do want to get to know you. Mine always asks me to lunch and has taken me to dinner and shows with the client service advisor. I really just want clothes and bags, I do not need all that, nor do I have a lot of free time but I want to be respectful. My boutique is very nice to me and if that’s what they want the fashion advisers to do with clients than I do say yes if I’m available.

Jerri R
Jerri R
2 years ago
Reply to  TKS

I did notice the way RTW, fine jewelry, and watch customers are preferred from the fact that they don’t need to line up outside the store, whereas leather goods etc customers have to stand in line like at a soup kitchen during the Depression Era.

LMM
LMM
1 year ago
Reply to  Jerri R

It doesn’t matter what you are buying. Unless you have an appointment you have to stand in line. The people who do not stand in line have a fashion advisor at the boutique or Customer Service can make you an appointment even if you don’t have a fashion advisor at the boutique

Ann
Ann
2 years ago

Some of this is common sense courtesy, like don’t be late to an appointment.

But some of it is completely pretentious and off-putting to me as a shopper. Especially this: “Then follow up by visiting once or twice a month. SA’s are constantly juggling hundreds of clients every week, so you must be remembered, but for the right reasons. ” Umm, I’M constantly juggling hundreds of priorities every week, so the brand needs to work to earn time in my head, not the other way around. It’s perverse how the scarcity marketing tactic has gotten us to this point where customers need to “sell” salespeople on giving them service. No disrespect to SAs, but I don’t write cute notes, buy coffee, or pre-plan a year’s worth of meetings just to get in the good graces of anyone I buy from – not my mechanic, not my barista, not my attorney, not my accountant, not my financial advisor, etc. And some of those are relationships that actually MAKE me money lol.

Natalie
Natalie
2 years ago

Is this a joke? I have Chanel SA’s all over the U.S.A. that I’ve developed professional relationships and if one can’t find something another one can. I know my info is in a data base and it’s obvious what I’m buying and with whom, but who cares? A sale is a sale! Chanel has never reprimanded me and said “you must be loyal to one SA, only”.

Hermes, on the other hand has stricter policies; but, my SA, for the past 15 years, has always come through for me so I don’t need to look elsewhere.

Miss Tia
Miss Tia
2 years ago

Morning All…so, I am a SA w/45yrs experience – to a hard-working educated SA it is a bit of an insult to be referred to as “a clerk,” which is defined as someone who stands around waiting for someone to hand them their next meal. Underpaid? Hardly. I believe we are a bit overpaid…even “a clerk” working in a luxury store can make 60K+ really good SA’s make up tp 200K and more.

Attitude? Honestly, I believe many overpaid SA’s have way too much of it. Lastly, the “@ss kissing” Shopping luxury – no matter if one is a frequent flier or a once in a lifetime purchase, you should ALWAYS expect to be treated as royalty; and, if you are not getting that experience, you should find a SA who is more concerned about you than themselves!

BTW. all said definitely does not lend an attitude to the guests either!

Naomi
Naomi
2 years ago

Here’s my POV on this: The article to me holds true to those who perhaps are willing to spend the $$$ per year to be be recognized and remembered by their SA’s. But will the same be true if someone like me came perhaps once a year and bought maybe one max 2 bags….don’t think so. But what I really want to point out is that if SA relation is key how come we hear stories on purseforum where people have been put on waitlists for particular color/style only to find out that on IG there are tons of resellers domestic and international cashing on that craze and selling them at a premium.

psny15
psny15
2 years ago
Reply to  Naomi

Astute observations – I get good customer service but there is a sense of entitlement among some of the sales folk in the city – they think they are better than the customers they serve which is not the case – everyone is equal – nothing 🙌🏼irritates me more than sales folk on their phones

Mary
Mary
2 years ago
Reply to  psny15

Unfortunately that sense of superiority and anti is not confined to Chanel. Actually my worst experiences have been with Cartier SA’s. No matter how respectful I am there seems to be no good way to talk to them without eliciting a very unhelpful attitude! saddening

psny15
psny15
2 years ago
Reply to  Mary

if a sales associate has an attitude I just leave and go to an alternate store, it’s rather sad as a good sales associate can make this experience for shoppers pleasurable!

Thefeels
Thefeels
2 years ago
Reply to  psny15

Maybe they’re on their phones because basic bitches harass them 247 the next “it” color bag.

cjj
cjj
2 years ago

This may be how it is now due to Instagram/social media and the fakeness of many who put forth an “image” in order to gain fame and fortune but it wasn’t always like that. In fact, it still isn’t for me because I won’t partake in such silly games. Good manners should not come with a price tag; it should be the norm in all situations with all people. My SA is not my friend outside of the boutique nor am I hers. I am simply a person who spends money when I feel the need to and she is the one who provides me with the goods I request. Nothing more, nothing less.

Maxine
Maxine
2 years ago

Yes I agree, sales advisors never say please snd thank you these days, those with manners are a dying breed.

pursegirlinLA
pursegirlinLA
2 years ago

The only way to make sure you get the goods is to consistently buy RTW and high end jewelry as TKS has said. Do not be that client who asks only for annoying SLG’s and a pair of CC earrings-it is not even worth the SA’s time to look for it. The SA’s are given no time for client development because they don’t need to do it. Dropping by just to chat and see what’s new will not endear you to them. Things sell in a matter of minutes and the one-two hour line at the door means they can only spend time with you if you are buying.

Regarding loyalty, yes it’s everything. The SA’s know what their clients are up to-they can see if you have purchased from another SA, they know if you return an item elsewhere immediately, and if you are a chronic returner thats a problem too. No one may call you out on it perhaps but they will stop looking and trying to get you items. Chanel has made it very hard for the SA’s and customer service is not important in the least. Its all about selling the overpriced RTW. The worst thing you can do is to put yourself on multiple lists and then not take things when your turn comes because you couldn’t wait, and one came in elsewhere sooner. You need to have patience.

If you really want to get things, you’ll need to put your money on the table. Realize you’ll need to guarantee it with a credit card or pay for it with a deposit up front. Chanel does not give exact delivery dates and things do get delayed. If you need to have it right now, or you are the kind of person who won’t reserve things….you’ll miss out on most of the best items.

You are not their friend. The moment you stop buying, it’s over. Most of the SA’s are fed up and overworked. Cut them some slack, be loyal, buy your things and move on.

Jerri R
Jerri R
2 years ago

“Magic chemistry” OMG LOL

Stefania Abrego
Stefania Abrego
2 years ago

I have known my Chanel SA for 15 years. There were some years that i was buying 1 bag a month plus accessories before starting my family. And now i’m at 1 or 2 bags a year.. she still messages me for every holiday and when i do go in, it is like i’m back home haha. I’m sure she hopes that i will some day get back to buying as much as i was. But she doesn’t show it 🙂

Louie
Louie
2 years ago

Can we just agree that any genuine relationship is reciprocal? Doesn’t matter if it’s your husband, your children, your boss, your cleaner or your SA – people can tell if you have respect for them or not and will treat you accordingly in return.

I feel like sometimes we get caught up in hierarchies, entitlement and other nitty gritty whilst forgetting that at the end of the day, we’re all just human beings trying to survive – including the author of this post who was simply trying to come up with some content for you all.

gaiac
gaiac
2 years ago

I’m sure they will miss the $400 of your hard earned money you spent on a pair of Chanel earrings per year

Jun
Jun
2 years ago

Since when is being honest about having manners moronic? Perhaps you can’t comprehend the point of the article. DON’T be an entitled ass. DO ACT LIKE A DECENT HUMAN.

Jasmine
Jasmine
2 years ago

This is ridiculous. It’s literally the job of SAs to make me feel welcome and valued, not the other way around. I pay you to give me an experience and sell me a product. If I didn’t spend my money at your store, you wouldn’t be able to pay your rent, babe.

Paris
Paris
2 years ago
Reply to  Jasmine

Babe, take that £50 you wanted to spend on perfume, roll the notes and shove right up. No body wants you or your money. Have a great day.

Sarah
Sarah
2 years ago
Reply to  Jasmine

Your comment is fairly condescending “if I didn’t spend my money at your store, you wouldn’t be able to pay your rent, babe”. I agree that you should be made to feel welcome, but if YOU don’t buy their product(s) they still will be able to pay their rent “babe”. “Respect” is a double edge sword and you get what you give.

Fiona Fymk
Fiona Fymk
2 years ago

Oddly, never needed to ‘build a relationship’ with a sales assistant. They are the ones building their relationship with me – by asking for my social media and then messaging me the limited edition items regularly. All the girls want to hear is ‘yes I like this, will drop by today to look when I am free.” I don’t even need to make an ‘appointment’.

I don’t waste my time window shopping or taking up their time to do ‘small talk’. They have better things to do, and so do I.

OCOCD
OCOCD
2 years ago

Kindness and loyalty really go a long way. My SA is a dream come true and we only started our relationship less than a year ago.

Maxine1235
Maxine1235
1 year ago

This is sooo silly. Those bags cost way less to make and they are selling them many times over the premium. Companies such as Hermes and Chanel create artificial scarcity by claiming these are rare commodities rival to natural gemstones. The crazy thing is people are buying the nonsense. I went to a restaurant and the whole place was proliferated with the same Chanel flap bags. My no name bag is much more stylish and definitely more rare. To each his own but I would rather buy true rare gems like rubies, emerald and colored diamonds!