Apple may be taking a slightly different approach to selling the Apple Watch in store than they have with any of their previous devices.
Apple is reportedly training its employees to focus on building relationships with customers and making fashion recommendations to get them the right Apple Watch. Apple employees will be going through training that will give them various examples of interactions with customers to help them decide which Apple Watch and band would be best for them.
Through building a relationship with the customer and better understanding their use of the device, their style and fashion needs it will make the selection process easier. Employees are being instructed to make comments like "the white strap looks great on you" and "you seem to have a fun style. I think the Pink Sport band would match your style perfectly." Apple will also offer various guidelines for making the selection, per 9to5Mac:
- Make comments about why you think an option is a good choice rather than discussing why an option may not be a good choice.
- Explain how earlier customers made decisions between models.
- Use other accessories [already] on a customer as examples for which model would look best.
- If the customer is with another person, make sure to get the opinion of that person on which model should be purchased.
- Don't focus on price as a reason to recommend an option because many customers may be willing to spend more for a model that makes them feel good.
Apple wants to take the focus away from the core functionality of the watch, as well as the price point, and focus on how it adds to their current style. Understanding why, and for whom, the watch is being purchased for will also help employees in the decision process. Beginning April 10 Apple will begin allowing customers to try the Apple Watch on in-store, giving people a chance to check it out before placing an order.
The focus on style isn't terribly surprising — we've seen Apple Watch appear on the cover of several fashion magazines over the past few months with little emphasis on the functionality of the smartwatch. The practical differences between the various models of Apple Watch — from the $349 Apple Watch Sport to the mid-tier steel Apple Watch to the range-topping $10,000+ Apple Watch Edition — are minor. The software's the same, the display and battery life are different between the two sizes but otherwise the same across the line, and aside from a more durable display covering and a change in the material of the casing, the physical differences are nil. Why you'd choose one Apple Watch over another is a matter of pricing and how much you're willing to spend — and Apple's apparently hoping that flattering your personal style will get you open your wallet a bit wider.