Lube. I love it. It’s the juice of nature, the stuff that makes you go on for a long time. The perfect addition to a good round o’ sex whether you’re by yourself or with others. It’s the glue that holds sexual encounters together while keeping you apart and it’s the perfect upsell product for your customers.
Yeah, upsell. Just about every purchase of a sex toy or other sex accoutrement should have some good ol’ lube on the receipt, too: every anal toy, every pack of condoms, every insertable gizmo, every toy that can be used on the outside, so basically, that means everything. Lube is like what tires are for cars… sure you can buy a car without tires but you won’t get very far driving it. Lube will let you slide on for many miles and hours of pleasure without that pesky burning sensation or testing the fragility of those rubbers you’ve been hanging on to beyond their expiration date.
Let’s look at lube, my favorite sex toy.
I’ll briefly go into the ingredients in lube right now ‘cuz it’s a great idea for another blog but I’m on a tear right now about upselling the stuff.
Water based lube has a variety of ingredients depending on what kind you buy. Typically, those ingredients include glycerin and water and a host of other things that your customer may or may not want in their lube such as parabens, propylene glycol, and others. There are organic lubes and natural lubes, both of which have subcategories like wearing the incredibly non-sexy FDA Organic symbol on its label (more on that in another blog). Natural is, well, whatever the company wants to say it is and if a consumer is more comfortable with wanting to purchase the lube that boasts “natural” on its label, then so be it.
Silicone based lube is another story. It has no water in it and is basically made up of three, long syllabled ingredients that are tricky to decipher. Basically, the chemical makeup of silicone lube is like little ball bearings that just roll on each other but don’t stick to one another. Or your skin. Or your toys. It has the qualities of an oil based lube but is latex (condom) compatible. But it’s oftentimes a bitch to wash off your hands especially when you have to use your fingers for things like putting in batteries, opening condom packets (thank god for teeth but that’s another thing), and a host of other in-the-moment sex tricks that you need agile (and un-siliconed) fingers for. Silicone lube is not my personal favorite but I know I’m significantly outnumbered because I know PLENTY of people who love it.
Then there’s the hybrid category which blends together the best qualities of silicone and water based lubricants in one handy bottle. It’s easy to wash off yet can stay pretty slippery at the same time. I like the hybrids, that’s for sure.
There’s a lot more to know about lubricants and like I said, I’ll get to that in another blog.
So, here are my suggestions for making the lube sale as easy as the McDonald’s clerk asking “You want fries wit dat?”
Have samples of lube where the customers can test them out first. I know a lot of you are thinking “yeah, but that’ll trash a bottle of lube for every one I open.” Yes, it does BUT I can guarantee that you’ll sell a lot more that way instead of having them sealed up so no one knows the difference between them. Besides which, a tester bottle will last a long time since only a couple of drops are used during testing.
Educate yourself about the properties of lube and the features and benefits of the different types. Gosh, I guess I better get crackin’ on that next blog just so you can. Stay tuned.
Have tissues readily available next to the testers so customers can wipe their digits after smearing lube over them and don’t forget to have a handy little trash can to put the used tissues in. A lot of general merchandise stores have handy little desktop trash cans you can easily fit on a shelf or table. And why not brand that little trash can with a sticker from your store on it? Hey, it could never hurt!
I’m sure you’ve tested lube yourself and do you remember how you did that? Most likely by putting a drop or two of it on the back of your hand and taking your opposite index finger and smearing it around to get an idea of how that lube will work. Well, guess what? I don’t know about you but when I use lube, it’s to cut down on friction when I’m doing my ins and outs and not when I’m massaging it on my body so a better way to accurately test it out is to do this…
First, have your customer make a fist with their thumb facing up. Squeeze a little lube into the middle of the fist – you won’t need that much. At this point, they’ll have no idea of what you’re doing. Then either have them point up with their other index finger or, if they’re there with a partner, have the partner hold THEIR index finger up. Guide their finger into the fist and before they realize what they’re doing, THEY’LL BE FUCKING THEIR FIST! Yes, THIS is the way lube is used and it will quickly determine if they like the slickness, the consistency, the feel, the (perhaps) stickiness, and all those other things that make a lube their soon-to-be favorite.
And everyone will laugh their asses off doing it.
At my bricks and mortar store, I’d always encourage a customer to buy a selection of lube packet samples of different brands that I’d put together in the store in a small, sealable plastic baggie. This would easily help the indecisive lube buyer have the opportunity to try out different lubes without having to invest in a whole bottle of something they might not actually like after buying it (never a good thing for the customer or the store). Ask your distributor what brands of lube offer this size which are typically referred to as “foils,” “pillows” or sample sizes. Usually, you can get them by the gross (144) and the prices can be pretty reasonable.
The small packets can be put together with packets of water based lubes, silicone based or put together a combination of both. I would package 6 different kinds with a sticker from my store on it and charge a fair price to encourage its purchase. I also told my customer to make sure they remember which one they were testing at the time because it’s really easy to have 6 little squished packets on the nightstand and forget about which one they liked the most. These sample packets were also great for traveling.
Speaking of which, make sure your store offers small bottles of lubricant under the TSA approved 3 oz if your customer is planning on a getaway. When they are up at the counter buying something that they may have mentioned was for that weekend scoot outta town, suggest they buy some lube with the “ya want fries wit dat?” enthusiasm while mentioning to them that you have lube in TSA friendly bottles. They will get exactly what you mean with your suggestion and often buy it then and there.
I am always amazed that stores will market their lube in one section only when we all know it can be used for many different things. How about having an anal lube section in… wait for it… the anal toy department?! That’s a light bulb moment! Cross market your lubes throughout the store with an assortment near the toy area and especially near the clit toy area of your store. Having lube to let your toy slip and slide on the delicate skin of your clit will bring many hours of pleasurable sensation without that irritating clit burn. Ouch.
If you happen to sell any kind of latex clothing, the kinkster customers will know that silicone lube not only helps getting into them more easily but also shines up latex really well. An easy opportunity to upsell in this department, too.
So there ya go. Selling lube should be one of the easiest things to do so stay well stocked, carry a wide variety, then let your customers slip into someone comfortable.