Written by: Curtis DeCora
Have you heard the phrase, "People like to buy, they don't like to be sold." This is true. I reference a new buyer, which I like to call, "Buyer 2.0" This is the buyer that is less trusting, less loyal, more demanding and more price sensitive. Unless we know how to nudge them, move them along a sales cycle, and motivate them by facilitating the process, we can sell more effectively.
Let's look at another topic. Consider the used car salesmen. I only mention them because they have a stereotype to be pushy. Take for example your last time purchasing a car. You were pushed and sold, and weren't informed, educated, nor assisted. Sound familiar? Sorry car salesmen. :D
Let's look at a few scenarios. When you walk into a brick and mortar store, you have roughly 10 feet of space before you reach the isles. Research indicates that consumers need 10 feet of space to orient themselves before making a decision on which way to move. Research also indicates that consumers will walk to the right 93% of the time, so the higher margin items are on the right side of the store. There is also a thing such as an, "Interception rate" which requires a sales person to ask you, "Can I help you find something?" By asking this simple question, sales goes up 28%. Victor Antonio states by offering 2 options, the consumer will always choose the smallest of the two. The reason for this, consumers today are less trusting, less loyal and more price sensitive. If you have a $100 item, and $1000 item - they will choose the $100 item (89%). If you insert a third option, $500 - now consumers are more apt to choose the middle option. On average, the consumers purchase the three items at a clip of small (68%), medium (21%), and large (11%).
Now, when we consider the process to sell without "selling", we have to consider the fact that people like to buy, but do not like to be sold. So, how do we make this happen?
Let me give you an example of a Sales Training client of mine. This individual sold SEO services. Their primary strategy was to offer a "Free Audit" of their search engine results. Once the process was complete, they had an extremely low rate of getting people to pay them to fix those challenges.
Here's what we did for them:
Free Audit = $0.00
Do-it-Yourself Guide = $197
Service Level 1 = $397/mo
Service Level 2 = $697/mo
Service Level 3 = $997/mo
Obviously the varying levels of service were more aggressive in helping them achieve greater search engine results. The solutions were more hands on, more granular, and more in-depth. As consumers are more price sensitive, we simply offered them a basic guide for "Value Centric Selling" which included how to build value with each solution. Their clients found that the DIY Guide was a great option, but there are margins of error in fulfilling the step-by-step process. Then, we consider the fact that they didn't have enough time, enough resources, enough know-how, and enough experience to know if this was done right, or done partially correct.
Next, we move them up the value ladder. These options are available to them and the expected results are dependent upon how much work is involved, how many keywords, how many competitors, and so on. Then, we quantified the value of the additional traffic. We took their free audits and turned them into revenues, simply by restructuring their process, workflow, and the sensitivity of need and urgency with the client.
The methodology involves nudging the prospect along the sales cycle to match their buying cycle, as it pertains to money, time, need, urgency, and trust. You have to find the right mix to ensure you're doing your due diligence and finding out what the prospect is looking for. When you find out what they're seeking, you have to match their price sensitivity, demand, loyalty and trust. Once you find the sweet spot, it isn't a matter of "selling" or pushing them anything, it is a matter of facilitating the decision based on facts, information and educational content. Furthermore, if you're able to quantify their investment, you're in a much more powerful posture to help them finalize the decision.
Superior Marketing Group
Curtis DeCora has helped start 61 businesses throughout the states of Wisconsin and Minnesota, as a consultant and business growth specialist. He has 10 years of B2B sales experience in the corporate and small business areas.