It is always important to have various sales techniques and styles in your sales tool chest. We will get into these styles and I would suggest you add some of these styles to you tool chest since there are different types of people out there and when you can relate to various people then you can close more sales.
This type of selling refers to building up the value of your product. Value-based selling is a textbook type of selling. I mean it is what is normally taught to someone who is starting out in sales. It is great for personal, residential, or public selling. It is not so good for B2B sales. Although it can work for B2B sales depending on the product.
Value-based selling works best when your product is competitive in its price so instead of focusing on the price you want to focus on the value that you can offer. The value is what stands out between you and your competitor. For an example when I was selling triple play package deals for home phone, internet, and TV service. We had all the same channels as the competitor. We had the same internet, and of course, a phone is a phone. So basically why would someone switch services if it was all the same thing at the end of the day? So we had to emphasize the value. What made my product better. That leads me into the old saying “features tell, benefits sell”.
First and foremost we had to ask questions. We had to find out what did they enjoy watching TV? What programs did they watch? What programs did they might lack that maybe we had? Were all there TV’s capable of getting all the channels? As far as internet, what did their online usage consist of? Did they stream a lot since our internet was the fastest compared to the competitor? Once I found out the info I was able to give the customer a value based recommendation. This is one of the most effective ways to sell since you are confirming the value of your product around the customer’s needs
Consultative selling is most useful for B2B type selling but is getting common with public selling. Consultative selling requires you to do your homework. You are more of a consultant offering guidance more than the stance of haggling with the buyer. Generally, the buyer is going to know what they want but needs you as an insider to get the options presented to them. For an example when a real estate agent is selling a home you might have a buyer that already knows what house they want but needs you to open the door and get them access to view the homes they want. Generally speaking, your buyer is going to have done a lot of homework so you must be well verse since you don’t want to be the sales agent who does not know anything. Since you have the experience this will give you more of expertise that you can not find in an article or a blog. You should have more specific knowledge that will pertain to your buyer and product. This should give you an edge over any info they have. It is important to not be confrontational but more like praising them for the info that has gathered.
The key to closing in this type of selling is gathering all the info that gives you. There will be a Freudian slip that may come out. They are going to give you what they are looking for or what is their ideal position after they make the buying decision. A key is also to separate yourself from the competition. Why should they buy from you instead of someone else? What do you offer that your competition can not? These are the types of things that will help you close the sale in this style.
One last thing in consultative selling is building a strong relationship with your buyer. Your buyer should have some loyalty to you because they should look at you as a friend helping them get the best advice and deal possible. They should be able to trust you so they don’t want to have to go somewhere else and start over. Most likely if they are working with you it took some time to develop a relationship and they should not want to start over again.
I wanted to briefly talk about order takers. This is the type of selling that someone calls up and just places an order with you. Someone else may have done the work or they just received a flyer and you did not do any type of selling. One thing is for sure that no self-respecting sales agent would ever consider themselves an order taker. Order takers simpling take orders and do no selling.
Aggressive selling is probably one of the least effective ways of selling. Where I come from we called it slamming customers and I think that term originated from the days when the telephone companies were deregulated and sales reps use to slam customers and change their long distance services aggressively.
Aggressive selling is when you insinuate that customers have to change their service in some form or fashion.
It can be even less aggressive as not giving a proper interview and just assume the customer will change based on price or a particular feature you offer.
- Feature-Based Selling
Feature-based selling is a form of aggressive selling because you are not asking questions and trying to figure out the benefits that your customers need. Generally speaking, this type of selling is based on a feature or product that the sales reps are comfortable selling. So you are kind of just hoping the customer is going to want the specific feature you are most comfortable in presenting. This process is like throwing something against the wall and hoping it sticks. This is very unprofessional.
With all that being said this being a horrible process it can eventually get a sale and I have seen many people use this style. Since you didn’t properly present your product you didn’t really win over the customer this type of selling causes cancels.
- Price Based Selling
Price Based Selling is another style of aggressive selling but only trying to win over the customer on having the lower price then what the competitor is offering. Again this is a horrible way of selling but it can get you sales. The thing is that this form of selling will get you a lot of cancels. I have experienced this first hand. When I was selling these triple-play packages for home phone, internet, and TV service and if one of my sales reps aggressively sold on the price the customer would be more likely to call up the competitor and basically say “this company offered me this deal. So what can you do better?” 9 times out of 10 the competitor would not want to lose the customer and just offer a better price. Which in essence caused a cancel.
Types Of Selling That Is Best For You
The most effective type of selling is going to be your value-based selling and I don’t really see it going away. Although there is a strong case to say many reps are adapting to more of a consultative style of selling. The reason being is that most buyers have information right at their figure tips. So a well-informed buyer will do their homework and research exactly what they want before they talk to a sales rep. B2B sales have already adapted to this type of style and coach their sales reps on this style. Depending on your product and market would determine what is best for you.
The aggressive style doesn’t have a place too much in sales but is used by reps that just need to be trained better to ask questions and find out customers needs.