Selling a service is different from selling a product. Selling a service involves making more of a human connection and a commitment because what you are selling is more than an object. Selling a service, even when selling installation of a product, includes understanding the customer and selling the personality, knowledge, and skills of those who will be providing the service.
Effectively selling a service includes giving very honest, helpful and free advice. While strong, pushy and forward sales tactics can work to sell a product, this tactic usually won’t work when selling a service and most certainly will prevent a sale from moving into a long term ongoing service relationship. If your business sells a service, a different approach is critical.
In fact, it is possible to stand out and even win over a customer because you approach a service sale differently, the right way. One business that sells differently is Ethos Windows and Doors. Bill White, the founder of Ethos, saw things could be done a lot better. He left employment of one large service provider to start his own window and door company so that he could be free to sell through relationship building rather than high pressure sales. He knew by taking a better approach to communicating with potential customers, understanding what their needs are and then backing this up with excellent service delivery, he could make the whole experience much more pleasant for customers and fill a void left by others in the industry.
Take a hint from Bill’s success and adopt better sales practices in your business. Here are a few things you can do to make your sales team a little less abrasive and with any luck get a few more sales:
1. When someone makes a statement that would move towards ending the conversation let it go. Either they have made up their mind and simply don’t want to have to say “no”, or they really do need to think about all the information you have already given them. If the latter is true you can often do more harm than good by getting a bit pushy and aggressive. If you have brochures or informative materials, giving these to the prospect and then making a timely exit can the best next step. The brochure you leave with them will put your best foot forward, give them the time and space they need and provide them with your contact information for when they make up their mind.
2. Once the customer has expressed that they want to purchase your products or services you can stop selling. Your sales routine will wear on the customer and you only risk moving the sale in the wrong direction. Once they want to buy, focus on completing the transaction. At this point, instead of pushing the benefits of your best energy efficient windows and doors you can ask them for a time to bring out your exterior door installation specialist. Continue to be friendly and answer any questions, but there is no need to keep selling.
3. Instead of trying to be persuasive, try to understand what the customer is looking to get from the transaction. Then you can take an educational approach to your sales. If you focus on what the customer’s needs and you address these needs, you will build credibility as an expert in your field. Once you have demonstrated that you are an expert and recommend the right products and services, you can also be the source for those goods. In the case of Ethos Windows and Doors this means understanding that what the customer really wants is a quick, affordable and professional installation that will offer lasting, measurable energy savings.
Ethos Windows and Doors focuses on treating customers right, understanding their needs and educating them about their options. Rather than a traditional sales approach, Ethos prefers to help prospective customers make informed decisions regarding how to get the most attractive, affordable and best energy efficient windows and doors.