15 STRATEGIES FOR DEALING WITH RESISTANCE
1. Do something!
The worst that can happen is that the customer remains unconvinced and you lose a sale, a lost sale is guaranteed if you don’t attempt to deal with an objection. Alternatively the best that can happen is that the customer is persuaded by our response to go ahead. Expect customer concerns and experiment with ways to deal with them.
2. Change your tactics
If your customer isn’t convinced change your response. If they challenge your response they are at least interested, once you have convinced them they will probably become your best customers.
3. Back up and clarify
The prospect needs more information. Their doubts may be based on misunderstanding about your product or service. They don’t understand what’s in it for them. This is especially true when the customer has no previous experience of your product or service. You may need to focus on features and benefits in more depth.
4. Bypass the objection
Not all objections require an answer. The customer maybe voicing an opinion and simply wants you to acknowledge it.
CUSTOMER “I’ve never used this company before”
SALESPERSON “I understand your concern”
Once the customer is satisfied that you are really listening, you can continue.
5. Convince your customer that they are improving their current arrangements
You have to show enough benefits in the proposition for the customer to want to spend their money on what you are offering instead of what they had planned to do.
6. Rely on your sales instinct
Listen to what your customer is telling you. If you genuinely put their needs before your own you will know what is right for the customer and they will trust you to offer the appropriate solution.
7. Pre-empt their objection
You can stay in control of the sales conversation by bringing up likely objections (cost etc.) when you want to. It also deals with the objection before it has a chance to become a major obstacle.
“We are proud of the fact that we can offer such a high quality product at such an affordable price.”
8. Acknowledge that they can get a product or service cheaper elsewhere
Expect to hear this objection and be prepared with your answer.
CUSTOMER “I can get this product or one very similar cheaper elsewhere.”
SALESPERSON “I quite understand Mrs. Smith that customers look for three things when they purchase a product: quality, service and, of course lowest price. It’s my experience that no company can offer all three. Which of the three would be the least important to your organisation?”
9. Avoid argument
You are trying to persuade your customer to buy, not start a fight! Keep the objection in perspective. Remember that it is a request for information and you will be able to offer a reasonable response.
10. Let the customer finish
Encourage your customer to let him tell you the whole story behind their concern. If you only get half the story you might select the wrong response to change his feelings about the proposition. If you interrupt and jump in you could answer the wrong concern.
11. Question the objection
Be tactful and subtle. Gently question the customer’s objection to establish all the facts. Once you are sure that you have got the whole story you can answer the objection with confidence. Questioning also allows you to qualify the objection. If a customer bombards you with objections it is important to get to the heart of the real objection.
12. Keep your response short
Going into elaborate and excessive detail will make your customers feel that you are hammering them with unnecessary information. Keep it brief and simple.
13. Use persuasive words
Use words that have a positive convincing effect on customers. Examples are: Economical, recommended, genuine, guaranteed, advanced and reputable.
14. Go fishing
Not all objections are voiced. Customers may want to think about the proposition. Sometimes you will have to probe for the root cause of the reluctance to buy. Ask questions like:
“What are your main areas of concern?”
“What reservations do you have?”
15. Scarlett O’Hara
“No” is not a rejection of you personally. A customer may not have the money, need or information to justify buying. This does not mean that you are not a good salesperson. Tomorrow is another day.
Answers to objections
“I appreciate that you are a busy person. That is why I won’t take more than 15 minutes of your time. You deserve the chance, based on your busy schedule to evaluate what we have. I truly believe we may have something to benefit you.”
“I appreciate the fact that it is difficult to be interested in everything after a short telephone call, however I truly believe you will benefit by evaluating this first hand. All I need is 15 minutes. It’s a very small risk for a potentially large return.”
Already using the Competition
“…… there are many good products available. However, what we have is very different from anything on the market, which is why we are the number one company of our type in the UK. All I need is 15 minutes which will allow you time to evaluate the potential benefits.”
“You are exactly the type of person I like to see, as busy people like yourself are always looking for ways to accomplish more in less time. Perhaps, just perhaps, I can help you free up some valuable time. You really have no risks involved.”
Send me some information
“We have found that a concept such as ours can’t be really explained in a brochure. The best way is simply to take 15 minutes for you to evaluate what we can offer you.”
“We have a lot of info that we could send and it usually results in more questions from our customers. The best way is simply to take 15 minutes for you to evaluate what we can offer you.”
No money – Can’t afford it
“I can understand you wanting to avoid unnecessary expenses. All I’m asking is for you to evaluate what I have to offer. I really believe that once you have done that, the benefits, not to mention the cost reduction within your systems, will show you that we are not really talking about a cost but rather a short term investment. We guarantee it.”
“You will, of course, be the sole judge of whether or not we have something that will benefit you. However, I would suggest that before you make a final decision on whether we have a potential benefit for you let’s take 15 minutes so you can evaluate this first hand. I guarantee you I won’t waste your time.”
You’re wasting your time
“I never consider meeting with a business professional a waste of time. I believe once you have evaluated the potential benefits you may find what we are offering very interesting. There is no risk for perhaps a large gain.”
“…… in effect you are saying that you are not in the market for any of the traditional types of service at this time. Your thinking happens to be exactly like mine. I am the ultimate sceptic when it comes to sales calls, etc….most focus on concepts and theories and usually end up wasting your time. We introduce our clients to solutions. Why not invest 15 minutes to evaluate what we have. Perhaps, just perhaps, you will find out what the other businesses have found; that we make no claims but only get results ….Guaranteed.”
How to handle price resistance
One of the basic objections
It is an automatic reaction in many cases – “How much is it?” does not mean anything. We all judge items by their cost as this is the easiest way in which we can assign value to anything.
There is a difference between ability to pay and willingness to pay
We all feel good/bad by the control we feel we have over our lives. Money gives us the feeling of control and freedom, so we automatically feel good if we have a lot of it, and like to keep it in our pockets. Most salespeople feel price is the stumbling block to a sale. Price is never the deciding factor in anything (except when 2 products are exactly the same).
You cannot argue with a “price” because it doesn’t mean anything. Always emphasise the value and benefits of what you are offering.
1. Use Feel…..Felt…..Found
“I know how you feel……..”
“Most of out customers felt the same way…….”
“However, this is what they have found……….”
2. Delay the price
“I know the price is important but let me deal with that in a minute.”
“I’ll come on to that, it’s the best part.”
3. Don’t avoid it but delay the answer
Sell the values
“For your £395 you get this and this and this.”
4. Give them “because”
People will be much more willing to do what you suggest if they understand the reasons why.
“It costs this much because …………………………..”
5. Isolate the price
“Mrs. Smith is the price your only concern?” Then let them answer.
6. The sandwich price
Proceed and follow the price with value statements.
ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS EXPECT PRICE RESISTANCE!!!
7. Compared to what
“It’s too expensive compared to what…………………………?”
8. Break down the price
- time- a day/week/hour
- to an inexpensive item-a packet of cigarettes a day etc.
9. Only compare the difference
I know it’s slightly more expensive but we are only looking at an extra 25p per day in a year.
10. Give proof of other’s success with your product
11. Focus on benefits to the customer
12. Talk about people who have bought your product
“Mr Jones, don’t just take my word for it……….”
You must overcome customer inertia. People will be unwilling to change to a new product or supplier because they become lazy in making decisions. You must be calm and give plenty of reassurance to show them that they are making the right decision.
Handling money and price objection
First ensure it is an objection and not a condition
- Can’t afford it
Not enough benefits have been given. Would they buy it if their lives depended on it?
- We are short of cash
Work out easy payment terms.
- Budget limitations
Move it into the next budget period.
- Price is higher than expected
This will always be the case. Show them reasons for the price. Use the “because” (rule no.4) statement.
- It’s too expensive
Find the competitor comparisons and ask “compared to what.”
- Justify with the ‘Ferrari’ price.
“Yes it does cost a lot more, but in the air conditioning industry this system is the equivalent of buying a Ferrari.”
- Competitor weaknesses
It’s vital to compete with the superior differences of your product to the competition.
- “You know it’s worth it because………”
You will always encounter price as an objection in 99% of sales .To be professional, expect the objection, welcome it, and then deal with it in a calm and structured manner.