Whether you need to learn how to sell a car, how to sell on eBay, or how to sell books on Amazon, this article can help you learn how to sell to even the most knowledgeable of customers online or off. Keep reading to learn more.
In this article:
- Tip #1: Know the Products or Services Well
- Tip #2: Stop Selling
- Tip #3: Challenge the Customers’ Status Quos
- Tip #4: Leverage on the Unique Selling Proposition
- Tip #5: Anticipate Objections
How to Sell to Very Knowledgeable Customers
For many salespeople, selling to ordinary prospects can be very challenging. What more if their prospects know a lot about the products and services they’re selling?
Salespeople often get intimidated by well-informed customers because they feel that the customers know more than them. They’re concerned that chances are high that they won’t be able to answer their questions and as a result, fail to close sales.
The following are very helpful tips for any salesperson to sell to highly-informed customers with greater ease.
Tip #1: Know the Products or Services Well
Customers, highly-informed or not, only buy from salespeople they trust. Much of that trust comes from knowing that the salesperson knows the product or service more than them.
When salespeople deal with less-informed prospects, they’re likely to get away with just winging it during sales presentations or calls. However, a shallow understanding of products and services and a “winging it” strategy won’t cut it with highly-informed customers.
Want to learn how to sell anything to highly-informed customers? Learn everything you can about the product or service you’re selling.
Highly-informed customers are a very knowledgeable bunch of people, and part of the reason why they’re well-informed is they ask a lot of questions — many of which are detailed and intricate.
Salespeople who lack a deep knowledge and understanding of their products and services won’t stand a chance against them. Highly-informed customers will eat them alive and they’re likely to leave sales calls with their tails between their legs.
Before doing anything else to sell, salespeople need to study their products and services extensively. By doing so, they have much higher chances of earning their highly-informed prospects’ trust and closing sales much easier.
Tip #2: Stop Selling
It may sound illogical but stay with us as this will make sense in a while. Stop “selling” to highly-informed customers. Here are some reasons for this.
First, highly-informed customers are exactly that — highly-informed! They’ve done their homework by identifying what they want and need and have probably scouted several alternatives.
Second, selling tends to focus on the products or services being sold instead of addressing the needs and wants of prospects. The opposite of “selling,” in this case “serving,” is all about understanding what the prospects truly need or want and focusing on addressing those.
Remember, highly-informed customers are very logical and want to get straight to the point. Thus, salespeople can benefit most by understanding them and focusing on their needs or wants instead of product pushing.
Tip #3: Challenge the Customers’ Status Quos
In his book The Entitlement Cure, John Townsend wrote that the most important changes in life only happen when people find the costs of not-changing to be greater than the costs of changing.
People who survive heart attacks often find the ability to change their diets because they realized that the costs of suffering a heart attack are greater than the costs of giving up many of their favorite foods. People who used to be very lazy in exercising find the discipline to do it regularly after their doctor diagnosis them with a serious obesity-related medical condition.
Events like these challenged people’s status quos. And when they saw that not changing can be very costly in terms of what’s dearest to them, they acted.
Challenging well-informed customers’ status quos can help make them want to act. In particular, it can help them want to buy a salesperson’s products or services.
The best way to challenge their status quos is by asking leading questions. The answers to these questions need to show them the cost of not buying, such as:
- Fear of missing out
- Getting poor quality
- Losing money
By asking such questions, salespeople can make their highly-informed prospects realize the need to buy the products. When the suggestions or answers come from the customers themselves, they’re more likely to want to close the sale.
Tip #4: Leverage on the Unique Selling Proposition
Most, if not all, salespeople face significant competition in the market place for customers.
Many times, their products or services are very similar to what their competitors are selling. However, that doesn’t mean their products and services are exactly the same as their competitors’.
The difference between what salespeople sell and the similar products or services their competitors sell is the unique selling proposition or USP. This refers to the feature, benefit, or characteristic that’s unique to a particular product or service.
A USP can be many different things, which may include price, efficiency, and technology, among others. Examples of USPs include:
- A 10% lower selling price for the same, exact product
- The ability to accomplish something at only half the time it takes for competitors
- A five-year warranty compared to competitors’ two-year warranty
- The ability to work on all computer operating systems compared to competing products that only work on either a Mac or Windows operating system
Highly-informed customers probably already aware of common features, benefits, or characteristics between competitors. A salesperson’s ability to highlight a product or service’s USP can help separate their products from those of their competitors.
Products and services that clearly stand out from the minds of customers, including highly-informed ones, are most likely to close sales. That’s why focusing on the USP is key.
Tip #5: Anticipate Objections
Many salespeople shudder at the thought of customers or prospects raising serious concerns or objections to their products or services. And it’s such fear that often makes them buckle under pressure and bungle their pitches or selling efforts.
However, it’s not something salespeople should brush aside. Those are legitimate concerns that have very high chances of happening, especially when dealing with highly-informed customers.
Because they are highly likely to happen, the best way to address objections or concerns is to anticipate them. By doing so, salespeople have the opportunity to think of the best way to address them should they arise.
A person can dodge a sucker punch that he or she knows is coming. That person can’t do the same to sucker punches that come from out of the blue.
Salespeople should expect objections, especially from highly-informed customers. Therefore, salespeople have no choice but to determine the most likely objections and concerns about their products and services so they can optimize their chances of successfully addressing them and closing deals.
Selling can be a very challenging job, but selling to highly-informed customers can make it even harder. Applying tips like these on how to sell anything to knowledgeable customers can help any salesperson prepare better, be more confident, and sell with greater ease.
Have you tried selling to highly-informed customers before? If so, how would you describe the experience? Which of these tips do you think can make a difference in your career? Let us know in the comments section below!