Welcome to Part II of my "How to Effectively Sell" series. A lot of people are clueless when it comes to selling. They've got the pictures down, they know what they want to *say*, but I'm going to teach you that, as always, it's not what you say, but *how* you say it.
Let's begin with the most persuasive words in the English language. From a marketing standpoint, just using these words alone can influence and turn a shopper into a buyer. I know this because as a former sales consultant - on commission - my livelihood largely depended on the price of items and the number of items that I sold. Working these words into your sales pitch, in-store or online, will help you to organize your thoughts and present them to your buyer, convey features and advantages about a piece, and essentially close a deal.
They are the following:
DISCOVER how SAFE and EASY it is to use these NEW, FREE and GUARANTEED words that are PROVEN to get YOU the positive RESULTS that YOU are going to LOVE.
You will also start noticing companies who use these words to market their products to the mass
public on commercials, in adds, on billboards and in magazines.
Expect a Sale/Attitude
Let me be frank: your personal preferences about a piece are irrelevant. The moment that you can sell a piece that you personally detest, you can call yourself a professional.
So, when people are out shopping, your goal is to form a relationship with the customer. Gain their trust! You do this by being open, honest, and informative - yet handling your client firmly. You know, after all, that they are going to buy. You must go into a presentation EXPECTING a sale and keeping the excitement high. Make them laugh! When a customer laughs, they are yours. The excitement is passed on to the customer, who will get excited about their new piece. The customer wants to buy; and you want to sell. It's up to you to persuade your client that the piece he or she is looking at can bring your client benefits that he or she cannot live without. Use ownership words. In the handmade world, using a term along the lines of "I made this..." can go a long way. People want to connect with the artist. They want a story behind their piece. Give them what they want.
Often times, during an in-person sale, the demonstration is the make or break point in a sales pitch. Unfortunately, this gets a little tricky for online sales. Stunning photos that draw the viewer in and create a sense of depth are absolutely necessary.
Paint a picture for your client with your words. Don't be overly detailed, but convey the feeling of the piece with the words that you choose. Get as much information into your sales pitch as possible. Your customer wants to know all about the piece, so tell them all the features that your piece has, and why those features are advantages to your client! Features never sell, ADVANTAGES do.
Cover all your bases-knowledge is power! Use a little industry jargon to establish trust and value. When value is established, people buy.
The right price speaks volumes to your buyers, particularly online, when one's senses are diminished and they cannot touch an item. Know your competition and know them well. Comparison shop online for your goods. What is the typical price? Keep your shipping charges relevant to your piece. Are your prices representative of the cost of making your piece? What about photographing, editing, listing and shipping? From a business perspective, you should be making at least 50% on the cost of a piece. If you don't feel that you can sell your item for that, what is the closets amount that you can make a sale at? For online jewelry, buyers are more inclined to purchase if the total value is somewhere around $20 give or take a few, including shipping.
Closing the Sale
You have stated all the advatages and benefits to your client, you have amazing photos, including packaging of the piece, your price is right, you have kept the energy and enthusiasm high throughout your listing and you are just about running out of things to say. In an in-person sale, you would just keep going, assume your client is going to purchase this item, put it at the register, and add an add-on to go with the piece, or a completely different piece to wear either WITH their new item or to wear as an alternate. In-person sales, you do not stop until the client says "no" three times. With online sales, it is important to link your piece to the other items in your shop. You may include a statement suggesting the piece match other items in your shop, or a phrase instructing the buyer to click to your shop for more incredible deals. If you have done your job, the client will add this to their basket and click to your shop to view your other items.
Following up with your Clients
In-person sales offer a one-on-one atmosphere. Right after your client leaves, write down EVERYTHING - and I mean EVERYTHING - that you can remember about the customer. Family, friends, sizing preferences, favorite colors, contact information,sense of humor, etc.
When you're selling online, it's a little more tricky. Often times you won't have that personal one-on-one connection with your buyer. If you have a conversation going with the client, print out the e-mails and file them in a binder with a copy of the receipt once they buy.
Even if you can't make a personal statement, you should offer your heartfelt thanks by sending a Thank You card with a business card - 3 reasons! 1. It's just common courtesy. 2. It makes a lasting impression. By including your business card (colorful logo, peoples!) you keep your business/shop at the forefront of your customer's brain. They will be more likely to return to your store because of...#3. It's good customer service AND business practice! Also, drop them a note a few weeks later to see how they are enjoying their piece.
Questions? Comments? Want me to elaborate more on a topic? Leave me a note!
Next up: How to Effectively Sell: Part III - FABG!