Let me preface this post by saying that the FABG selling technique is not my original idea. When I was in commission sales I read a selling book that saved my life (and my paycheck) by Harry J. Friedman called "No Thanks, I'm Just Looking". While not the most well written book, Friedman does a great job of explaining how his years in the industry have helped him to form his professional retail sales techniques and turn shoppers into buyers. I recommend you pick this book up! It has saved my bacon many many times!!
So, What *is* FABG?
FABG stands for Feature, Advantage, Benefit, Grabber.
Any item can be FABG'ed.
Features - features are parts of the piece. Either a part of the piece or a characteristic of the piece. Often times this is the size, color, texture, materials used, etc.
Advantages - this is tied directly to the features of the item. An advantage is what the customer will gain from the feature. Friedman uses the phrase "which means" between stating the feature and advantage so that you, as a sales person, can specifically draw out the advantages for your customer. Sort of a "see spot run" type set up. Often times there is more than one advantage to any one feature!
Benefit - The benefit is the benefit of the advantage to your customer.
Grabber - This rounds out the sales pitch. The grabber restates the benefits in question form to get a positive response from the customer. This works mostly for in-person sales since, as an online shop owner, you probably won't have the one-on-one contact with your customer unless they message you for something. THEN you can talk up your piece. :) The grabber is an attempt to gain agreement from your customer. This agreement re-affirms in the buyer's mind that they are making the right choice to purchase. A sense of safety and security and trust is essential. Be honest and open with your client...Also this can come in particularly handy to see or control confirmation and validation from the bossy or controlled "know it all" friend a shopper or buyer may bring with them.
So, the sales pitch often goes something like this:
This is __________. It has [feature] which means [advantage] which means [benefit]for you, and [grabber].
How Does it Work?
By using this style of salesmanship, you add value and trust to the transaction. BOTH value and trust must be present in a sale before a shopper will buy. You also get to organize your thoughts before presenting them to the customer, which makes for a smoother transaction, online or in person.
1. Approach with a unique or funny comment.
2. Ask questions to determine what your client is looking for. Size, color, etc. Remember to listen closely - often times people tell you what they THINK they're looking for when their needs or preferences may indicate something else. It is your job to determine the best items in your shop to fit your client's needs.
3. Introduce the produce. "This is _______. It has __________, which means ___________, which means that you get ___________. Having ___________, would make yourlife *SO* much easier, don't you agree?
4. Start another feature, advantage, benefit, grabber and just keep going! When you run out of features, jump to another item that matches or goes with the first. This is how you close a sale with an "add-on". You don't stop until the customer says "no" three times. You will be surprised, often times the high spenders won't say no!
KEEP ON GOING! :D
Signs Your Customer Has Committed to Buy
Body language, speech and touch.
Excitement about the product.
Holding the item. Men and women both do this, but specifically for men, if they are holding the item in the palm of their hand, they have already purchased this item in their mind. For women, often times they will hold it, try it on, feel the weight, touch it, or keep coming back to it. (It's your job to point out the features and benefits of the item!)
If they're talking, they're buying! In sales, one of the most important tools is open communication with your client. Get them involved!! Ask an unusual question or make an insightful comment about their attire, their child's attire, their handbag, shoes, accessories or a unique piece of jewelry they have. Crack the ice and catch them off-guard to open the flood gates of conversation. (People don't respond to - "Hi there! Can I help you find anything?" Because they hear it all the time-and it's easy to say "no" to and just get rid of the sales clerk. I know. I do it all the time! =)
Make 'em laugh and they're yours!
Particularly on handmade websites such as Etsy, buyers want to connect more with the handmade story and person behind the art piece. Give people what they want! Encourage inquiries and comments - again, if they're talking, they're buying.
Using Ownership Language When a customer begins to say things like my, mine, my new, etc etc they have bought. To help establish the idea of ownership, refer to the piece you're trying to sell as if it is already the customer's property. Also, if they start to match the item they're holding to the items they already own, they have already bought in their mind. "This will go great with my blouse" or "This will really set off my new skirt".
A great example of this concept is buying a new car or house. When you've been looking and looking and looking for what seems like AGES, you WANT to buy, it's just finding the right fit. And when you see and drive that new car, or see that beautiful house, you begin to picture your items in the glove compartment or the back seat, and which room of the house will suit what best, and where you're sofa would look best. It's the same for all items a person buys.
Closing a Sale A simple question of "Shall I wrap it up?" will get your clients talking. Also, take the items from your customer and set them at a register. Start a pile and keep bringing everything you can think of to your customer to try on (once you've got them in the dressing room.)
If you missed Part II, you can find it here: How to Effecitvely Sell - Part II: Creating Desire Through Descriptions
Hope this helped everyone. Let me know if you want to me review something. :)