Sales is an art that everyone possesses but many never get a chance to tap into it. It’s the ability to understand a person’s needs by understanding their goals and challenges at a deep level, and pivoting your solution or multiple solutions to see what would be the best fit.
The buyer must always feel that the value he is gaining is always greater than the monetary value he is paying for a product, and in this situation an appliance.
The retail industry is competitive and fierce. With appliances, customers know that they are not cheap and so understanding the customers’ deepest needs are crucial just like selling a used car or a home.
You can’t sell a home with price alone, you have to understand what the buyer is looking for. The same concept applies to appliances in a retail setting.
Becoming a great Retail Appliance Salesperson is a skillset which will take time to develop, and requires learning from appliance pros like Bluemonte Appliance, and staying on top of innovative appliances.
So what’s the first step that you need to take in order to become successful in appliance retail sales?
1. Product Knowledge
When the technical questions come up you can’t be the person who just asks questions, eventually, you will need to handle client objections and questions with technical answers. This is your opportunity to showcase your credibility as an appliance consultant and give the customer the confidence that you would be the right fit to help him or her decide between various options.
There are so many appliances, and it can become confusing and overwhelming for many customers. They are seeking experts who can narrow down their options to specify what they need.
We need to educate the client enough where it’s not confusing. This in itself takes skill as you will need to break down complex ideas into simple thoughts for anyone to understand.
The second step you need to take is being able to master communication.
2. Using Open-Ended Questions
When we ask a customer a question we don’t want them to simply answer “Yes” or “No”, but we want them to elaborate on what they are looking for. Anytime a customer walks into a retail appliance store, their defense mechanism is up because they know that they will be surrounded by sales sharks who are trying to pitch them something.
Giving a customer their space is crucial, and following up your approach with an open-ended question to start a dialogue can get the ball rolling.
If you ask the right question the customer will realize that you understand them, and might be willing to talk. Of course, this depends on the customer as well.
When you ask open-ended questions you can start to steer the conversation to get the customer to elaborate on statements they may make. For example, if a customer says “Well, I’m looking for an energy-efficient appliance” your follow-up question can be “May I ask why energy efficiency is important to you?”
This type of question can help you identify why it’s important for the customer to save on energy costs. It could be due to wanting to help the environment, save on his monthly bill, or even wanting to reduce toxins or radiation that may affect his lifestyle at home.
This brings us to another point, in being able to actively listen.
3. Active Listening
You can’t steer the conversation and guide the customer as their go-to advisor if you fail to actively listen.
If you can leave the conversation with a customer thinking “that guy really gets me” you’ve just won yourself a relationship. Maybe not a sale, but you’ve improved yourself and you’ve built a relationship that could lead to another sale.
4. Objective Handling
If you fail to listen, you fail to handle objections. Objections are looked at as a bad thing in sales, but what it really identifies is a level of interest from the customer.
If a customer asks a question about an energy-efficient appliance and says “Well aren’t energy-efficient appliances more expensive?” your immediate response should be to acknowledge that question as a great question, agree with them and handle that question by educating them.
At the most basic formula, the best way to handle an objective is by the following;
- Acknowledge the question
- Handle the objective intelligently
- Continue the original conversation
5. Leveraging Social Media
Everyone talks about “social media” as this holy grail which can help grow your business, but how can you specifically leverage social media as a salesperson?
Just like how a Real Estate Agent leverages social media to generate leads and create brand awareness, you can apply this to the retail appliance world as well.
After you’ve built a relationship with a customer, instead of asking for their number which might be a bit personal why not ask for their social media contact? Give them a reason why you would like to add them, such as “I will send you a few articles on this topic” or if you’ve built up enough of a relationship asking them to add you on facebook or Instagram won’t be as crazy as it sounds.
Creating this level of commitment is just like a business card, except now they will remember you if you post regularly on social media. This concept is called the “Mere Exposure Effect” which states the more often you see someone, the more trust you have with that person.
The last key to take away from this, and to be an Appliance Retail Expert is following up.
6. The Sales Is In The Follow-Up
There’s a saying in sales that “the sale is in the follow-up” and this holds true in retail sales. Let’s say you’ve leveraged the social media strategy mentioned above, or if you have the customer’s contact details, don’t want for them to walk in the door next, follow up with them with a piece of information or letting them know that you were interested in coming down again.
At this point, you should be bringing up points that you last discussed with the client, showing the client you genuinely care about them and you want to help.
7. The Reality
The bar in sales is very low, and just by following these simple tips can help you stand out from sleazy salespeople that only want the sale. Your goal is to help the client get to the end goal without showing signs of neediness and reactiveness.
Thanks and I hope this was helpful!