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How to Successfully Practice Consultative Selling

Dec 9, 2007
You have a product or service to sell. Although he/she may not know it yet, your target customer has a need. Now, it is your job to connect with your prospective consumer. Learn the 5 steps on how to successfully practice consultative selling and your business will grow and prosper.

In order to practice consultative selling, the principle must first be defined. According to Wikipedia.org, "Consultative selling emphasizes customer needs and meeting those needs with solutions combining products and/or services. A consultative salesperson typically provides detailed instruction or advice on which solution best meets these needs". You customer has a need or a problem, and you have the solution. Implement the following guidelines and see your bottom line increase.

1. Become a Partner

In order to develop a long-term buyer-seller relationship, you need to convey a partnership with your customer. What he/she wants or needs is what you want to provide. Helping your consumer reach a level of success means you are successful.

To be successful, you need to one-up the competition. Go the extra mile for your customer, and he/she will reciprocate with loyal patronage. Even if you have to raise your prices or fees, your consumer has established a relationship of partnership. Thus, since you are concerned about the customer's well-being, he/she will faithfully be concerned with yours. Create a partnership.

2. Create Trust

Put yourself in the customer/clients shoes. Proactively discuss the needs and determine how you can give the best product or service to help the individual be happy, or a business realize greater success because you carefully considered the best solution for the situation. Treat your customers as if their business is yours, and you will create trust that will blow the competition away.

3. Sell Yourself not the Product or Service

Do not be so worried about selling the product or service and increasing your bottom line. Even when the customer is ready to buy, deny the sale if it is not in his/her best interests, and explain why. Let your customer or client know you have considered the circumstances carefully, and maybe another solution would be preferable.

Imagine the loyalty you will foster, if your customer or client feels that his/her needs come before your profit margin. As long as your doors are open to the public, and as long as you can be a partner and a problem solver, you will have a faithful customer base.

4. Recognize How Your Business Benefits

When you are successfully practicing consultative selling, recognize how it will ultimately benefit your business. You are not investing your time in that one sale; you are building a long-term relationship and the future of your business.

It is no secret that the majority of new businesses close within the first five years. Usually an entrepreneur is totally devastated because all of his/her time and money just went down the drain and there is nothing to show for it.

With consultative selling, you are looking far beyond the end of the month profits or losses; you are building a future for your company. You are building relationships with the very people that will be responsible for keeping your doors open and the business coming across the threshold.

5. Ask the Customer

Finally, value your faithful customers and get their input. Ask the "What if . . ." questions. For example, ask your customers if they would be interested in you expanding your product line or services. Would they buy, if you had it to sell? Not only will you foster that sense of partnership, you also have a free marketing tool. Without spending any money, you can determine whether your new ideas will be a bust, or another means of providing a need and increasing your bank account.

In summary, if you want to successfully practice consultative selling, consider the customer as a partner in your success, and theirs. Think in the long-term and the benefits of establishing consumer loyalty and trust. Sell yourself first and your product or service second. Keep your doors open for years to come. Invest in the customer and you have invested in yourself.
About the Author
Paul Sutherland is an Accelerated Business Growth Coach. His company - Daniel Thomas International - www.dti.eu.com helps corporate and SMEs to grow their businesses with tried tested and proven techniques and strategies, increasing their bottom line profits in 90 days or less?

Pick up a FREE copy of "The 7 Big Mistakes" report when you visit the site and request a FREE 45 minute consultation.
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