19 May 2024, 14:59
By Gordon Hecht Oct 20, 2022

Sell the benefits, not the product

Why do people buy your products? Rather than rolling out the old sales spiel, perhaps it’s time to reconsider the qualities that actually push your sales over the line, suggests US bed industry consultant Gordon Hecht …

It’s a great time to be alive in this world of ours. Sure, things are not perfect. They never were and never will be. There’s lots to keep us awake at night, but we also live in a time with more options and solutions to make life just a little easier. 

My everlovin’ bride and I relocated our home to Florida a little more than a year ago. Moving meant getting rid of a lot of old stuff and replacing it with new stuff that helps us adapt to our new environment. Some of what we bought was a small investment, others required a larger spend. In the past year we bought … 

A $1.25 spoon rest. It’s that scoopy looking thing that sits on our range or counter and gives us a place to put kitchen implements that we use for stirring sauce or gravy. I know we packed one from our old house, but that one must be hanging out in the Bermuda Triangle with the missing socks from our dryer. 

You don’t miss something until you don’t have one. I picked up our new spoon rest at the Dollar Tree. We use it, pop it in the dishwasher and it comes out clean. It saves us time and effort from having to scrub the range top or wipe down the counter. 

A $12.00 Rada tomato knife. Spring and summer in Florida means lots of fresh veggies and fruit. We eat a lot of salads all year, but always make a mess when slicing tomatoes. Between the seeds, the stem, and getting thin slices, those red romas and beefsteaks can be quite troublesome. 

We heard about the Rada line of knives and checked out their version designed for tomatoes. It’s well engineered, easy to use, easy to clean, and I’m able to cut tomatoes a thin as a dime. There’s even a hook at the end to cut out the stem. Any time you can avoid a hassle and shell out less than a double sawbuck, it’s a good deal. 

A $29.00 NOAA weather radio. We live close to the coastline. That means being aware of minor disturbances like hurricanes, waterspouts and power outages. We spent just under $30 for a small radio with a built-in flashlight, cellphone charger and emergency signal. As far as juicing it up, it can be plugged in, has a rechargeable battery, and even a crank to charge it in case the electricity is out. 

There’s a NOAA (national weather service) station setting which reports accurate weather. Now I don’t have to watch the Ken and Barbie weather reporters on TV. Best of all, no commercials, no hype, and very local reporting. That radio is small, but delivers a powerful amount of information and personal security. 

A $40.00 Roku Streaming Stick. There was a time when you could sign up for cable and for under 30 bucks a month could get 300 crappy TV channels. Cable bills today run closer to $200 a month for 350 crappy TV channels. We switched to a Roku stick that connects to our smart TV. For a one-time cost of $40 we now have access to over 3000 crappy TV channels! Sure, we still have to pay for internet, but we get all the viewing we want and are saving an extra C-note a month. 

We purchased each product for a reason:  to save time; less hassle; security; to save money; and to feel better.

Whether you are selling cheap spoon rests or top-of-the-line sleep systems, every product is purchased for one of those same reasons. It’s not what the product is, it’s what it does – specifically for the shopper standing (or laying down) in front of you.

We try, so often, to sell by reciting a list of specifications, giving an indication of what those specs mean – but seldom do we talk about how the product will make life better for our shopper. Every product you sell will appeal to your shopper and make their life better based on one or more of those five reasons. That includes your accessory items, and services like home delivery, finance options, and product protection plans. 

This week, plan to create, rehearse, and deliver a sales presentation that includes saving time and money, gaining security and feeling better. Your shopper will appreciate having less hassle in her hectic schedule. You’ll make her life easier, and you’ll celebrate sales numbers that are getting better all the time.

Gordon Hecht is a business growth and development consultant to the retail home furnishings industry. He can be reached at [email protected].

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