28 May 2024, 11:43
By Furniture News Oct 14, 2022

The Big Question: What's your biggest sales turn-off?

What do you think? From emerging trends to the latest business principles, Furniture News is setting out to gauge the trade’s feelings on a variety of industry-specific topics. Today, we’re asking our panel: What’s your biggest sales turn-off?

Deirdre Mc Gettrick, ufurnish.com: When there’s no research into what my business actually does, meaning the product wouldn’t suit our business. I do not sell furniture, there is no cart on our platform, so don’t try to sell me checkout technology. Trying to be funny on cold-calling LinkedIn messages also really annoys me

George Sinclair, Nimbus Beds: I hate hard, pushy sales. Although it is needed in some places, I prefer a relaxed sales environment

Huw Williams, Toons Furnishers: The hard approach and pushy selling really switch me off. I hate it, and I believe most customers do too

Jade Farthing, Haskins Furniture: Pushy salespeople that haven’t understood the customer’s needs 

Keiran Hewkin, Swyft: One that ask questions like, “I guess you’re too busy to acquire new customers for free, so I’ll leave you alone”

Mark Gannon, Sofa Source: Forceful and know-it-all

Neil Barker, Barkers Furniture: Bombardment

Rob King, Julian Bowen: Our industry’s desire for feature-led selling. Bigger is not always better

Shaun Peel, MattressTek: Pushy, ill-informed

Steve Reid, Simba Sleep: Cold calls. The volume of cold email approaches is vast nowadays, but at least they’re easy to screen and block 

Tom Bayliss, Kettle Interiors: The type of approach I dislike the most is the one that feels ‘script read’ – not personally tailored or adapted to the moment or customer in question

Shane Harding, Highgrove Beds: People tend to buy from people they like – I’ve never been a fan of personality-free salespeople that have a textbook approach to life. Thankfully, we still have a few characters left in the bed trade!

David Kohn, The Multichannel Expert: The best sales associate will ask a lot of questions to really understand the customer’s needs and preferences. They will be knowledgeable, interested in the product and above all honest. The worst will simply tell without listening

John Northwood, sales agent: “Can I help you?” The first thing you are taught in sales is not to say a negative as an opener

Wendy Martin Green, Peter Green Furnishers: We believe it’s a bad idea to push a customer into a sale. If they are undecided, we are quite happy to let them go home and think on it, and in almost every instance we are rewarded because they come back and make a purchase that they are really happy with

Martin Seeley, MattressNextDay: The discounters that just sell on price and think they are clever (they know who they are) – they just ruin relationships within the industry 

This article featured in the September 2022 edition of Furniture News magazine.

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