Christmas madness continued.
I intend writing a post for real estate agents soon about “how to sell a house”. However it is prudent to continue the story about trying to purchase a Nespresso coffee machine in a retail store.
I mentioned about my experience at Farmers Trading Company in Nelson New Zealand where locally the company was advertising the product on television, however the retail sales person on the floor told me they did not carry stock in Nelson, nor did they offer to get one in. Who runs this outfit?
Anyway I left the store and drove to Noel Leeming appliances in Trafalgar Street, low and behold they had a full range of Nespresso machines and also a demo unit.
Was I in luck? I don’t think so.
Can you believe it? There was no-one in the store who knew anything about the units. They had no idea about how to operate the demo unit and a salesman told me “we will match any price”.
My reaction was “I want the right machine, and I would like to speak with someone who understands and can demonstrate the sample unit”. “Price is NOT the consideration here”.
Next they got someone to get some milk and attempt to make me a coffee. The person admitted they had no experience in using this demo machine.
Needless to say the coffee was undrinkable and naturally no sale.
All this took at least thirty minutes of my time and I was no further advanced in securing a coffee machine.
After all I had seen George Clooney on TV waxing miracle about this product.
Next trip was along to Harvey Norman in Nelson, I was getting used to slack service and people with no training now.
Harvey Norman surprised me, they had a full range of Nespresso machines on display and the advertised prices were much lower than in Noel Leeming.
However there was no demo unit. A young lady by the name of Brooke could sense that I was interested in a Nespresso machine and asked if she could explain about them.
First and foremost she asked why I was looking at Nespresso machine ? A great start as retail people normally never ask these kind of questions.
As the interview unfolded it was obvious to me this young lady had been well trained, she not only asked questions but convinced me that she truly understood these machines and despite the fact i could not see one in action and sample the goods I was sold on the type of machine I needed for the specific purpose I wanted it for. If you missed the earlier post is is here: Christmas madness
No guesses who got the sale here!
Making Major sales at Christmas
Madness in retail goes on all year however it seems to get much worse the closer to the end of December.
I visited Farmers Trading Company a major department store in Nelson New Zealand a few days ago. My intention was the purchase of a small Nespresso machine I had seen advertised on Television the night before. This product looked as though it was great for travel as well as ideal for a small flat.
At this point I was not a 2012 type customer who normally does their research with the help of Google, I had been convinced by the high cost of the television advertisement it could be worth checking out.
Once I found the area where the coffee machines were displayed I could find no sign of Nespresso. When I eventually found a staff member for that area she had no idea whether they were stocked or not. She went off to check with a supervisor and duly arrived back with some bad and astounding news. The Farmers Trading Company had spent thousands advertising on peak time television but the only Farmers Store in this town of 70,000 people did not carry the Nespresso coffee machines.
On my way out I observed more madness, a couple were very interested in purchasing a set of garden furniture, yes a major sale in my book. The sales person showed them the product but displayed no sign of asking for an order. The couple were hot to trot, they asked to buy it.
“Oh but we do not have any”, was the answer the couple received from the sales person. The couple asked if the could buy the floor stock. “But we do not like to sell or floor stock” was the answer from the sales person. After hearing this I called out in a loud voice “A sales is a sale”.
The couple in unison said “we agree” and I then received the dirtiest look from the sales agent. At last the sales agent went off to see what she could do and as far as I could ascertain reluctantly agreed to sell the floor stock.
Why is it so hard to buy? Why is it a company would spend good money on nationwide television and not carry the advertised product in the store?
Well in my opinion it all comes down to training, staff must be properly trained, sales people must be aware of how to treat customers, what motivates them to make a purchase and above all, understand the difference between making a simple sale and making a major sale.
Things get worse in Nelson, wait until you read the next post. Coming soon.
In fact it is right here: More Christmas Madness
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Here is a video about sales in American car dealerships. We all know how bad some car dealerships are, and how bad car sales people can be.
What is it about vehicle salesmen? The world is full of them but how many have ever read a book on Selling? How many understand the difference in what their selling as opposed to selling a floor mat for the car?Continue reading
Car sales people, Car yards, vehicle sales. Are they all the same? It sure seems like it. My recent experience was when I had a whim and thought I would check out the famous British car Jaguar. (Now owned by a company in India I believe).
I walked onto the yard when there was very few people around and has plenty of time to look. It was not long, (shorter than usual) before I was approached by a smart looking car sales person. The first words were the dreaded “Can I help you?” I pointed out that I was taking a look at Jaguar as I had not taken any interest since the days of high maintenance with leaky oil seals and faulty transmission units.
Well I was in for an education, the salesman really got into high gear and started pointing out endless features covering a number of different models. I cannot remember ever having such a complete list of features from anyone for so long. He took me through each model in detail, raving with wild enthusiasm about how great these cars were. Including pointing out the manufacture was still conducted in the UK regardless of the fact it was now owned by an Indian organization.
I was told about the leather seats, GPS system, Ipod accessory sockets, phone prep etc. Overall the lecture went on for close to forty five minutes. During this time the salesman also pointed out that he was once a mechanic so he knew all about the Jaguar and how it has now overcome the service issues it was renowned for in the old days.
Quite frankly I had been bombarded with information, not one single question was asked of me, nothing about who I was, where had I come from, what was I driving, why I had visited there yard today.
When I was about to leave I was aked if I would like to take a drive in one of the new cars, my reaction at that time was “Maybe later”.
At that point I was asked if I would be happy to leave my mobile number and he would call in the weekend to see if I would come in and take a test drive at that time. Naturally I gave him the number and went on my merry way. All in all quite a daunting experience and I left totally confused on which models I had actually seen. In fairness to the salesman I did get a call and he left a message inviting me in to take a test drive.
At this point I have not been back. My thoughts about all this brings me to the point in asking why these sales people are not trained. Why don’t they understand how to ask questions? The business people miss when making major sales must be astounding and even learning a few fundamentals would help.Continue reading
Everyone involved in selling loves talking about features.
Features are the integral part of products or services and what many people involved when making major sales.
Many sales people are not aware that just talking about features can destroy their sale.
In a very simple low cost sale features are usually important however the opposite is true when making big sales.
Most sales managers tell their sales people to get out there and talk about all the great features of their product or service.
In most cases these sales managers have no idea what they are talking about.
Research by the Huthwaite group in the early 1970’s found in the bigger sale talking of features had little or no effect on the outcome.
The art of asking questions is by far the most important factor and understanding these questions and being able to analyse the answers correctly is far more important.
Being able to uncover explicit needs and requirements of your customer and help find a solution is far more important.
If you think you have what it takes go and register on our home page in the appropriate category you are currently involved in. We hope you are really doing well making major sales.Continue reading
I have spoken many times about objection handling and closing when it comes to selling. The message however does not always get through. Did you know that traditional closing techniques just do not work when making major sales? Trying to overcome objections during a larger sale can also cause you problems as well and contribute to lost sales.
The skills required for making big sales can be demonstrated quite clearly with the research Neil Rackham carried out in his Newcastle study way back in the early 1970’s.
Rackham found that successful sellers focus on objection prevention, NOT on objection handling. The research analysed how they did it and described it in his books. The sales courses aimed at specific industries also explain these skills in detail and if you are able to practice and obtain these important skills you will find a major improvement in your sales ability.
The same thing applies to closing the sale, Racham found the closing techniques used in smaller sales can lose you business when making major sales. Most commonly taught closing techniques do not work, the skill is to find better ways of obtaining customer commitment in the major sale and once again in our dedicated sales course we place a huge emphasis on this skill.
For some strange reason the average sales course goes into great detail and training about handling objections and closing techniques. In virtually every case these relate to making simple sales. In my experience I have collected and read numerous books on sales training, and most sales managers teach this method to their sales teams. However if you are involved in making major sales and you adopt these training techniques it is very clear you be heading in the wrong direction.
In our courses we teach the techniques that have been proven to work through dedicated and tireless research by Neil Rackham of Huthwaite Research.
There are very few sales people in the world who have these skills, few organizations teach it and the reason is simply because they do not know about it.
My passion is being able to show a potential sales person how to advance to super sales person in a few short steps in record time. If you sell big ticket items and you are involved in making major sales we can help you providing you can read, listen and ask questions.Continue reading
Thailand is one of my favourite places and here is a photo of me surrounded by a great group of sales people involved in making major sales.
These people sell high end electronics and smart home for my really great friends RSGB in the new Paragon shopping center in Bangkok. Krisda and chalailak started the business years ago and they are the leading experts in smart home technology for that country.
I have spent many happy hours with these wonderful people and they love what they do. They all have the passion for the consumer electronics industry.
Rich Devos is one of the original founders of Amway. Here is a rather candid interview with Rich about the Amway sales process and as you are probably well aware Amway is seriously successful. As far as I am aware the sales are handled by multi level sales people. The company seems to be rather big on Sales Training and customer service training.Continue reading