Selling "Commodity" Products in a Competitive Environment
Is there a lot of competition for what you sell?
Does it sometimes feel like you sell a commodity, that your prospect can get from anyone?
If so, then you gotta think differently to find a problem to sell to.
People won't change if they don't want to.
Yesterday I got a challenge what I had to say on Monday about price never being the main issue. Here's the email…
I would like to disagree with your statement. I believe it all has to do with the importance of the products. Take for instance sealants. Here, people are not concerned about anything else either than pricing. I mostly get the statement "beat the price and you in". The better the price, the more mark up they make irregardless of the quality, they want the cheapest they can get.
The only problem you can solve here is if the cheap sealant does not seal, which is unlikely for any sealant not to.
Even with commodity products, it's not all about the product. There is more to look than just does the sealant seal or not.
For example, what about how long does the sealant last?
Or how about delivery and inventorying conveniences? You know, things like can you give more frequent deliveries of smaller amounts to cut down on inventory warehouse space required?
And what about giving payment terms? Heck, that could be a real bonus these days with what's going on with banks and financing.
Also, here's another tip: you may have to call on someone else at the business to find the person who cares about such issues. The traditional "buyer" may care only about price. The CFO or controller could find real value in payment terms that you could give them today.
These are just a few thoughts off the top of my head about things to look for.
When selling any product, and particularly when selling a "commodity" product, you gotta probe any and all areas that could be affected by the decision to do business with you.
And you should be asking more than one person if you are selling to B2B.
Low price selling is not a sustainable advantage. Companies that try to sell only on price, eventually go out of business or get swallowed up by their larger competition.
Find some problems to get your sales hooks into. They're out there if you're willing to look for them.
Sell with Pride,
Shameless Shamus Brown
P.S. Discover how to rapidly get your prospect to the emotional "I want to buy from you" point in my Persuasive Questioning Techniques sales training course. Get it here now in the Persuasive Selling Skills Audio Program.