Our industry runs on sales. Without them, well, we wouldn’t have the jobs we all do now. But it’s how sales are done, the environment they’re done in, the attention to details, that makes a sale much more than a sale. It becomes an investment, turns necessity into aspiration. These are nine of my tips to help boost sales, and add some extra polish to the pitch.

1. Drop the hard sell, up your aspiration

I’m not a believer in the hard sell. Forcing people to sign on the night in uncomfortable circumstances. It is what has helped contribute to the negative stigma our industry has generated with homeowners. Instead, work to the homeowners time scales. It might be quick, it might take a little longer, but in the end you sign up a customer that is much more relaxed and much happier. And, if you’re good enough at selling, you can still sign on the night if you feel you have to, if you do a good enough job in building up the desirability enough right there and then. Although in my experience I find working to the customer’s needs and NOT yours works better for everyone.

2. If you have a showroom, use it!

If you’re an installer and you’re lucky enough to have a showroom, make sure you squeeze every little bit out of it! That is your domain to demonstrate to your potential client you can do the best work, have the best products and work to the best standard. If that isn’t the best way to sign up a happy customer then I don’t know what is!

Keep it clean, keep it modern, keep updating the products in it. There’s nothing worse than a dusty old showroom full of outdated products that look like they’ve been thrown in.

3. Make the extra effort to be welcoming

If the customer is making the effort to come and see you in the office or showroom, then make them feel as welcome as possible. They’re coming into your environment, so it’s important they feel relaxed and at ease. Offer drinks and nibbles, ask them their names, ask them questions. Try and get to know them a little bit if you can. It helps them and it will help you.

4. Get all your quotes in writing

Believe it or not, I still come up against companies who scribble down their prices on a scrap of random paper. How on earth do we expect a customer to go with a company on that basis? They don’t know what they’re getting, when they’re getting it, or anything at all for that matter.

Present your quotes with style, clarity and detail. There are plenty that won’t, so when you do, that little bit of extra effort will pay for itself.

5. Turn up on time

Whether you’ve got a B2B lead or a B2C lead, turn up on time! That company or customer is expecting you, and it’s likely the rest of their day is planned around that meeting. So many sales reps are late for one reason or another, so by turning up on time, this little act can create a bigger and impression than you’d think.

6. Focus on your USPs

If you’re an installer, it’s likely that you and your local competition sell a roughly similar range of products. So rather than try and compete with your competition on the basics, really focus on your company’s USPs. The things you do better than your rivals. You need to be giving your potential customer as many positive reasons to choose you.

7. Don’t slag off the competition

If you go into a client’s home and start talking about all the bad things about your competition, that will not work. It’s not professional. It’s weak. It’s grubby. It makes it look like you have nothing good to say about your own company and your own products.

8. Use technology to your advantage

There is a huge amount of technology you can use to aid your sales demo. For example, use a door builder to help guide a customer down the road of choosing their perfect new front door. Give them a tablet to easily browse through a portfolio of some of your best work.

9. Know your stuff

It pays to know your product inside and out. When customer have questions, it’s always impressive when you can respond quickly with sound knowledge of what you sell, the industry you work in and the rules that apply to your industry. It’s also a bit awkward when a sales person is quizzed in a person’s home and they get all flustered because they never bothered to research and learn about the very things they’re supposed to sell!

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