If you have spent much time selling, you probably already know that a “No” from a buyer may or may not really mean no.
During a buyer’s busy work schedule, talking to many sales people, sometimes saying no really means something else much deep.
Sales Gravy is a newsletter I have subscribed to for years — mostly because it gives down to earth advice in dealing effectively and efficiently with the sales process. Since sales seems to be the hardest thing for new crafters looking to wholesale, I would like to share some tips from the article by Tom Hopkins:
1. “No, not yet.” If this is the case, you’ve created interest, but not enough urgency for the buyer to make a decision. This buyer likely has lingering questions that need to be addressed. … this “no” just means, “let’s talk some more.”
2. It could mean that you haven’t fully discovered all of the buyer’s needs or qualifications. Few buyers are 100% forthcoming with sales people….Keep asking questions until your buyer feels that you truly understand what they want, need and will own. People buy from you, not because you understand, but because they feel understood.
3. The buyer might be saying this just “isn’t the right time” for a decision. Timing is everything. Be very clear in asking timing questions. If not today, when? … Questions truly are the answer!
4. “Not that model/color/size/quantity.” If you offer variations of product (models, sizes, color and so on), just because a buyer says “no” to Plan A, be prepared to work your way through to Plan Z.
5. “No, not you.” It’s sad, but true. Some people just won’t “click” with you. They won’t feel comfortable with you. And perhaps you won’t feel comfortable with them…
Sales is really a relationship building game. Good sales people learn to find out why their product doesn’t work or what they can do to help the store buyer make a decision.
Some of the techniques I used in connection with Tom’s suggestions
- “No, not yet” can also mean that they have no open-to-buy. A good question to ask can be: “When can I get back to you when it is a better time to buy?“
- It could mean that you haven’t fully discovered all of the buyer’s needs or qualifications. Ask questions, and then listen, listen, listen!
- The buyer might be saying this just “isn’t the right time” for a decision.— which is closely related to point #1. There is no harm in asking when a better time would be to check back with them.
- “Not that model/color/size/quantity.” For first time buyers, I found it very effective to offer them a ‘introductory package’ that includes your best sellers. Sometimes, they need a reason to try your products and a mixed package can solve this issue.
- “No, not you.” Of course, a buyer will probably never tell you that they don’t like you and won’t buy anything you try to sell them. But that is the exception not the rule! If you get the impression that a buyer doesn’t like you, there is not much you can do. Just go on to the next prospect and sell them instead!!
More information on this topic in the following article: