We are all wired a certain way, so are customers. Customers are wired to ask for a discount, or to contest/challenge your pricing in an effort to bring it down. We have all been there, and it’s no secret that when customers ask for discounts, the vibes in the air change, the tone of the discussion shifts, and it’s time now to put on our boxing gloves. We will see both how to handle this objection/statement when it shows up, and how we could prevent it from showing up.
One thing to remember is that good sales people know how to defend their pricing, but great sales people never get defensive! This means, that instinctively we want to defend, to justify our pricing to the prospect. Doing that puts us on the defensive, and when we are defending, we are not in control of the conversation. We need to stay on top of the conversation, in the driver’s position, unshaken and focused.
If a customer says “Your pricing is too high”, this creates more questions than answers for ourselves. To answer all of these questions, one of the best methods I have learned and using on a regular basis to keep control of the conversation, is one of the most fundamental sales tricks… and that is to keep asking questions! You don’t need to reply to a question with an answer, but you can reply with another question which will allow the customer to elaborate further, and give us some more answers!
In this instance, the question I would personally ask is “By how much?”. I need to know, “By how much” is my pricing too high? This question actually opens the door to more answers. For instance, it will create the context in which you can find out “the number” by which your price is too high, or “the number” that the customer has in mind. Knowing numbers makes a sales discussion much easier, as you cannot negotiate vague ideas, but you can certainly negotiate on definite numbers.
Also, another reason for asking “By how much?” is because this opens the door to the answer of “What other alternatives have you got in mind, and at what price?”. When you know what or who you are actually competing with, then you can proceed in focusing on creating on the strong points, value adders, over the alternatives. Here the “By how much?” question can also mean “Compared to what?“
Thirdly, which is the case more often, is you can call out customers’ bluffs! Most of the times, vague statements like this are used as bluffs, or as distractions to throw us off balance, and give control of the conversation to the customer. If the customer cannot provide exact numbers, alternatives, or more precise information, this signals that they are bluffing, and are just trying to push your pricing limits without any real alternatives.
We have seen above how to tackle the price objection when it comes in that format. Now there is also a way to tackle it, tie down, before it ever shows up! It all starts when you are qualifying the prospect. When you qualify the prospect, a key thing to consider and ask, is whether the customer has checked the pricing beforehand. Most customers have already done their homework and know pricing, that’s why the come to you in the first place. Another thing to ask, is what other alternatives have they seen so far in the market? This way, you know roughly what research they have done, and what you are competing against. If you qualify the prospects properly, then the pricing objections are less likely to appear.
I hope you have found this article helpful ! All comments and feedback are welcomed, so leave yours below.