Do you know who are some of the most effective sellers in the business world? Car mechanics. On a recent visit to my local mechanic, I noticed that they are very persuasive and effective at what they do. I’m going to depart from my usual discussion of inventory management, and talk about effective sales strategies this time around. It’s still related to business.
Everyone who owns a car is encouraged to get an oil change at least four times a year. Each of these visits is a golden opportunity for mechanics to sell customers not only on what they came in for but a whole lot more.
No matter what type of business you have, you can learn a lot from how mechanics interact with customers. I’ll share five things the mechanic told me at my most recent visit and show how you can use similar tactics in your own business. So let’s get cranking.
1. Share Secrets
“Between you and me, you don’t really need to get new brake pads yet. I’d wait another 5,000 miles, at least.”
Build trust by letting your customers know that you’re not trying to take advantage of their lack of information. You’re giving free tips because informed customers are the best to work with. They will be more likely to listen when you make a suggestion if you start by showing that you’re not going to make unnecessary ones.
“While you’re here, maybe you should also get this done.”
Don’t just give your customers what they come asking for. Offer them more. You shouldn’t pressure them to get something they don’t need, but you should definitely make them aware of other possibilities.
3. Show, Don’t Tell
“This is what your air filter looks like right now. Would you like me to install a new one today?”
Don’t simply tell your customers that they need a particular product or service; show them! Ask probing questions or offer to do an in-depth analysis to discover what their needs truly are, and then show them that you understand them and have the right solutions.
4. Give Options
“Here are the three oil types you can use in your vehicle. I recommend the premium oil because it prevents wear better than the standard one, but it’s your choice.”
Customers want to feel like they’re in control, so you should explain their options and then let them decide which one they want. You can make a recommendation based on the customer’s specific needs so they have even more information to guide their decision.
5. Explain Consequences
“You could put off cleaning out your fuel-injection system, but the longer you wait, the more your fuel economy will suffer.”
Lay out the benefits and/or harms of taking specific actions. Don’t assume that customers know the long-term consequences of their immediate choices. You can also use this tactic in an attempt to change their mind when they are confident about a decision that may not be optimal.
By following these five tips in the sales process, you can help your customers get exactly what they need and drive your closing rate through the roof.