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Do Your Customers Buy On Price Alone?

Here are four simple things you can do to take price out of the equation!

It's frustrating when people appear to be focused on price alone. All they talk about is the price. "Your price is too high" or "I can buy cheaper elsewhere" are heard all too often. It's annoying when they ring or walk in and all they ask is "How much is it?"

There is a better way, and it's easy, too.

You see; the key ingredient is that price is only important when there's nothing else to talk about.

Typically, your advert or display will promote your service or features of your product. Your customer then sees your competitors offering what appears to be the same product or service. Because there's no differential, they can only shop on price.

So the fundamental key here is to promote your differences. Provide more information in terms of the reasons why what you offer is different or unique.

Tell them what to ask you about when they call so that their first questions relate to something other than price.

Here are four easy ways to promote your uniqueness:

1. Use testimonials. People are basically untrusting and sceptical. By showing them pictures and / or stories from satisfied clients, you gain trust. Make sure you use real names and people. Say Fiona Davis of Algester, Queensland - not just Mrs FD.

2. Have a performance guarantee. A wedding photographer charges many times the average for taking photos at weddings. Yet he's booked well in advance.

Why? Well, it boils down to his service guarantee. Expressed simply, he tells his customers that if their wedding photos don't come out perfectly, he will personally pay for them to have an identical wedding again. Yes, he will hire the suits, stage the reception, pay for the flowers, the cars, the accommodation for guests ? everything. Outrageous, yes, but that's why he's successful. People trust him (more on trust later) and feel confident that he can and will do the job. (Wouldn't you?) He doesn't compete in the price market. He has his own niche with people who can afford him and he does very nicely, too! (And by the way, he carries Insurance in case he has to deliver ? which I'm told he never has had to)

3. Give a Free Report to your buyer to help them gain more knowledge about your product or service. A Capalaba plumber provides a document called "Seven Essential Things You Must Know Before Replacing Your Hot water Heater" Does it get him business? You bet.

4. Make them a unique offer. Make it attractive. Add a bonus or a freebie. Yes, do it. It's a part of your cost of client acquisition. Consider the lifetime value of the customer. Your goal is to get them back again. Sacrifice a little up-front profit for long-term gain.

When you meet with your potential new client, ask them questions to identify their wants, cares and concerns and them match the benefits of your product / service to those needs.

Take a tip here: focus on the relevant benefits, not all the benefits. Sometimes it's just one thing about you, your product or service that makes the difference. Don't be guilty of overselling. Once they've said "Yes" the process moves into fulfilment.

Are you competing on price alone? And if so, why? It is an interesting fact that if you increase your price by just 10%, you can afford to drop 30% of your customers and still make the same GP. Don't believe me? Crunch the numbers; I guarantee you'll be surprised.

© James Yuille, Brisbane, Australia, 2004.

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