By Ryan Velez
If you’re an entrepreneur outside of some of the traditional roles, or perhaps just an introvert, the word sales may be a bit of a turnoff for you. Ultimately, you need to garner interest in your product or service no matter what it is, so in a way, every entrepreneur is in sales. With this in mind, Black Enterprise breaks down the three stages of a sale that every entrepreneur will need to know.
The first step of a sale is well ahead of actually buying anything. The first thing people do when getting ready to buy something is to identify their needs or problems. Sometimes it’s simple, like getting food or drinks because they are hungry or thirsty. However, it can easily get more complicated, like a new family wanting a home that provides them with living space for children as well as excellent schools, all while staying within their budget. Some customers will come to you with an explicit set of needs, while in other cases, you may need to read what they give you and act accordingly. Your job is understanding your prospects and adjusting accordingly.
Once your needs are identified, the customer then explores what options they have available. Going back to the food example, they will think about what meal they would like to have. This leads to researching their options. Finally, when the options are weighed, the customer reaches the execution stage, when the actual sale is made, but there is a lot of thought and sometimes work that goes into place before that happens.
What does this mean? Some people in sales only get caught up in execution, assuming that everyone that comes their way is ready to buy now. This works for some, but the issue is that people who are still identifying or exploring will be turned off by this type of attitude. What is the best thing you can do to make sure that this other 2/3 of your customer base doesn’t find you pushy? In addition to providing your service, serve as a resource.