Overcoming Price Objections

If you’re in sales, overcoming price objections is just something you have to take for granted. But, really, are your prospects really being that unreasonable. Think for a moment of your home and get a mental picture of your livingroom. What kind of furniture is in it? Do you and your family sit around on green milk crates stolen from the back of a convenience store? Did you buy the absolute cheapest furniture you could find? Probably not. You probably purchased something that you wanted, something that was comfortable and that you’d be proud to have visitors see.

Here’s another question. Have you ever deliberately paid too much for something? Not too likely is it? You may have paid too much for something, but you didn’t do it deliberately.

The reason for these two questions is to emphasize the point that your prospects are no different than you. They’re going to buy things that they want and they’re going to avoid overpaying for something. In other words, they’re looking for good value for their money. That’s the first key in overcoming price objections.

Price objections arise for one of three basic reasons (and that’s it):

1. Your product or service IS overpriced.
This means that the prospect can get exactly the same product and exactly the same service for less money somewhere down the road. Now, if your product or service is overpriced then you do have a major problem. Unfortunately, it’s usually the company’s problem and, as salespeople, we can often do nothing about it. Frankly, the fact that your product or service might be overpriced is a rarity in the marketplace. It’s just too competitive a world out there for that to happen very often.

2. The prospect CAN’T AFFORD your product or service.
Now we should have found this out back in the Probe or qualifying stage of the sales process by asking the prospect whether or not he or she can afford your solution. If the prospect truly can’t afford what it is you’re selling, you probably shouldn’t be this far along in the sales process. If this happens to you a lot, take a look at your qualifying or probing process to see if you’re asking the right questions. While the prospect may not know how much your product or service is, you should know how much he or she is prepared to pay for it. That’s the purpose of the Probe step — to qualify your customers.

3. The prospect doesn’t want to afford it.
This is by far the biggest reason why the price objection ever comes up. Of course it’s your job as a salesperson to make sure the prospect wants to afford what it is you’re selling. That’s where your selling skills come in. Sell value, not price.

Where Does Price Fit In?
When overcoming price objections, remember, in any sale, price will always be a factor but it is rarely the deciding factor. In fact, only 10 to 15 percent of prospects put price first. Other key factors that prospects take into consideration are:

  • Confidence. How confident am I in you, your company, and in what you’re offering?
  • Quality. Is what is being offered good quality for the price? Is the value there?
  • Selection. Is this a take-it-or-leave-it situation or do I have choices?
  • Service. Will the after-sales service be there when I need it?

Remember, it’s important to sell value. If the prospect doesn’t perceive you as being better or unique, then the only difference you have to work with is price.

Authored by Mark Christie, owner of SalesForce Training.

SalesForce Training & Consulting is a professional services firm and Salesforce.com training firm based in Toronto, with training centers in Boston and Chicago, helping sales teams improve their performance, in front of the computer…and in front of the customer.