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A Thing

Selling the How, Not the What

When you meet with a prospect, don't talk about your product. Yes, you read that correctly, do not make your product the focal point of your presentation. Instead, bring the attention to how your product or service benefits the merchant, rather than what it is.

Chances are, you have competitors that sell very similar products. Prospects don't need to know what you're selling as much as they need to know how it will help them run the business more profitably. You should be armed with information and be able to explain specifically how these benefits are different and better than those offered by your competitors.

For example, if one of the services you're selling is a Web storefront, a few informative sentences about what an Internet storefront is should suffice. Then move on to what your product does for other business owners you've worked with, and what it can do for this one.

Does it increase sales? Make sure you can give specific examples of how it has increased sales, including dollar figures, whenever possible. Does it reduce paperwork? Again, cite concrete examples of types of paperwork eliminated and what the saved time can mean (reduced payroll costs, more time to spend with the family). Does it simplify inventory? Have specific, relevant examples ready for this prospect to easily relate to his or her business.

Many times, the decision to buy has already been made even before you begin to speak, but the decision regarding from whom to buy has yet to be determined. Focus on the benefits to the merchant's business, and your prospect will have no choice but to partner with you.

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