Selling to the Generation That’s Done its Homework
When it comes to making purchases, millennials are eager to do their homework. The research prepares them for what they feel is the perfect purchase and leaves little room for a store associate to change their mind. And oftentimes, they’ll stay online and make the purchase, bypassing brick-and-mortar for click-to-order, providing another challenge for store associates.
However, when those customers are making the trip to a physical store, they’re coming armed with information. In fact, according to CMO.com, a huge segment of millennials — 72 percent — research their options online before making an in-store purchase.
So, how do you keep up? Here are a few tools you can use to sell even the most informed millennial customer.
Access Your Own Data
When customers "webroom" — research online and purchase in-store — retailers have to find new, more compelling ways to promote products. With thousands of real-life reviews just a click away, theoretical examples no longer cut it. More than anything, millennials want proof.
Instead of having to rely on some example you heard from another customer last week, be prepared to talk about the data surrounding your product. If you already have a few numbers and facts, consumers will recognize and appreciate that you know what you’re talking about.
Acknowledge Their Research
Believe it or not, having a customer who has done their homework isn’t really a bad thing. And listening to everything they’ve learned through their research process can even help you pinpoint the right way to make a sale. By being attentive to their knowledge, you can figure out what they really want and maybe suggest something new that better addresses their need.
Always Tell the Truth
We’ve all had moments when the sales pitch we’re used to isn’t working for a specific customer. It’s tempting to try to save yourself from blowing the sale by making something up. After all, the customer won’t know the difference, right? Wrong.
A customer with some prep under their belt can spot a lie a mile away. And when they do, it can completely shatter any trust they had in you and your brand. If you don’t have the information they’re looking for at the time, it’s better to admit your uncertainty and express your willingness to find the answer.
Knowing how to interact with each customer who comes through your door can make or break your sales success. Arm yourself with research to be prepared for the customers that have done theirs and show them what you’ve got!
Kevin Cundiff is vice president of retail for Fortegra Financial Corporation, a Tiptree Financial Inc. company.