So you’ve started a retail business. Your doors are open but how do you persuade customers to buy your products?
I have no clue where the idea originated, but somewhere along the way I picked up the notion that to effectively sell a product or service, you should gush about the features of that product or service. I’m not alone in my flawed thinking. Inc. points out that most marketing messages focus on features and leave customers to figure out the benefits for themselves.
But according to Inc., “Customers never buy because of product features. They buy because they perceive some “benefit” to those features.”
Follow Inc.’s six guidelines to create product benefits that get customers to buy:
1. Understand the difference between a benefit and a feature.
A feature is what the product or service “is” or “does.” A benefit is what the product or service “means” to the customer.
- Instead of “This car has a reinforced safety roof” you’d want to say this: “This car keeps your family safe.”
2. Use evocative language that’s easy to understand.
Customers will remember a product benefit longer, and with more ease if it’s expressed with simple, powerful words that evoke emotion. For example:
- You’d want to say “If this car rolls, there’s a good chance you’ll walk away unharmed”, instead of “This roof protects in the event of a rollover accident.”
3. Avoid jargon.
Business cliches and technical terminology will drain the emotion from your product benefit.
- Go with “You can connect virtually anywhere” instead of “Robust implementation of 80210 protocols!!!”
4. Keep the list of product benefits brief.
Long lists of benefits will confuse because most people only hold two or three thoughts at one time in their short-term memory.
- A better way to persuade customers is to try “The two most important things to remember are…” not “Here are the top 10 benefits of using our product:”
5. Make sure you emphasize what makes you or your business unique.
While generic product benefits can persuade customers to buy, they may not necessarily be from you! Differentiate you or your company from the competition by using unique benefits.
Instead of “Our software makes you more productive” try “Our customers report an average 30% decrease in costs, about twice the industry average.”
6. Make your benefits concrete.
Customers will ignore abstract or vague benefits, whereas definitive and specific benefits will persuade customers more and “stick in the mind.”
- Use “We decrease inventory costs by an average of 25%” not “We can radically reduce your inventory costs.”
Conclusion To Persuade Customers
“You’ll get more customers, more quickly,” says Inc. “if you communicate the benefits of using your product rather than the features it possesses.”
Learn how Rain Retail Software can help you increase sales and grow your business.