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How to add value to your order – selling your charges

By andrew on May 28, 2012

How to add value to your order – selling your charges. Many organisations will want to ensure all or at least more orders are commercially viable. It is easy to get into a habit of always saying yes, and end up with a significant number of orders that don’t actually make any money. This is poor business and just turns you all into busy fools.

I was working with client a few months ago. The telephone based telesales team was encountering resistance  selling attendance at their events on the basis that there was a charge to it. They felt this put people off and was a reason why people didn’t want to attend. They convinced themselves that this was a pointless obstacle to the sale and effectively a price objection.

The charge was after all, only £8. I suggested that it probably wasn’t a sales objection at all. If someone was interested in attending the event and was being given coffee and biscuits (or whatever) they probably wouldn’t change their mind simply over a charge of £8.

What to do then?

One of the ways of dealing with this, is to lessen the significance of the cost, and ensure the selling has already been done. Slip it into the call late, as a throw away line, and offer an explanation of what the charge is for. No drama, no fuss, no “do you want to go for that?” or worse “do you want to think about it?” I also got them to focus on why a prospect would want to attend the event – focusing on the benefits for them of course. This is the bit the team had to sell, not the cost. The theory is of course that if you’ve done the selling job and effectively, they almost certainly won’t change their mind because of the nominal charge.

They agreed to try it out, and admitted that they were confident that positioning it this way would be better. This in itself (a more positive attitude to it) was likely to make it more effective.

Interestingly enough they started monitoring their conversion rates after that, and we were all delighted that everyone who signalled an interest over the phone to book stayed with it even when the fee was then mentioned. It proved that once they’d bought into how useful the day was going to be for them, a small charge of £8 wasn’t going to sway them. Particularly when they knew it was to go some way to meeting some costs being incurred on their behalf.

Be steely then. If you’ve got a minimum order value, or you have to add on carriage or you have to introduce some extra minimum charge, think about how best to position it. Sell the benefits first, then introduce the fee. I’d say if the charge puts them off, the selling hasn’t been effective in the first place. It’s on shaky foundations. Parables about pigs and houses made of straw spring to mind.

For this and a whole host of other cross-selling, upselling and switch selling ideas from To Market on our training courses held across the Midlands : Birmingham, Coventry, Rugby, Lichfield, Solihull, Derby, Nottingham, Leicester, St Ives, Cambridge, Newmarket, Bury St. Edmunds, Wellingborough, Corby, Northampton, Kettering, Bedford, Milton Keynes, Oakham, Melton Mowbray, Loughborough, Warwick, Leamington Spa and wider parts of Leicestershire, Northamptonshire, the East and West Midlands. 01858 461148 to find out how we can help you develop more business on the phone.


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