Switch selling is possibly the least likely opportunity you will have compared with upselling and cross-selling. Switch selling is where you sell an alternative to the product or service that they think they want. Maybe something that does the same sort of thing, but perhaps in a different way.

They come in for a candle and buy a torch. Or if it’s a set of scented candles and you sell them a recording of some relaxing music and some rose petals. They come in for fixings : nails, screws etc and you sell them an adhesive. I’m sure you get the picture.   

Switch selling

Because you won’t have so many opportunities to do this, you need to keep an open mind when doing this. Sometimes you’ll feel that you’re trying to sell square pegs to someone who has round holes. Therefore try the following;

  • Questioning is key to understanding their needs, their situation, their application
  • Listen and get to understand what is important and why
  • Respect their knowledge
  • Use phrases such as “What other customers find ……………” to reassure them

When training with clients, we often work by getting the group to come up with ideas on switch-sells that they can use. I could give some examples, but given that they will inevitably be industry specific, they’re of limited use to you.

To switch sell effectively, you have to really be engaged in what the other person is saying and how they’re saying it. By listening and then getting them to consider alternative angles is the best way of gently moving them on to other products or services. Reassure them as you go, to let them know that what they’re doing is a good choice and a safe choice, “well look don’t worry. Try it for a couple of days and let me know how you get on. If you decide it’s not for you, we can always ………”

Being proactive in this will often help you come up with a better or more modern solution for the customer, and so can help establish a better trading relationship where they trust your advice and knowledge and see you as an expert.

For this and other sales tips, training programmes and general selling advice, contact us at To Market which provides training for telesales, telemarketing and internal sales teams across the Midlands : Leicestershire, Northamptonshire, Birmingham, Coventry, Derby, Nottingham, Milton Keynes, Cambridge, Newmarket, Daventry, Wellingborough, Corby, Kettering, Peterborough, Rugby and Warwick. Contact us info@tomarket.co.uk or by phone 01858 461148.