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Guide to Selling Products

Selling is a challenging yet potentially lucrative activity that involves matching of product benefits with customer needs. Regardless of the product you are selling, your success would depend on three variables: what you sell, how you sell, and who you sell to.

What You Sell

Determining what products to sell is one of the most challenging steps for a startup. Your options are virtually limitless so the task can be confusing. To help narrow down your options, factor in variables such as market demand, profit margin, and product quality. Consider the following questions:

  • Is the product marketable?
  • Is it popular?
  • Is it profitable?
  • Is it a quality product?
  • Is it something you know about?
  • Are you interested in the product, and is it something you believe in?

Who to Sell

Marketing a product is not selling the actual product per se, but its benefits. You need to be able to show that these benefits can match customer needs and wants. Thus, it is important to know your target market – what are their needs and wants, their preferences and tastes.

If you’re going to sell baby products, then you need to know what parents want for their kids. For instance, do they prefer eco-friendly materials for diapers? If you’re selling men’s work or office clothes, what fashion style do they prefer?

Think also about how your product and service can help customers in their needs. If you are able to show that your product and service are more attractive that your competitors, there’s a good chance you will be able to make repeat sales.

How to Sell

How you market your product is an important factor to selling success. There are many channels for promoting your product, ranging from personal contact to print (e.g. leaflets, flyers) to television and Internet promotion.

When it comes to promoting your product, you can learn from the greatest entrepreneurs. Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Startbucks, AT&T and many more don’t sell a product; they sell experience, such as happiness, fun, convenience, etc. Insurance agents sell “peace of mind”, not annuities. Financial planners sell “financial freedom”, not mutual funds. What experience does your product offer?

Price is another major selling point. It should be more attractive than your competitors, but it should also give you a good profit margin.

Selling products does not end once a sale is made. There will be complaints to resolve, questions to answer. Make sure you’re always around to provide great after-sales service, too. By establishing good relations with your customer, you encourage them to come back and even refer your business to other people.



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