Want Fantastic Sales Success?


What Does Today's Customer Want?

By Michael Hunter
Head Coach & Trainer
Business Development Resources (BDR)

Today's customer expects choices. Regardless of the product or service they are purchasing, today's customer wants to be aware of all their options so that they can make an informed decision.

This desire is prevalent in purchase decisions across nearly every industry, not simply HVAC equipment.

Consider the tactics often employed by truck manufacturers. They have expanded their original strategy of offering three options equipped with various features and accessories marketed as "good-better-best," to add a fourth tier: "fantastic."

A "fantastic" option usually includes all of the premium features and accessories in addition to some upgrades unavailable at the other tiers. This new option also costs considerably more than the "best" option. That comparison makes your "best" option seem more affordable.

Offering choices provides benefits to both you and your customers.

By offering your customers choices, they will:

  • Understand what is actually available.
  • Be able to make a truly informed choice.
  • Be aware of high efficiency equipment and accessories that can improve their system efficiency and comfort.

And you will:

  • Be able to apply an informative, non-threatening sales approach.
  • Have the opportunity to discuss the benefits of high-efficiency equipment and accessories.
  • Raise the amount of your average sale.

How can offering choices raise the amount of your average sale?

  • When you offer your customers one choice, you only have one opportunity to make a sale. If you are only offering one option, that one option probably isn't a higher-efficiency, higher-margin option it's probably a basic option with lower margins. Let's assign this base option 50 points. Under this scenario, since all of your sales fall into this category, your average sale is 50 points.
  • If you offer your customers two choices, a basic option and high-efficiency option, you are likely to see 50 percent of your customers choose each one. We'll assign a value of 100 points to the high-efficiency option, bringing your average up to 75 points.
  • When you add a third choice to the mix (base level, mid-level and high-efficiency), something interesting happens. You may think 25 percent will choose the base level option, 50 percent the mid-level option and 25 percent the high-efficiency option, but the vast majority of customers do not want the cheapest option when presented with three choices. If two-thirds choose the mid-level option and one-third choose the high-efficiency option, your average raises to 83 points.
  • By adding a fourth "fantastic" option, you will see your average rise even higher.

When you offer your customers choices, you are helping them make informed decisions and ensuring that they are aware of all the options you have available, including high-efficiency equipment and accessories. Remember that a customer who is unaware of a premium option certainly can't decide to purchase it.

Providing the customer more choices provides you with more opportunities to increase your sales of high-efficiency equipment and accessories, and in turn, raises your average sale.

We will discuss the specifics of how to offer choices with equipment, accessories and maintenance in future articles.

Contact your distributor for more information about how BDR training programs can empower your business with the knowledge and skills you need to drive profit and growth in your business.

About the Author:
Michael Hunter has 17 years of experience in the HVAC industry spanning multiple roles in distribution, as a territory manager and as the highly successful general manager of a business in Idaho. He currently is a Business Development Resources (BDR) trainer & coach who leads the Foundations for Profit & Growth training class.

About BDR:
BDR is the premier provider of business training and coaching services to HVAC contractors. BDR is an authorized training provider for International Comfort Products.