If They Don’t Need It, Don’t Sell It

boy We’re renting an apartment in Beaver Creek. It’s a two bedroom on the ground level. It’s great for a young couple or two friends. It’s close to downtown, it’s a decent size and utilities and cable are included. It’s not a good place for families. It’s just not set up well for a family. So when we get calls on the place, I qualify the inquiry. I ask them what they are looking for. How many people will be sharing the unit, do they have pets, where they work etc. I want to understand as best I can who they are, what their expectations are and how they use their primary residence. If they mention they are a family, or looking to start a family I let them know I don’t think the place is for them.

We don’t have a problem renting to families. We just know the apartment is not conducive to kids. There is no formal sitting area, it’s on a busy street, it’s garden level and therefore doesn’t get much sunlight. It’s just not conducive to families. If they want to see it, regardless, I’m always willing to show it to them. What I don’t want to do is waste their time. The few times we have shown it to a family, they’ve agreed. It’s a cute place, just not for them.

In sales, there are times when your product or service isn’t a fit. Do you tell this to the customer? Do you let your customer know when a product or service won’t deliver what they need or are looking for? Do you give them more information to help them better understand what it is they are getting? Do you warn them against making the decision. If you don’t have what they need do you steer them to a competitor who does? You should!

Selling something your customer doesn’t need does no one any favors. Your customer will be unhappy. You will spend more on customer service. They won’t buy from you again and they will tell others how bad you are. It takes guts as a sales person to tell a customer your product isn’t what they are looking for. If you are a true trusted adviser, that is exactly what you should do. Sales isn’t about giving people what they want, it’s about helping them understand what they need.

We let families know our place isn’t a good fit up front. We let them know we’d be happy to show it but for reasons X,Y,Z it probably isn’t a good fit. When we do this they are extremely thankful for our honesty and for not wasting their time trying to sell them on something that clearly won’t work.

Don’t waste your time or your customer’s time selling them something that doesn’t fit.

If they don’t need it, don’t sell it!

What do you think? Do you tell them?