In many companies, executives go out and present their products or services with the assumption that people are in a good mood to buy. The mantra is that all you have to do is cut the noise, get the customer’s attention and everything will be perfect.
But that’s a myth. Between work, kids, education, and other chores, shoppers are often mentally drained, and the pandemic has brought their burnout to levels that modern businesses have never faced before. In the midst of the pandemic, sellers need proactive steps to motivate buyers to close deals and stay engaged.
1. Keep it simple
People make buying decisions largely based on how they are feeling in the moment. Otherwise, the buyer’s regrets wouldn’t be important. You rationalize more thoroughly afterwards. And the last thing people want when they are overwhelmed is to feel like shopping is a complex process. So cut down on anything that makes the transaction difficult or overly bloated.
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This process applies to the entire customer journey. For example, you can advertise them after interacting with one or two other recommended products, rather than providing them with a full page of options. Or, you can pull the customer service chat button out of the weed and make it more prominent on your website.
A good example of this is Amazon. Their website is easy to navigate, but they also offer options like subscriptions to items that you purchase frequently. You can use connected tools (like your smart devices) to order using voice commands. This tells customers that their purchase will be easy and won’t interfere with other things they need to do. Your user experience is characterized by convenience and transparency in prices, delivery times and the like.
2. Make them feel included
When people are mentally exhausted, they often try to console themselves with what is familiar to them. You look at what others are doing to get your bearings on what to do. If you can help them see that other people shop like them, you will give them a sense of belonging, security, and orientation. Which means they have to shop more too.
One way to help people focus more on “your” audience is to create custom audiences on your social media platforms. This makes it easy to send targeted messages to specific populations. Also, you give people an interactive tool that they can use to get feedback, recommendations, basic product information, and camaraderie.
3. Realize the weather instead of trying to sell it
There is no way to hide from the current weather. Today it means everyone is talking about the pandemic, but the weather could look completely different in a year. The best example used today is the dots or squares businesses place on their retail space to remind people of social distancing. There is no way to hide from this unprecedented crisis, and it is a responsible step for companies to recognize it rather than hide from it.
For some time now, customers have been demanding transparency, authenticity and truthfulness. Unfortunately, with so many changes, this practice can seem like an intentional transfer of the current climate to buyers. It’s like they’re trying to sell their logs as part of the service. Actually, it’s not a service at all. This is life in the moment and buyers will not tolerate being manipulated or ignoring their basic reality.
Instead of trying to sell the weather or pretending you can turn it into something buyers need, just talk about it. Realize that everyone is in the same boat: tired and frustrated. Customers will react much more to this empathic admission than to the fact that they still have something ahead of them.
4. Use some humor
Even when times are easy, humor goes a long way in creating a fun and memorable experience that customers can enjoy. And when things get tough, humor can help clients see your empathy in a more personal way. Build relationships and you can remind your audience that there are still good things to enjoy. If they can stay a little more positive, then shopping for a bright future with real goals makes a lot more sense. Not only that, but humor can also defuse tension. When customers have problems with customer service, you can blur the situation so people don’t leave the transaction with a bad taste in their mouth.
Contrary to what you hear in many business circles, consumer buying motivation is not static and not always very high. Of course, it disappears. However, it is possible to keep fluctuation somewhat controlled. If you have humor, help customers relate to others, acknowledge people’s reality instead of constantly selling and simplifying things, you can create a transparent business that encourages buyers to keep shopping. Try any of these techniques to inspire buyers and meet your sales goals now and in the future.
- Read: You Are What You Sell: 7 Tips To Improve Your Sales Skills