Do you sell Customers/Clients what they want or what they need?

I asked this question on my LinkedIn updates and received several emails asking clarification/explanation with some people coming to their own conclusions which is always very interesting.

Before I explain the reason for my question, I just want to explain the difference when a Customer/Client buys what they need versus what they want.

Need creates a buying decision usually formed by the conscious side of the brain, hence the saying, they are buying with their brain/wallet, it is usually a decision the customer forms without much advice given, this is usually a low purchase although it can be on the other end of the scale due to many other factors.

Want on the other hand is formed by consulting both the conscious and sub-conscious mind, it has much more emotion, ego, social status attached to it, hence the saying, they are buying with their heart, interestingly enough a want purchase has no budget as such and people are willing to spend much more than a need purchase.

Now to the reason behind my question, either way, it is virtually impossible to get to the why buy unless we first build rapport with our Customers/Clients, which will lower the anxiety and stress level then it will pave the way for us o qualify them in the correct manner, only then we can sell them the right product which in turn will change us from order takers/wholesalers to professional sales CONSULTANTS.

The whole point behind my question is the fact that no matter what the buying motivators are or what the why buys are, we need to build rapport, create a relationship, qualify, then agree what is suitable for the Customer/Client.

Happy Consultative Selling

Alan Whaley