Because of the continuous change, rapid obsolescence, and an uncertain economy, certain risk factors of buying the wrong products and services has become greater than ever before.
One of our powerful needs is for security, and any buying decision that represents uncertainty triggers the feeling of risk that threatens that security.
There are four main risk factors that contribute to the perception of risk in the mind of the customer.
Risk Factor 1: Size of the Sale
The first risk factors that contribute to risk is the size of the sale. The larger the scale, the more money involved, the greater the risk.
If a person is buying a package of Lifesavers, the risk of satisfaction or dissatisfaction is insignificant. But if a person is buying a computer system for their company, the risk factor is magnified by hundreds of thousands of times and they will want to ensure that you can provide them consumer protection.
Whenever you are selling a product that has a high price on it, you must be aware that risk enters into the buyer’s calculations immediately.
Risk Factor 2: Number of People Affected
The second of the four risk factors contributing to the perception of risk is the number of people who will be affected by the buying decision. Almost every complex buying decision involves several people.
There are people who must use the products and services. There are people who must pay for the products and services. There are people who are dependent of the results expected from the products and services. If a person is extremely sensitive to the opinions of others, this factor alone can cause him or her to put off a buying decision.
Risk Factor 3: Length of Life of the Product
Another one of the risk factors contributing to the perception of risk is the length of life of the product. A products and services that, once installed, is meant to last for several years, generates the feeling of risk. The customer panics and thinks, “What if it doesn’t work and I’m stuck with it?”
Risk Factor 4: Unfamiliarity
Lastly, one of the major risk factors is the customer’s unfamiliarity with you, your company, and your products and services. A first-time buyer, one who has not bought the products and services before, or who has not bought it from you, is often nervous and requires a lot of hand-holding.
Anything new or different makes the average customer tense and uneasy. This is why new products and services, or a new business relationship with your company, has to be presented as a natural extension of what the customer is already doing.
In every case, you must overcome the customer’s fear of risk if you are going to make the sale. Everything you do, from the first contact, through closing, the delivery and installation of products and services, and the follow-up to the sale, must be done with the customer’s perception of risk uppermost in your thinking.
Successful sales people are those who position their products and services as the lowest-risk products and services available to satisfy the particular need or achieve the particular goal of the customer.
Safe Products and Services
Your job is to be the low-risk provider, not necessarily the low-price vendor. Your job is to demonstrate clearly that your products and services represents the safest and most secure purchase decision rather than merely being the least expensive or highest quality.
Brian Tracy is Chairman and CEO of Brian Tracy International, a company specializing in the training and development of individuals and organizations. Brian’s goal is to help people achieve their personal and business goals faster and easier than they ever imagined.
Brian Tracy has consulted for more than 1,000 companies and addressed more than 5,000,000 people in 5,000 talks and seminars throughout the US, Canada and 55 other countries worldwide. As a Keynote speaker and seminar leader, he addresses more than 250,000 people each year.