Selling Features and Benefits
Anyone can walk through model homes with prospective buyers, pointing out bedrooms, bathrooms, cabinetry and cooktops, but a good sales professional knows there is a world of difference between showing a house and selling a home.
Today's new home buyers are looking to buy or build their dream home, in some cases, their forever home, and they are counting on you to convince them that your home is a better choice than the competition. High on their list are features and benefits.
What Are Features and Benefits?
Features are characteristics that your product does or includes. Benefits are the reasons customers buy the product. Services may also differ from one another in having distinctive features and benefits. For instance, one builder may use master painters while another uses laborers to paint. Both will say they do painting, but one has master painters (a feature) and produces a better-looking paint job (a definite benefit).
Remember, what is important to one buyer may not be to another so be sure to learn all you can about his specific wants and needs, then tailor your features and benefits presentation accordingly.
Know Your Buyer
Once you know your buyer's basic needs, it's time to begin gathering as much additional information as possible about family, lifestyle, pets, hobbies, everything. The more you know about your buyers, the easier it will be to identify which features they will be most interested in learning about during the model or inventory home demonstration.
Do they enjoy cooking? No? Then don't spend more than a minute talking about the convection oven.
Do they entertain? Take them into the back yard and paint a picture of what it will be like having their friends over, everyone gathered around the fire pit, that gorgeous view in the distance.
Avoid Feature Dumping!
A few weeks ago, I scored a video mystery shop that had such a negative impact on me, I still can't get it out of my mind. The sales agent (I'll call him Danny) started off well, but while touring an inventory home, he began pointing out every tiny detail involved in the building process. Nearly an hour later, (the buyers on information overload and I considering early retirement) Danny asked for the sale. The buyers told him they needed some time to think about it and that's when Danny started feature dumping like an auctioneer! He insisted they all return to the kitchen for one more look at the appliances, which he described for a second time, in minute detail, then back to the family room for another peek at those awesome maintenance-free hardwood floors, and out to the garage for one more look at the hybrid hot water heater. After a half-hour spent talking non-stop, reviewing every single feature he liked in the home but never asking what was important to his buyers, Danny accomplished little more than revealing how unprepared and desperate he was.
Again, find out what matters to your buyer and focus your presentation on those features and the benefits they provide, because if something isn't important to them, it won't have an impact on whether or not they purchase the home.
Knowledge is Power
The more you know about every feature available in your homes and how those features can benefit your home buyers, the more smoothly your presentation will flow. Do your homework. Find out all there is to know about each appliance, HVAC system, how radiant barriers work, etc. Most buyers won't care about every feature, more will want to know about some, and most will be curious about a few.
Discover your buyers' needs, be prepared to demonstrate the features and benefits that meet or exceed those needs, and you'll be on your way to winning more sales!
Until next time . . .