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Real Estate Sales

“We Are Just-Looking”: How To Deal With This Sales Phrase

Today I’m responding to one of my comments on my articles, and it comes around that whole concept of the ideal prospect, and what they’re asking is, you know, how do we work with sales prospects who are “just-looking”.  I don’t care who you are, if you’re involved in any kind of selling whatsoever or any kind of customer service, you’re going to find out about people who are “just-looking”. So today we’re going to talk about “just lookers”.  “Just looking”, and these are important, sometimes we could call that an objection, but really, when you really take a look at it, it’s actually a kind of a nervous response that people go through in the buying cycle.  You think about it…  you’ve been in, you know, a store before, you probably walked in and you’ve probably had something on your mind where you wanted to purchase something, and maybe you don’t do it all the time, but you can walk right into that store but the purpose to buy a shoe, or to turnaround buy a coat, and you’ll walk in the sales clerk will come up and they’ll say, “Can I help you?”, and your first response is “I’m just looking”.  And that really shows up a lot, and it’s what I call the first objection.  

The first objection is the objection that naturally just comes out of our lips without us even thinking. It’s like a knee-jerk reaction, or what I call a spontaneous reaction to being approached in the sales process.  So you got to know the first objection, always happens.  So how do we handle the first objection? You know you’re always going to have that little bit of resistance.  It’s going to show up either at the beginning, you know, in the first couple of interactions that you’re going to have, and it’s just going to be blurted out.  It’s probably something that people aren’t even thinking about, so you got to know how to handle that.  I was taught in my training as a salesperson, years ago, the best way to actually change that is actually not pursuing the client.  And so what you would do is you would actually acknowledge the client coming into your store or location, or wherever you’re going, but you would not hunt them down and say “can I help you?”, because that only relates to the same objection.  So if you just say, “Hi, how are you doing? I’ll be with you in a few minutes. . “, by the time they work, walk around, or you have a little bit of conversation back and forth, and if you look like you’re busy doing something, and you get to them later on, by the time you get to them that first reaction is gone because they feel comfortable again.  So that it’s really what I call a deferral.  

So if you’re in a sales process or you’re working with anybody you’re involved within the sales process as a buyer the first objection is always deferred.  So deferral, is really not pushing it away, but it’s really acknowledging and saying we’ll get to it later. And so deferring the objection can really be a blessing if you’re in the sales process.  Just acknowledge that it’s there and then work around it.  So if you can turn around to make it so it doesn’t happen if you’re getting the same objection all the time, you may want to turn around and if it’s happening at the same place in your sales process, take a look at what you’re saying just before that and see if there’s something you can do to tweak it so that you can change the way the outcome comes.  That’s just natural and normal and that’s what we’ll probably do.  Now, what does that mean to you though, as the sales leader in this sales process? 

Let me show you what I’m thinking here.  There is a sales process that for buyers, so the buyer’s process really has seven steps to it, and in those seven steps, I try and encourage all of my clients and all of the people that I teach in my seminars, that in those seven steps, the first three or four are all what I call logical.  And that’s I need to you know to decide if this is something that’s valuable to me.  I’m going to do a value proposition on it. I’m going to get more information.  I’m going to see which process I need, or which product I need, pardon me, I’m going to look at all those different things, and somewhere in this around halfway, they shift into emotion.  So when you get this particular “just-looking”, they’re at the very, very, very beginning.  They’re right here.  They’re just getting going in the process.  

Now that doesn’t mean that they don’t need any help.  In today’s marketplace, we have Google, and Google will allow us to look up anything that we want and get enormous amounts of information.  The bad part is, we don’t know what the information means, usually. We don’t know with all the different opinions on the internet, which ones we’re supposed to be considering, which ones we don’t, and so they will still need to, the buyers or the sellers, or pardon me, the buyers are still going to need to turn around and search out an expert to find out how to figure out what they really want to need.  So they may be at the beginning here.  They may be just looking, which is 100% accurate on what somebody’s doing.  They’re looking around trying to grab information.  “Do I want the one, you know, the car that’s got a four-door, two-door, do I want these features? Do I want that warranty? Which manufacturers best for me? What style of vehicle?”They’re going to want to go through that entire process, and yes, they’re just looking; However, that information process is different for every single person. 

So one person might be two questions, and the next person could be two years. And so you’ve got to know that the longer that you’re willing to stay with them through this process, the less likely you’re going to lose a qualified individual, because the next time that they come through the door, they’ve got the information, now they’re at the stage where they’re starting to get a little bit more, “Can you tell me a little bit more about the specifics about this particular vehicle?”, and they’ve narrowed it down to one or two.  Now wouldn’t it be great that you would never have your “just looker” go and leave your place of business, or leave your service industry and go to someone else?  Because if you could keep those people when they’re just looking even if it takes a year, two years, six months, five months, two days, whatever, two hours, you got to know that the just lookers turned into just buyers as a certain amount of percentage in each industry.  So why not just take that and put that to use a matter of fact in certain industries, like the car industry, they can tell where you’re at in the sales process, and they know that if you come onto the lot, and you’relooking at a vehicle, you actually take it for a test drive, how long it is before you’re going to be making a purchase, they know that and they know at what percentage rates you’re going to get (those people making a purchase), and they know if you can take the vehicle home for an evening, the likelihood of purchase goes way up, and the time frame goes way down.  

So you know all of those statistics really do make a big difference because it changes the way that we look.  I know that some people get really frustrated with tire kickers, because they eat up a lot of time and you can help that process out by getting people very clear, and guiding them through the process, so they’re not jumping all over the place getting information.  And if you are the person that they’re coming to as the industry expert to get all the information, more than likely “just lookers” are going to stick with you and make “just purchases”. Now I’ve seen some brilliant people do this. I remember one individual in the real estate industry in Toronto, and his statistics were just bizarre.  If he got a phone call about somebody who was “just-looking” he could convert those people over to a buyer, and he would have them purchase in no time.  And so how do you actually manage to do that? Well, it’s the little things.  It’s sticking with them, guiding them through the process, knowing what the next step is for them, and taking them to the next step.  So its really about in your head when it comes to “just lookers”.  

You have to decide in your mind whether that’s a potential client that you’re going to work with, and you’re going to take them to the next step, or you’re going to turn around and get really kind of irritated with their inquiries, and just push them off. Now I’ve been on both sides of this fence as a buyer, and I got to tell you it’s really disheartening from a buyer’s perspective to walk on to a site, you know, I’ve been I’m thinking when we were buying our RV, I actually walked on to an RV site and the salesperson there didn’t have a time of day for me.  Now he didn’t think that we were going to make a purchase.  Why? Because we were out Sunday shopping just taking a look around, and he literally just told me to go take a look, and if you find something you like let me know.  He wouldn’t even answer my questions.  I was so disoriented with what he had done, that I got really mad and we would never ever visited that site again. We never went back there and purchased, but we did purchase something, and it was substantial. 

And so that individual lost tens of thousands of dollars, in you know a sale, that he could have made because he just didn’t want to turn around,because I was just looking that day.  Now it didn’t take that long either.  We were looking one day, and literally three months later we purchased.  So it wasn’t along period of time.  So how does that happen for you? I’m not sure, you need to decide what you’re going to do, but I got to tell you, when people come in from your traction cycle and you have certain things that you’re doing all the way through and you get somebody two years down the line that says, “Hey Randy we made, you know, or we contacted you at such-and-such a time where we’ve been in contact, or whatever, and you know can we talk more? It’s free money. It’s absolutely free money.  We’ve already done the work, and so we just building the relationship.  So it’s really important that you don’t lose the good potential for possible clients.  And so I’m encouraging you to take your “just lookers,” who are just looking, and consider them as buyers at the beginning of the buying cycle, so that you can help them better get where they need to go. I hope this little tidbit helps you out when it comes to deciding how you’re going to handle “just lookers”.  See you then.