I’ve just been reading the latest newsletter from Emyr Williams of Business 121 which is linked to Business Bricks (see Paradox of Choice). He describes going into a shop to look for a digital camera. Not only was there too much choice but the choice was all about features and there were no sales staff around to help him make sense of them. It has been so well known and taught on even the most basic sales courses that customers do not buy features, they buy benefits.
Why do so many major retailers and manufacturers insist on trying to sell goods by listing the benefits? This is not complex. If you feel that a feature will be of importance to your customers, tell them why. Here is a simple example. A new car offers 0-60 in 8 seconds. That in itself will not turn people on. The fact that it will pull away quickly at traffic lights or overtake safely are the benefits which will sell it. A simple way of deciding on the benefit of a feature is to use the link words which means that. So if you run a shop which offers late opening on Sunday think “Late opening Sunday which means that customers can get things which they may have forgotten earlier.
Small businesses would do well to note that so many large businesses seem to have forgotten the lesson that people buy benefits and not features. By concentrating on benefits in their promotion and sales activities they can gain the edge on their competitors.