Woodworkers: Complexity Stops Your Progress

By Rick Hill | Posted: 05/22/2012 10:48AM


Woodworking Sales Expert RIck Hill Last week I wrote about my friend Simon who can't stop talking about how smart he is long enough to take an order. If your company has used a Simon to create your sales literature, pricing, or product options, they are most likely very detailed and very confusing.

The market has changed and your customers are more confused, pressured, overworked and out of time than ever before. They subscribe to the "If it ain't broke, don't fix it mentality." The constant barrage of emails, phone calls and text messages force the busy decision makers to only take action on urgent issues. Even when it makes good sense to change, they avoid the potential risk of more work that new products can create.

Customer's don't have time to wade through Simon's extensive literature and power point presentation, so they take the simplest, easiest-to-understand choice instead. Often, the customers will refuse to make any decision, living with the status quo instead of changing for the better.

How do you break down their time barrier and get your message across? Focus your efforts on making their lives easier, creating choices that are simple, showing that your company has a true value and understands the customer's goals. Clean out your literature, power points and brochures of anything that does not add value to the customer. Put all the company history, technical descriptions, and glossy photos at the back of your information and create a "Starter Page".

The Starter Page is everything a customer needs to know to order your product at a glance. Basic options, contact information, order quantities, shipping estimates, lead times and even pricing should be easy to find.

Your customer is getting over 150 emails, 30 calls, and constant interruptions. They don't have time to do a lot of thinking, so they make quick decisions, or none at all. Simple concepts, easy to order programs, and clear instructions create more sales.

Good Hunting,




About the Author

Rick Hill

Rick Hill is a Contract Buyer Specialist with Timberland Wood Products, Sheboygan, WI. Timberland contracts with woodworking companies to help them lower their total lumber costs at timberlandwood.com. Rick comes from a 20 year history in the cabinet and furniture supply industry. On fall weekends Rick can be found banding hawks and falcons at the Cedar Grove Ornithological Park. You can reach Rick at rick@timberlandwood.com.

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Rob Grant    
Northern Virginia (metro DC)  |  May, 23, 2012 at 07:34 AM

Rick, Your statements ring so true. I could not agree more as we have stated the exact, same scenarios of our typical customer base. Those of us situated in densely populated cities find that the overworked, no time available consumer is the new norm.

Rick Hill    
Glenbeulah, WI  |  May, 24, 2012 at 08:35 AM

Rob, if simple selling techniques are of interest to you, I would recommend the book Snap Selling by Jill Konrath. Lot's of nice techniques, and justifications for selling in a simple fashion. Rick


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