In these Covid, shut-in times, the economy has shifted. Work people used to do is either gone, or severely reduced from a labor standpoint. Automobiles and restaurants are prime examples. We hardly drive our cars, and we learned how to feed ourselves. The automobile and restaurant business still going are operating in a limited fashion. Life has evolved into something different than it was a few months ago.
These changes drive many people in to what are essentially door to door salespeople. Most of them will fail. They will fail for many different reasons. Generally, it from trying to sell a product no one really wants. Imagine trying to sell a $2,000.00 vacuum cleaner, when a reasonable vacuum cleaner can be picked up at a retail store for less than $100.00.
Imagine being a blanket salesman in the hottest part of the summer. Your perspective clientele are trying to find ways they can afford to stay cool, and you want them to buy something to keep them warm. Good luck with that.
The list of items that can be sold from home is practically unlimited. The list of items that one can make a living at are woefully few. Think of the blanket salesman in the summer. Or someone trying to sell canned vegetables in a farming community.
There is a formula for selling most people miss completely. What generally happens with home product sales is, the potential new salesperson falls in love with a product. Whether it is makeup or pots and pans. The host or seller has an easy sell. They regurgitate the sales pitch that has been proven most effective over the years, and from there the product sells itself.
The customer, come newest salesperson does not see other people can not get as excited about the product as they are. Most sales of this type are made on personality of the sales agent. This extends in houses, cars, and smaller ticket items. People buy a product because they ‘could’ use it, but more often because they like the seller.
Economics is also a major player in successful sales. A seller needs to sell a product that is inline with their income or less than their income. When people buy a product from someone, more often than not, the seller is perceived to be a person like themselves. Rarely do sales cross income levels.
Which brings itself to the product being sold. Selling chocolate bars door to door for $1.00 each lends itself to a much larger marketable audience than selling a hand made automobile. The key is finding a product that fits the disposable income in the sellers income range. If the seller is in the lower middle class, not poor, but not a lot of disposable income, the customers they will relate to best will also be in the same economic range.
With that being said, it is a poor business and personal decision to attempt to sell a product out of that economic price range. If the disposable income is $25.00 a week, the best product to be selling to that group is no more than that level.
Selling chocolate bars for a dollar each is easier and potentially more profitable than selling a line of jewelry that averages $50.00 an item. It’s all a matter of disposable income combined with want. More people want sweets than want jewelry. Sellers of items within the categories above, have a chance at making a profit. Violate one of the above rules, and go broke painfully, and usually quickly.
The potential new home salesperson, unfortunately doesn’t see these factors as they are sitting in a, ” ” party, being offered items to buy they really do not need. They see what looks like a successful Host or Hostess, painlessly making sales. They think they can too.
What happens next is a short road of expense and frustration. They want to sell the product too. They find they need a sales kit. The kit usually costs around the upper limit of what their disposable income, plus a little more. But they are enamored with the idea of easy money, and buy what is essentially the bare minimum amount of product.
When their kit arrives, they call their family and friends and start setting up, ‘parties’. Depending on their family and social circle, this will usually be one to three sales sessions. Of course without much effort, they make enough in sales to make it look promising.
Next, is the purchase of more product so they can offer more at the ‘parties’. This is usually the profit they have made plus more of their own money which is getting to be a little less disposable, and a little more painful to part with.
About the third round of this two things happen. First, they have a large amount of money tied up in product. Second, their source of people who are willing to host ‘parties’ is about dried up. Finding new customers turns out to be more of a challenge than they expected.
The downward spiral solidifies its appearance. Sales are beyond slumping, they have dried up. What looked like a real opportunity now looks like a dead end. The only compensation is the seller can use most of the product themselves, if that is compensation.
Meanwhile, if they had invested in selling chocolate bars, and were creative they may well have a successful business in the making. Chocolate is cheap. Once a chocolate bar is eaten, the chocolate bar has met a need. Chocolate is cheap to replace, over and over and over. Nothing like repeat customers.
Here are the six important Home Seller take-away bullets from above, though there are many more factors to consider:
1. Be aware of the the changed social structure and changed economy effect what people want.
2. The first sell-able product you are offered, may not be the best choice.
3. Find a product people want, and will buy again. One time sales stink.
4. Keep emotion out of your decision making process.
5. Sell within your economic and social group.
6. Be cautious of how much you personally have to invest in your sales kit. Will you personally use it all if the business doesn’t thrive and survive?