Or Do They Only Think That Is Their Reason? – by Bob Burg

Last post we discussed why — in most situations — everyone loses when selling on low price alone. The suggestion is to sell on value, not on price.

I received a question: “What percentage of buyers do you think buy on price?”

While I don’t have any figures, I’m not sure the question itself is correct.


Because, if you ask people what their determining factor is in the buying process, many (not all, but many) will tell you it’s low price. Yet, the results are often quite different.

Have you ever walked into a store determined to buy something simply on low price and come away with a better, more expensive product and were happy it worked out that way?

Most people will answer yes. And, it was most likely the result of good salesmanship. No, not in selling a person something they don’t want or need. Rather, finding out if what the customer wants is really the cheapy brand or something of higher quality. And, a professional salesperson determines that by asking questions and listening.

Of course, not everyone claims low price as their ultimate buying value. Personally, I tend to buy more on convenience. Others I know buy on style. Still, others buy on what they believe will most impress others. I’m sure there are other reasons, as well and I’m not judging any of them. I’m also not implying, or saying that any of them is the correct reason.

I am saying that “low price” is often what people think is their determining factor when it usually isn’t.

The Point: don’t come down on price thinking that is what is going to make up your prospect’s mind. Sure, they’d like the lowest price they can obtain from you in exchange for the most value they can obtain from you. Who can blame them? All else being equal, that makes great sense.

For reasons explained in the previous post, however, we know that selling on price alone will hurt both you and your prospect.

So, as a sales professional, don’t get sucked into thinking that what you automatically need to do is lower your price. After all, they’re not buying on price…even if they really believe that is their motivating factor.

Bonus thought: If you are a “price buyer” then you will most likely believe your prospects are, too. Your inclination will then be to focus on low price. And, you’ll be surprised when they still don’t buy from you (unless you’ve luckily come across another true price buyer). The same for whatever type buyer you are. So, remember…your buyer is not you.

Find out what’s important to them, not to you. And sell based on what they value.


Bob Burg is coauthor (with John David Mann) of the international bestseller, “The Go-Giver.”  To download the first chapters of Bob’s books, visit www.burg.com.