Selling to Women – What Men and the Women Who Sell to Women Should Know

Doug Dvorak

Is it necessary to adapt your selling style when your prospect or customer is a woman?
You bet! Extensive studies and research have been conducted on this topic. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know why – women are different than men. They think differently, communicate differently, decide differently, shop differently, and even buy differently than men.

Selling to Women – Differences You Should Know
Whether you sell b2b or b2c, below are a few simple tips to keep in mind that just might get results –more sales!

Women think differently.
Their brains are even wired differently. Simply put, they are far more emotional than the majority of men. If you want to achieve success when selling to a female customer, trigger an emotion to gain their trust. Just be sure you are sincere and that sincerity comes through. Otherwise, a woman will easily see that you are simply “selling” and not “helping.” Then, you can sell something!

For example, you might say, “I know you had a bad experience in the past, but you can be confident that I’ll be with you every step of the way, to make sure you get the results you want.” Or,
“I have many single female clients just like you. My own daughter got a divorce and found herself to be “suddenly single.” Women worry about their future. They have found that an experienced financial advisor can provide them with guidance and create an investment strategy suitable for their own needs. When they see their accounts grow it gives them the peace of mind they need. Jane, if you make the decision to roll over your funds over to me, you can be confident I will have your best interests at heart.”

“Miss Jones, we’ve been in business for twenty years. That’s because we’re honest. You can be sure I wouldn’t advise you to get a new transmission if you really didn’t need one.”

Men are more transactional.
They want to close the deal and be done with it. Women are relational. They want to feel a connection to you and your business. And, for most women, relationships and service trump product and price.

Connect when you want to sell to a woman.
If you are in retail, a warm smile, handshake, and a “How Can I help you today?” Never – “Can I help you?”  Boring. Another good opening would be, “Hi, I’m John. How’s your day going so far?” Spend more time opening and exploring as opposed to closing.

Women communicate differently.
There are many communication differences you should expect when selling to a women. One thing you already know is that they talk a lot more. Let them.

When listening, men want facts and figures. Women want the complete story. Give it to them.

Men are generally more focused on getting the best price, whereas women are more interested in learning about quality and getting the right product or service to suit their needs.

Women research and ask questions – many questions. They need all information and details before they will close the deal. Because men oftentimes view this as weak or indecisive, they can be condescending toward women without ever realizing it.

Friends of mine recently bought a new home and went shopping for new carpet to install in their children’s rooms. They shopped at two stores and had very different experiences. During both shopping experiences the wife spoke a lot about her concerns and asked many detailed questions about the different carpet products.

At the first store they visited, the salesperson seemed to get irritated with all of the questions, and the answers he provided were short and uninformative. Even her husband began rolling his eyes at one point. At the second store, the salesperson confirmed and agreed with her concerns, and he answered all of her questions in a thorough, interested manner. He took his time with her. And this time around, her husband valued the questions and answers. Can you guess where they ended up purchasing carpet? And by the way, the prices at the second store were slightly higher.

Women buy differently.
What’s important to women is who they buy from. They will buy from a person and a business where they feel a sense of connectivity. They will buy from a business with a great reputation, and where they receive a stellar customer experience in every aspect.

Women Shop Differently
Men like to buy. They will go into a store, and get what they need.  Women like to shop. They are likely to shop on the Internet first, and even buy on the Internet. When in a store, they like to feel and touch the merchandise. They like to have choices.  They also notice every little thing about your business. Whether you sell b2b and especially if you sell b2c, make sure your company is “female friendly.”

A man buys on a mission, and he’ll be in and out of the store within 30 minutes. If a man needs a new pair of black slacks, he’ll head right to the pants section and select his size. If the pants look good, he may even buy two pair so he doesn’t have to be bothered again.

A woman, on the other hand, shops to explore. Even if she knows she needs a new pair of slacks for work, she’ll walk into the store with an open mind about looking for professional attire. She’ll shop other merchandise, and if she likes what she sees she’ll leave with the store with a new pair of slacks, a dress, and a pair of shoes.

Selling to a woman takes superior selling skills, class, professionalism, and a great deal more knowledge. For now, think about the simple tips in this article and ask yourself this question-

If you were a woman, would you buy from you?

For information on the Selling to Women sales training program,
call (847) 477-7376. Or, (847) 359-6969.

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