||Last Updated: Dec 21st, 2004 - 22:04:52
If you are in business, you know that it is much easier to sell a great product as compared to a mediocre one. But what separates a great product from a "ho-hum" product? What products make people reach for their wallets and hand over their money? What products are really easy to sell?
Great products deliver enduring value
The bottom line for every customer is "What's in it for me?" The more your product or service shouts, "Here's how you win!" the more value the customer will perceive, and the faster they will order.
People buy products and services for many reasons. They want value (defined as maximum benefits for least cost) and they want benefits – personal, financial and/or emotional. High-quality products, such as leather dog collars that last for a long time, are seen as having lasting value.
However, be sure that your customers actually receive the benefits they are promised. If you exaggerate or stretch the truth, it will come back to haunt you. The more your products really deliver, the more money you will make.
Beware of fad products. These products may be valuable and create value now, but will be useless in the future. Only a few years ago, many people were stuck with huge inventories of Beanie Babies when the fad ended. You know that fads will end. Unless you can afford the losses associated with collecting, it's best to avoid fad products.
Great products have universal appeal
While many products deliver great value, not all have universal appeal. Be careful to choose or create products that can be marketed to a wide audience. It makes them easier to sell. For example, dog grooming and boarding services are limited to your geographical region; however, if you write a book on dog grooming or running a boarding service, your market becomes much bigger. With the advent of the Internet, it is now possible (but not necessarily easy) to reach audiences world wide.
Universally appealing products usually have lots of competition. Don't be discouraged! With effective marketing, you can also reach millions of potential buyers. You need only a small portion of market share to operate a profitable business.
It has often been reported that after the California gold rush ended, the people who made and kept their money were the ones who sold the tools (picks, shovels and mules) that the miners used.
A classic example of this is Levi's jeans, which are still being sold today. Levi's has provided jobs and amassed wealth for over a hundred years. How many "get rich quick" miners were still rich only 10 years later?
If you choose to sell products created by someone else, pay careful attention to who that someone is. A product created by a well-known and respected company is easier to sell.
Great products create repeat sales
Studies show that it costs 10 times more to sell a customer a product the first time than the second time. It makes sense when you consider all the dollars you pour into advertising, product development, marketing and so forth.
While products like vitamins, dog food/treats or veterinary services may spring to mind as great products and services that create secondary sales, the truth is that almost any product can be used to generate back-end profits.
One way to do this is to sell a series of products that build on each other, or complement each other. The key is to think through customer needs and offer it to them before they go shopping for it. If your timing is good, and you offer real value, you will be pleasantly surprised at how well this strategy works.
There are millions of products out there. How do you choose which ones to sell now? To succeed in the long-term, you must know yourself and promote something you honestly believe in. The best situation is when you to use the product yourself. This also makes you familiar enough with the product to be able to advise and assist your customers.
The "perfect" product/service brings true and perceived value to the customer, has broad appeal, and generates direct repeat sales and helps sell your other products and services. By choosing the right products, you can build a profitable business that will last a lifetime.
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