Customer Service Training - Features, Advantage, and Benefits
Before we refer back to the Probing triangle understand that we ask effect questions in order to identify explicit needs. If we ask only situation/problem questions and attempt to sell at this point we are selling against implied needs. In essence, there is an implication that the customer may buy or may wish to use us but it is not at this moment explicit. This is the reason that we break down presenting the product into the areas of feature, advantages and benefits.
It is often quite a major achievement to reach the stage where you have ‘earned’ the opportunity to present a solution to your customer. Furthermore, if you have isolated the true needs of the customer, and you have a product that fits the bill, then presenting the solution should be quite straightforward.
Features advantage and benefits
You now need to present your solution in the most logical and objective manner possible. You should do this via FAB or Features, Advantage, and Benefits.
As we said earlier, people buy because they have needs. FAB is about relating your products and services specifically to those needs. Benefits are the most powerful statement used to describe products or services. Let’s look at our definitions of FAB.
Features describe the distinctive attributes of a product or services.
Advantages describe how features can be used to a customer’s advantage.
Benefits describe how features and advantages address a customer’s explicit needs.
It is important to appreciate that for something to be a benefit the customer must have said that a particular feature or advantage will be of use. Many salespeople make the mistake of ‘telling’ the customer what the benefits are, and in doing so miss a significant opportunity to get commitment.
Remember, your customer will not buy a product or service based simply on the features that it has. They will only buy if they are happy with what the product or service will do for their business. Therefore it is essential that you explain how your product/service will meet their expressed needs. Do not assume the customer understands what the benefits will be.
Let’s imagine you are selling calculators. Your probing has revealed that hand calculated invoices have led to errors, which in turn has meant a delay in payment while these queries are rectified.
A feature advantage, benefits statement could be:
“The equipment has the facilities to do all the calculations you require”
“The advantage is that the calculations will then be completely error free”
“The benefits will be quicker payment of your invoices because the amounts will not be queried, hence there will be a saving in time and an improvement in your in your cash flow”
Then gain commitment from your customer that is happy with the benefits your product/services offer.
And now ‘the close’ - with total confidence because the product has met the customer’s needs.
- Prosell offers a program that combines sales training and sales coaching. It is based on recognised research, which tells us that training alone has limited impact and that when supported by skilful coaching, has 74% more chance of being implemented.
- Prosell has resources to deliver these programs across Australia, covering Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide and Canberra.