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Overcoming Price Objections Part 1: Avoiding Objections Before It Happens

By Susan Hall

Do you often get price objections when you present your proposals? Do you hear, “That was more than we were expecting…“? Susan Hall leads a discussion on strategies you can take to prevent the dreaded price objection conversation with Tim Deuitch and Joane Ramsey.

Susan Hall: 00:01 I think every salesperson has had that experience where the client has said, "You know what, your cost is just too high, your price is too much," and you get that "No" feeling in the pit of your stomach. Unfortunately, we find that many of our clients deal with price objections after they've made a proposal. Then they get caught into this kind of vicious circle of addressing objections and handling, and kind of almost defending and back pedaling. When there is a much more effective way to avoid objections, and that's by what you do before you even present your solution to the client. So what you're doing up front can set you up so that you can really minimize those price objection opportunities. I know you've got some, some thoughts on that Tim.

Tim Deuitch: 00:58 Well, I do. I think so much of this avoidance of objections, it begins at the beginning. When we present our company, our solutions, our value, our company as a whole, when we present it, it's important to help them understand who you are as a company and the type of value you bring. Sometimes it gets rooted in the ability to simply say, "In terms of the question of price, we're rarely the lowest price option that you'd have," and to be upfront with that, to see how they react to that, and help understand. We might be, but if we lead with value, we provide comprehensive solutions that have lasting value, and help you meet your objectives. I think it helps set the tone. It must help set the tone going forward.

Susan Hall: 01:49 What needs to happen though, is you better be sure you know whats of the value to the customer?

Tim Deuitch: 01:53 Absolutely.

Joane Ramsey: 01:54 I think from that perspective, it's really critical that your salespeople understand how to ask questions, and really conduct a proper understanding of what the client values and what is it that they are willing to pay for. What will make that initiative really differentiate not only your company, but the client's company in the marketplace. So, really helping salespeople understand that can be challenging, because they are of the mindset at times that, "No matter what I do, I will run into a price objection." We all know that is not the case if we do a really good job in understanding the client's needs and what they are willing to pay for upfront.

Susan Hall: 02:40 And doing so, in a way that helps you differentiate from your competitors, because if they see you as the same as your competitor, then you're locked right back into that price game. So by understanding what's critical to them and why, definitely can set you apart. I think another tip would be, it amazes me how many salespeople are hesitant or reluctant to ask about budget. That's part of the discovery process, is to understand what's important. Now, you may have a customer that might want to play you against a competitor or they're looking for the low ball price. Maybe they're not the best customer for you. It's important to know that all up front. Ask the question and one way to ask it is, "So, can you tell me what kind of budget do you have allocated for this?

Tim Deuitch: 03:32 Right. Being frontal enough to understand what the parameters are, it's certainly important to understand what the possibilities are at this company or this prospect. But, it's also important to understand that if their budget is at X level and what you believe they need to do in order to meet their objectives is at a higher level, I think that allows for that frank conversation right there. And also, if it's not going to work, it certainly saves time on your behalf.

Joane Ramsey: 04:04 Isn't that the truth sometimes, that's another pitfall. We avoid the conversation and then we find ourselves like, "Now what do we do from here?" Instead of having the conversation and making that decision early on.

Tim Deuitch: 04:17 Yes.

Susan Hall: 04:18 We've talked about the most important way to deal with objections, is to deal with them before they even come up, and that's by doing your homework upfront and avoiding them as much as possible by having a really clear understanding of what's of value to the customer. Communicating that value in a way that makes sense to them and is where they can see the benefit that they're getting over your competitor. Also, just asking some really direct, respectful questions around their budget parameters and what they expect to pay.

Joane Ramsey: 04:49 Yes. I think those are great tips.

Published: July 30, 2019

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Susan Hall

Vice President - Business Development & Performance Improvement

Susan brings over 20 years of experience working with global markets and organizations, helping them navigate through tough economic challenges while maintaining their margins. Since joining SEG in 1995, she has had the privilege of working with organizations that truly value the development of their employees and recognize the impact their people have on their bottom line results. Susan graduated from Pennsylvania State University with a double major in business management and speech communication. She has also completed course work toward her master's degree at Johns Hopkins University.

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