Why is selling so hard for women entrepreneurs?Mar 07, 2022
Out of the top 100 'sales training' books on Amazon, a mighty three are written by women.
Traditionally, sales is a male-dominated profession, but it’s vital for women in business to become comfortable with the process. One of the biggest barriers to women in business is a fear of selling – whether this is admitted or not. It’s a huge stumbling block when it comes to business growth, and “I hate to sell” is constantly repeated across the Female Fusion Network. It’s ironic, because we believe that being a woman is a selling superpower. It really is time to stop watching YouTube videos and reading sales books that are all written and delivered by men.
We, as women, do not sell the same way.
As women, we have untapped skills that can turn that conversation into a sale. Women often make better salespeople than men by utilising core, softer skills – namely listening. We can better connect with customers by listening to their needs and requirements, which means that the potential customer gains confidence in us more quickly. A 2017 study showed that in a selling situation, women spend about 80 percent of the time listening, and 20 percent of the time asking questions. For men, the figures are significantly lower.
Women sell differently, but it’s no wonder why so many women feel that they can’t sell or really feel out of their comfort zone. Sales books and videos often over-complicate the process – usually so they can sell more how-to-sell books.
Customers are now looking for authenticity. In a competitive marketplace with lots of choice, buyers want to know, like and trust the person they’re buying from. They don’t want a hard sell. In fact, they don’t even want to feel like someone is selling them something. They want to know the value and the results the product or service will bring. This authenticity is something that we as women do well.
As a potential buyer, it’s easy to feel like men are selling to you as they’re talking over you (we’ve all heard the term mansplaining), or they’re not really listening to what you need or want. This is often frustrating. Selling is serving. It’s helping the customer identify a problem and coming up with a solution.
With women, we’re all about the relationships – and we nurture them. Depending on the industry, roughly two-thirds of new business comes from existing customers, while one-third will come from new customers. By continuously serving and supporting customers by nurturing relationships, these customers can be counted on to close a sale.
A business without sales is a hobby, and often an expensive one too. Nobody can take an offer you haven’t made them. By recognising the need to ‘sell more often’ first, then recognising that your feminine intuition and softer skills will work in your favour when it comes to nurturing and listening to your clients and customers, we can beat the fear of ‘selling’ and dispel any reservations we have about closing a deal and making more money.
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