Did you know 87% of sales opportunities have medium to high amounts of customer indecision? And when you add in economic uncertainty, inflation, supply chain challenges, technology disruption, competitive pressure and the fear of a downturn, you wind up with the overwhelmed customer that extends a decision cycle and so often decides that “no decision” is the best near-term course of action.
Value is the antidote to this indecision and more intense competition. Stacking value is when you break an offer into components, assign a value to each component, and then present a total that you use to compare against your price and the competition.
When I stack value, I build around our intellectual property and work product in a way that resonates with the client, differentiates us from the competition and elevates a sense of urgency that compels the customer to make a decision.
What I don’t do is default to offering a discount. That’s because customers don’t buy on price. They default to price in the absence of value. I’d much rather stack value to help a customer arrive at the right decision.
Here are a few ways to think about how you’ll stack value:
The first “no” is a chance to add value
Resistance is an opportunity for sellers to quantify decision reluctance and help a customer move beyond it. Part of my value-based communication is around demonstrating proof of concept. I’m into evidence and leveraging relevant case studies and stories that create a sense of urgency and help the client begin to connect to outcomes they deeply desire. Did I help the client connect to a better future in partnership with me?
Show how you’ll deliver value beyond the engagement
As you make the customer the hero of their journey, show how buying from you is only the beginning of their transformation. If you’re offering a strategy engagement, show them how they’re not just paying for a transaction but rather investing in the ongoing impact of your work and expertise. Have I committed to the customer beyond the transaction in a way that helps them feel more confidence about making the decision?
Evolve your value stack
What else could you build around your core offer that customers covet but the competition isn’t delivering? This is an exercise worth doing now (and continuing to build on as you progress). For us, that could mean improving our 26-point service level agreement or elevating the process for onboarding a client and delivering more value beyond the initial scope of work. What is core is often hard to differentiate in a competitive selling situation. What you build around the core offer is one of the fastest and most compelling ways to evolve your value stack.
Once you understand your value, figure out how to package those traits and convert clients from a “no decision” to a “hell yes” because it becomes very clear your offer is one a customer cannot live without.