Dealing With ‘I Want To Shop Around’

Written by Sean McPheat | Linkedin thumb

These words can cause you to deflate and give up immediately, because it means in your mind that nothing you can do can influence the shopper. No matter what you say, they’ll go somewhere else anyway, so what’s the point?

Why do prospective customers say this? The answer’s pretty simple. They haven’t yet been convinced that your solution deals with their needs at a sufficient level for them to move from their problem to a solution.

Let’s say it’s a mobile (cell) phone they’re looking for. The first thing to do is to get full rapport with the customer. You can say something like:

“That’s fine. I’m sure you want to know that you’re getting the best phone on the best tariff. Is that correct?”

shopping bags in handHere, you’re on the same wavelength, proving that you want the best for them, and, naturally, the customer’s going to agree with you.

So you can ask, ‘Just out of curiosity, what kind of things will you be checking out?

This softly-softly approach makes the customer feel safe and secure in letting you know what their decision-making criteria is based on.

After they have told you their answers, these are the areas that you can concentrate on helping them decide you have the answers to.

Let’s say they want to know if the phone (or whatever it is) they are looking at with you is the best choice for them. Well, you can reiterate the discussion you had with them and identify again how this item will do exactly what they are looking for. Also, you can suggest how you can save them loads of time so they can start using their phone today, maybe in the next few minutes, and so enjoy using it rather than having the uncertainty of still ‘not-knowing’.

Never underestimate the negativity of ‘not-knowing’. In humans it can drive a fear response, building up continual worries and stress. When we ‘don’t-know’ something, the impact can be quite debilitating and can become debilitating for some, as they then apply that feeling to other areas about themselves.

As a salesperson, you can dispel those feelings by giving them confidence in their decision-making capabilities.

You could say, ‘We understand how many people feel like this (giving them security that they aren’t wrong in having that reaction). That’s why we produced this document to save you time and encourage you to make the right decision now.’

Those last five words act as a sort of ‘embedded command’ where the subconscious takes in the message that ‘now would be the best time to make the decision’.

By supplying the competitive offers, you save the customer time, effort and probably money by doing the shopping around for them.

It also keeps you on your toes, because if the competition have something better than you (in this case, a better tariff or more minutes for the same price) you can either see what you can do to match it or discuss the type of phone they have from you and how it’s better than the competitor’s.

The expression ‘I want to shop around’ is a good chance for you to show your skills as a genuine sales consultant. You’re both analysing the needs of the individual and finding out if, genuinely, you have the best offer for the customer.

If not, then you have learned what you need to change to become more attractive to the customer. If you are, you’ve proved to yourself and future customers why they have made the right choice to go with you.

Happy Selling!


Sean McPheat

Sean McPheat
Managing Director

MTD Sales Training |

450 sales questions free report

Originally published: 29 October, 2013

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