How do you get a rate increase
Hard to imagine a client jumping for joy at the announcement of an increase in your price. But with a little diplomacy and refining your approach, you will make less bitter potion.
Soaring commodity prices, soaring electricity prices, burgeoning fringe benefits . The reasons to revise its rates on the rise, especially where profitability is crumbling, do not miss. But whatever the motives and circumstances, imposing a price increase to a customer can not be improvised, especially if it is important. You’ll have to prepare the ground, but also sharpen your arguments to answer the objections that will be advanced to you at the official announcement. Observing a few simple rules will help you get the pill smoothly, even with the most customers reassembled.
Send signals to avoid surprise
The worst tactics is to deliver the bad news suddenly and unexpectedly. Not to steer your customer, you must instead prepare for this possibility several weeks in advance, preferably at an informal meeting or during a discussion without issue. Avoid show you devastated, but does not minimize the project: “An increase in our rates is in the pipes, as you are one of our loyal customers, I prefer to tell you..” As for the figures, remain vague as possible: your partner will thus be tempted to imagine the worst and show him relieved when you announce the actual amount of the increase. He expected 15%? In reality, it will be “only” 5%. Your will increase much more easily.
Choose the right timing for the official announcement
Nothing prevents you to call your best customers to prevent them before they receive the official letter informing them of your new fee schedule. In this letter, be as simple and concise as possible. No need to lie down or try to justify yourself, you will have the time to explain in an interview face to face. The key at this stage is to avoid timing error. Just a few years an industrial food was trapped by introducing price increases to a supermarket chain just when it published record profits. The central purchasing obviously jumped at the chance to return the supplier in its goals. Similarly, if your client has something to reproach you, defer the announcement: wait for the failures of your machines or your delivery delays are resolved! The best solution, if you are decision maker, of course, is proceeding gradually, spreading the increase over time. Your customer support more easily regular and low rise – once a year, for example, on the occasion of an order or a contract renewal – a supposed whammy offset several years of rate stability.
Show yourself firm and without complex
Many commercial will agonize at the thought of approaching the subject. The most worried are also not necessarily those who practice the most expensive price. This fear and the stress it generates lies right from the start at a disadvantage. In sales talk, your partner will notice and interpret it as an admission of weakness. To display a maximum of serenity, remember that price is rarely the first purchase criterion. All surveys of professional buyers show that the quality (in the broadest sense: after-sales period, support .) at least as important in their choices, especially when it comes to products with high added value and services complicated.
Make it clear to your partner from the beginning of the interview that the new price is final and not negotiable. Be loath is from beaten and risk losing all credibility. By asserting your authority, you will inspire respect and it will then be easier to defend your point of view. What is important to your customer, is that the new tariff is compatible with its budget and there is no product cheaper elsewhere or equivalent service. An increase does not make you a “thief” in which your client would be the victim. It is a conscious decision, reflecting the evolution of your offer and your business environment. You too have to get results, the objectives and jobs to defend.
Argue with objective elements
Whatever the customer profile, if your price increases are due to the increases that you suffer from your own providers, specify it clearly. You have every opportunity to convince by showing that you do that integrating additional loads – and thus not you increase your rates to earn more, but not to lose. An industrial baker, for example, will emphasize that the rise in wheat prices (which rose sharply in one year) increased all its supply costs.
It is also an opportunity to promote your offer by emphasizing its strengths. Take the opportunity to highlight additions or progress, however small, which have recently received your products or services. Finally, take care of the vocabulary used. Avoid the term “expense” or “cost” “, which can cause negative reactions and unnecessarily increase customer resistance. Instead, talk about “investment” or “value.” Do not say: “With this new tariff, your hardware now costs 1,000 euros.” But rather: “It will invest 1000 euros to benefit from all the advantages of the material that I offer.”
Provide facilities in case of blockage
Despite your best efforts, your decision is struggling to pass? If you feel very refractory customer, ready to let you down, show yourself flexible
And conciliatory. Suggest, for example, to delay the entry into force of the future price or, if it is a service, apply only to the part of the contract remaining to be processed. also planning a return to the final stage of negotiation: an additional service, deadlines shorter delivery . A small concession released at the right time will help you coax the toughest. Your customer found cheaper elsewhere? Do not panic. Ask him about the competitor’s offer, and show the benefits of your solution. Those who are not perceived necessarily immediately and justify the price difference: a stronger product in duration, quality manufacturing guarantees a rate close to zero outages, more competent staff, additional services ( exchange in case of dissatisfaction, advice hotline available around the hour twenty-four).
If the client remains recalcitrant, offer a cheaper alternative, but less advantageous. This will put it to the wall: either accept the increase or it reviews its needs downward. This tactic can test his “desire”. If he is really interested, he will bend to your new tariff. Otherwise, opt for your low cost offers. You will certainly edging on your sales . but kept a customer.