5 Types of Customer Objections — and What's Behind Them

Tom Reilly

August 2, 2006

1 Min Read
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Customer objections fit nicely into five categories: price, cost, value, games and process.

Price objections are short-term objections, as the buyer may not have the budget or money to afford your alternative. This includes sticker shock, expectations of a lower price, and buyers that just don't want to pay what you are charging. Their attitude does not make your price too high.

Cost objections are long-term objections, because the root cause of the objection may be a broader cost-cutting effort by the buyer. Your price is part of an austerity program or efficiency initiative.

Value objections refer to the buyer who does not see the equity between your price and your package or the difference between you and the competition.

Games are the gambits, ploys, and maneuvers that buyers use to drive prices down. These include knee-jerk reactions to any price. Their attitude is that there is always a lower price if they hang in there long enough. Sales people that play the game reinforce this behavior.

Process objections include company policies or procedural guidelines that mandate competitive bids. In most cases, the buyer must follow the prescribed buying process that may include national contracts or formal bids.

There is no one way to respond to all objections. The first step is to clarify what the customer is really saying. Then, you can choose your response strategy.

Tom Reilly is a sales consultant and author of the book “Crush Price Objections” (Motivation Press).

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