One of the main challenges manufacturers and retailers have is establishing credibility with the customer. According to research the consumer is more likely to trust information received via their own research, on the web or from friends that from a salesperson. Some industries have an easier job of getting the credibility message across than other, for example a vet is likely to be more trusted and credible than a second hand car salesperson in the consumers mind.
Whatever industry you are in the important rules of the game is to get the credibility message across quickly as the consumer has not got the time to wait and do the research on you to provide them with the confidence they need.
What are customers looking for in the credibility stakes?
This is my list of essential attributes for the credible salesperson:
1. First impression based on what you wear
I have heard salespeople say that it does not matter what they wear when dealing with the customer as it is their knowledge that is important. We live in a society that, for better or worse, judges people on first impressions. What you wear does matter. There is a dress code for nearly every job. Some of those codes may be quite strict with little leeway, others may be loser, but a code still exists. You cannot get away with wearing Bermuda shorts if you are a bank manager, outside of Bermuda. The consumer will judge you on what you wear; you have to play by their rules, not yours.
2. Watch the body language
The consumer will believe you if they feel you are confident about what you are talking about. That means you need to watch your body language. Use positive, not negative, body language when dealing with the client. This means that facial expressions are as important as having an open body stance. We pick up the little clues at a sub conscious level when talking to each other. You need to show you are confident in what you are saying. How you say it is as important as what you are saying.