How Dealers Sell Swim Spas
When you walk into a pool and spa store, most good sales people will follow a similar process to sell you a swim spa. Knowing the process can help you get the most from your purchase.
- The Introduction - when a salesperson sees you in their store looking at spas or swim spas, the will casually walk over to you. Their first mission is to develop a relationship. They might just ask "Can I help you," but the really good ones will start by developing a rapport. They will talk to you about anything else but the sale and try to establish a common connection. For example, if you are wearing a sport team shirt, they will ask you about recent games, if they can tell you have kids, they will talk about their kids.
- The Needs Assessment - The sales person will then move on to ask you what you are looking for and why. The really good ones will listen keenly to your answers, then spin their product to meet your needs. They will also ask what other competitors you are looking at, and present their product as having advantages over these competitors.
- Qualification - All through the conversation, they will be sizing you up. Does this person look like they can afford a swim spa? Where are they in the purchase process? Are they just investigating or are they ready to buy.
- Credibility - At some point in their discussion, they probably will try to demonstrate the high standards of their product and their retail store. Many stores have "walls of credibility." These are walls with certificates showing awards and status from vendors and so called 'independent third parties.'
- Barrier Removal - A good sales person will try to close the sale, or at least get a level commitment or engagement before you leave the store. The commitment could be as small as a date to return or a refundable deposit to lock in a sale price. Both of these are psychological hooks to keep the sale moving forward. And a good sales person will have answers to counter any barrier to close that you can think of. For example, if you say: "I want to wait until Spring" they might say "Our best sale of the year is right now, if you buy today I might be able to get you an extra $X off the price."
Now let me be clear here, there is nothing unethical with this general process. It is the same basic process used in many industries. If applied with consideration given to customers, it is a great way to run a business and get the right product to your customers.
However, knowing the process, there are a few thing you should do. 1) Tell the salesperson honestly what your are looking for and why. 2) Treat their statements of credibility with skepticism, check out the business with the Better Business Bureau 3) Be prepared for them to try to close your sale, this is normal. But, don't let yourself be rushed into a purchase.
And most importantly, take a test swim in a number of different brands. You cannot tell the quality of the current by looking at it or putting your hand in the water. A lot of people skip this step and are disappointed when the get the swim spa home. You wouldn't buy a car without taking it out for a test drive -- why would you invest so much money in swim spa without trying it out? If your salesperson discourages your test swim, I would be very skeptical.