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How salespeople trick you into buying things

There was a time back in the day when I was a salesperson. I know, you can’t believe it when you look at my innocent face *blinks a few times* but it is true. I sold furniture in an unnamed store, which means I know all the tips and tricks used when someone tries to sell you an expensive item. And because I am a super nice person, I am going to share these with you so that you will either be aware of it, or not fall for them next time. And because sometimes I didn’t like pushing people into buying stuff when they weren’t sure. And also, the store I worked in was full of snobs who thought they were God’s given gift to humanity. But that is just my frustration with them. Anyway, here we go.

1. The salesperson who tries to sell you stuff never randomly walks by.

Unless you speak to a salesperson, someone will be sent to you. So if you are a young couple, you will either be helped by a young man or a slightly older woman/man. Why? Because if you send a young woman to a couple, there is a risk the girl will get jealous and refuses to buy anything (this is true). But if it is a young woman alone, someone like me would get sent to her because it creates a bonding experience as we are essentially on the same level. An elderly couple will most likely be helped by an elderly salesperson, because they want ‘experience.’ A young guy will be helped by a young guy if they want to accomplish the same thing as the girl bonding experience or by a (young) woman to slightly flirt you into buying things. This is mostly with large stores that do have a lot of people running around

2. Nobody is interested in hearing your biography

But I would listen kindly anyway. People would tell me about their families, would show me their current furniture, they would share personal stories and I listened. Because the more you tell and the more I listen, the more you start liking me because finally somebody listens to you. And the more you like me, the easier it is for me to seduce you to buy that expensive couch you do not need. My fastest sale was in 2 minutes, when I only smiled at somebody and that was enough to convince him. It depends. Sometimes I would run around for 3 hours, trying to sell you stuff.

3. When a salesperson says they are low in stock when you are hesitating to buy something, they are lying.

You have been looking at this product for ages. The person who helps you is dreaming about getting a bonus today. You just need to be pushed over the edge a little bit before you will buy something. Then the salesperson says: “This is a very popular product. Let me check the stock.” He will dash off, probably discuss with the manager, come back and tell you “We only have two of these left and we have 6 stores. It could be gone if you wait too long.” And even though you are not sure, you buy it anyway because you do not want to regret missing out if you would go home and decide to buy it later.

4. If you are with two, they always side with the dominant person

With cars, this is usually the man. In the furniture business, it is usually the woman. We observe the situation and see who has most to say about all this. And that is easy. Most men will be all “I don’t really care” and women find this frustrating because they want their men to approve. But if the salesperson sides with them, it is also good because then their good choice is validated by the salesperson and thus she knows that she made the right decision. Psychology right there.

5. They will always try to sell you more things you don’t really need.

Such as accessoiries, insurances, maintenance kits. These are the things they make most money on. Don’t fall for it.

6. They hate you if you ask for a discount, but do it anyway.

Especially in the furniture business there is a lot of money to be saved by being bold enough to ask for it. And who doesn’t love saving money?

7. They will adapt themselves to you.

Are you a dominant person? They will try to make you feel like you have stuff to say while they manipulate you to buy the things they want you to buy. Are you submissive? They will take control with a more direct and aggressive approach. They know what they are doing, so unless you are aware of it, you will not win this game.

 

These are a few basic things I’ve learned in my days as a salesperson. Basically, salespeople don’t really like you but are trained to pretend they do and in a very convincing manner. But now you are prepared to go out into the real world and show those salespeople that you are boss. Remember, you are the money and they want the money. Make them work.

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Ingrid is the twenty-something owner of The Sassologist, who loves everything that has to do with pop culture. While she is one of many who is in the process of writing a novel, she is also currently in denial over not being a witch. Her Hogwarts letter has yet to arrive. In the meantime she writes about pop culture and dreams about unicorns.

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