Is A Purchaser Your Best Sales Contact?

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Is a purchaser your best sales contact? To answer that question, you have to look at the role a purchaser plays in the sales process.

Is a purchaser your best sales contact? - Sales Tips from B2B Sales Connections

A purchaser’s role is to execute a purchase for a product based on another department’s purchasing criteria.  Although you may think that the purchaser is your best sales contact because they issue the purchase order paperwork, they really aren’t. Your best sales contact is actually the person in that other department.

For example, let’s say you are selling group dental insurance. You may receive a purchase order for the plan from the purchasing department. In reality though, it was actually the Human Resources manager who decided the best dental plan to buy. 

Please don’t misunderstand me, a purchaser is a still a good sales contact to have. They are excellent contacts if you ever have follow up on your sales paperwork through the process. They are also great contacts if you sell a product that is reordered on a regular basis.

Who is Your Best Sales Contact within an Organization?

However, unless you actually sell purchase order forms, the name of a purchaser is not your ultimate sales contact. The reason is they rarely have the authority to make the final buying decisions, or to even create the buying criteria in the first place. Those decisions are normally made by someone higher in the organization. Specifically, it is the person who has budget accountabilities for the expense of the use of your product that makes those decisions.

In fact, in some cases a purchaser cannot even sign the sales contact as they do not have signing authority in the company. Again, that is normally someone higher up.

Taking this a step further, a purchaser is often tasked with negotiating and getting the cheapest price for what the other department needs. But do your prospects really want the cheapest price, or the cheapest price for what they want?  Think about it. Have you ever heard, “Hire me the cheapest brain surgeon you can find!”?

Although the purchaser looks mostly at the price, the person who has the true buying authority doesn’t want the cheapest price. They want the best value.

Check out my ebook, Action Plan for Sales Success, where I discuss in detail how to determine who is your best sales contact. This includes not only who you should ask to speak to when you are prospecting, but also the best way to ask so that you actually get the right answer. 

After all, if you are not talking to the right person, you simply won’t make the sale!

Aim Higher!

Susan A. EnnsB2B Sales Coach and Author
Schedule a free sales coaching strategy session with Susan here.

“… what I can tell anyone, is simply this – If you want to learn and understand sales, talk to Susan.”

Do you have a question about sales? You’re not alone.  Most salespeople have questions like this on how they can sell more. For the right answers, check out my book, Ask the Sales Coach-Practical Answers to the Questions Sales People Ask Most.

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