The question today comes from an agent who’s getting objections to cash discounting. She wants to know how to overcome these objections. Before answering that specific question, I’d like to help you avoid the objections altogether!
The only objection to cash discounting is the merchant’s concern about customer reactions. There’s no other possible reason not to sign up. Your mindset is very important. Realize you don’t have to win any particular argument with the prospect to get the sale.
Be sure you present options to merchants and validate their opinion. Don’t create any divisive conversation.
“Susan, obviously, that’s the objection all my clients had at the beginning. It’s a very valid objection. Let me give you some context. Our company has seen this play out thousands of times. Therefore, I have the numbers I can share with you.
I can tell you that only about 1 out of every 20 business owners who implement this program find it’s not the right fit. Their customers don’t like it. That’s only about 5% of the time. It’s important for you to know, Susan, you could be that 5%. We SHOULD talk about that.
Obviously, I don’t think you’re going to be that 5%; it’s my job to think you’re not. But, let’s assume you are. Here’s what will happen.
I’ll prepare two written proposals for you.
· The first one is simple – I’ll wipe out your credit card processing costs for the most part.
· The second proposal will be traditional processing. Assuming cash discounting doesn’t work when you try it, please understand I’m not going to lock you in a box or anything. I’ll make it very easy for you to return to traditional processing if cash discounting isn’t a good fit. And, I’m still going to save you money. In fact, I’ll give it to you almost at cost, just as a thank you for trying the program.
Thus, there are two basic approaches for you on this, Susan:
1. Would you be comfortable to try cash discounting in hopes you are the 95% whose customers are fine and who save a fortune, knowing you can switch to traditional processing if you need to?
2. Or would you feel more comfortable switching to traditional processing with someone like me, knowing that as cash discounting becomes more popular in the community, you could always flip a switch to do cash discounting and eliminate your fees?
Which of those two approaches are you more comfortable with?”
As an agent, what’s your honest opinion of an approach like that? Are there some other objections you might get from prospects?
AGENT: About 70-80% of the time, prospects will then say they want to stick with what they already know.
JAMES: If you have presented cash discounting this way, as a trial period, there’s only one lever left to pull.
The logic has been presented. So, the only reason merchants wouldn’t agree at this point is they don’t believe you. If they did, they’d move forward. However, that’s sales! Our job is to convince people.
I suggest a three-step close. Try hard to close them with a personal pitch.
“Susan, I get where you’re coming from, and I totally respect that. You’ve been in business a long time; I respect your experience and your savvy.
However, here’s the thing – not only do I really want your business, I love getting phone calls and emails from my clients 2-3-4 months after implementing this program, assuring me they got maybe four complaints over the course of three months and already saved $12,000! I live for that; that’s what I personally do.
I’m giving you my word – my personal guarantee – if this program negatively impacts your business in any way and you feel like it’s not a good cost exchange (keep in mind, there’s a 95% chance that’s not going to happen), I will drive out here the same day if needed. I’ll swap that terminal, turn off that feature, or whatever I need to do to get you back to traditional processing. I’ll take care of it, so there won’t be any lasting issues. If I’m personally willing to give you my guarantee and knowing you have a 95% chance of saving all that money, are you at least willing to give it a chance? What do you say?”
With that strategy, you make the merchant say “no” to you. Susan already said “no” to cash discounting; now make her say “no” to you. You’ll find merchants will then either turn you down cold or give you the real objection.
A merchant might say, “It’s not you. But I make these decisions with my partner. He/she wouldn’t feel comfortable.”
Those of us in our industry sometimes forget that cash discounting is a much larger decision than switching to traditional processing. Switching processors isn’t too unusual. A partner might not desire special consideration for that.
But changing the way a business does their pricing strategy is bigger; there might be other decision makers involved in that. As credit card processors, we easily gloss over immediately informing a partner of switching processors! However, telling a partner later that a decision was made to shift the whole strategy and start charging customers more money as a service fee or non-cash adjustment isn’t going to fly. Put that into perspective.
In summary, if you can’t avoid the objections, make merchants say “no” to you, not just cash discounting.