The Big 5: Cost

Most businesses don’t want to talk about money. You know who does? Your customers and recruits. That’s why you need to talk about costs, no matter what your business does.

Web marketing expert Marcus Sheridan will teach you how to look at cost from a customer’s perspective—and why that’s a good thing for your business.

How customers think about cost

When you’re on a website looking for price information and you can’t find it, you get frustrated. Why? Because the company is making it hard to make a decision. You don’t know if you really want to buy the product until you know how much it will cost.

Customers want to know how much your product or service costs, too. And they want to know right away. Studies show that people only look for price information on a website for 10 seconds before they leave. 

Where do they go? To search with your competitors until they find what they’re looking for. Whoever gives them pricing info first usually gets their business.

Recruits think the same way. They want to know what the job pays, and if you don’t tell them upfront, they’ll pass you over to work for someone who answered their question. 

Why don’t companies talk about cost?  

If customers and recruits are ditching businesses that don’t talk about cost, why aren’t more companies addressing this subject? 

Most companies make three excuses when it comes to talking about cost.

#1: Every job is different 

The construction and heavy civil industries often use the hard-bid business model, because you offer custom products and services. Since the price depends on the project, you can’t just tell people what things will cost. So why talk about cost at all?  

The answer is trust. You still need your customers to trust you—even if you run a bid-based company. When you don’t talk to your customers about cost, you lose their trust and probably their business.

Even if you can’t give a specific number, you can explain the factors that raise or lower the cost. You can help customers understand why some companies are more or less expensive than you. You can even give them a few price ranges for common projects you do. 

When you tell the customer what impacts the cost, they learn more about what you do and how it’s different from your competitors. That earns their trust and makes them more likely to work with you.

#2: Our price might scare them away

This fear feels legit, especially if the work you do is expensive. But once you understand how customers think, you realize price doesn’t scare people away. Not talking about price scares them away. 

Avoiding the topic of cost plants a seed of doubt, and people don’t make decisions when they’re in doubt. However, they do make decisions when you teach them about cost and help them feel confident in what they’re getting.

#3: We don’t want our competitors to see our price

Newsflash: You know about what your competitors charge, and they know about what you charge. You’re in the same industry, and even if you haven’t seen the exact number, everyone has at least an idea of what everyone else needs to make a profit. 

Don’t pretend your price is a big secret you’re hiding from the competition. Besides, they’re not the ones you care about. You care about your customers, and your customers want to know the cost. 

What happens when you talk about cost

Marcus and his team at River Pools and Spas published the world’s first piece of content about how much fiberglass pools cost. Since pool prices vary, their article listed options and accessories that drive up the cost. It also talked about why some companies are expensive or cheap, and it gave customers different price ranges based on popular types of pools. 

Within 48 hours, that article ranked number one for almost all the online search terms about pool cost. Since then, it’s generated over $30 million in revenue. And that’s all because it answered a simple question about cost. 

Now, that’s just one example, but the point still stands. Talking about cost can have huge benefits for your business.

Why you should talk about cost 

When customers don’t know the difference between you and the competition, they’ll just go with the lowest bid. But when you teach them about costs and how you add value that the competition doesn’t add, they’ll pick you—even if your price is higher. 

The bottom line: You’ve got to teach customers about the cost to get more business. 

The same goes for recruits. When you teach them about industry salaries, factors that affect their salary, and the salary range you pay, they’ll start to trust you. And they’ll be more likely to want to work for you.

How to talk about cost

Now you know why talking about cost and salary is important. But how do you do it without being weird? Marcus teaches you the ropes in his next video.

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