Closing the Sale With the Chinese Consumer

Planning ahead increases the chance of completing the sale.

Chinese consumers want to buy products they recognize, learn and be educated on the heritage of brands and know that stores carry their size.

That’s a few of the ways brands can complete the sale when selling to a Chinese consumer, according to a presentation Thursday morning by China Luxury Advisors cofounder Sage Brennan, at the AW Asia Organization in Manhattan.

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Certain time periods throughout the year are prime for gift-giving, such as National Day and the Lunar Festival.

Retailers and brands can increase their chances of making the sale by preparing ahead of time. Some ways to close the transaction include having displays that highlight top gift-giving products; having a greeter at the door, and including a Mandarin-speaking sales associate.

Brennan also noted that Chinese consumers typically don’t trust the sales staff because of poor experiences in China, and when traveling they typically expect discounts. Companies can make the sale more enticing by including a small gift with the purchase of a featured item. They can also provide gift cards for purchases beyond a certain amount in lieu of discounts. Other options include refunding the state sales tax where one is collected or, in high-end purchases, bringing special items to a VIP’s hotel room.

Brands can also plan ahead of time responses to certain questions. A consumer asking for one discount can be countered with a different discount option. Or a sales associate can change the dynamics by stating the company doesn’t provide the requested discount, but would the consumer be interested in a deal on a special edition item instead.