Successful professional buyers know more about sales than a lot of salespeople. They will be unlikely to fall for sales tricks or manipulation tactics. Professional buyers are responsible for finding goods for their company. They have to be good at it because they can lose their jobs if they make a bad deal.
In a smaller company, buyers may oversee all of purchasing, or for larger businesses, they will likely specialize in a specific industry such as women’s accessories or healthcare or electronics. Check out this buyer’s marketplace for components to get an insight into a professional buyer’s marketplace for electronic components.
Buyers have their own techniques and methods; they will be motivated by different drives and goals which will impact how they go about their job.
Type #1: The Number-Cruncher
These buyers are driven by facts and figures. They collect information and use it to build a model of the market as it stands. Then, they use this model to acquire the best possible product at the best possible price.
They will use facts collected during the purchasing process as ammunition. Later on, they’ll reuse the information to soften up the salesperson and get a better deal.
Because they live and die by analysis, they usually take a long time to come to a decision. They may require multiple appointments before they commit. Their background will usually be in finance or business studies.
Type #2: The Intimidator
These buyers will use their position to bludgeon a good deal out of a salesperson – they will shut down, threaten, or even show open hostility during a presentation. Their aim is to get the best possible price by any means necessary.
A stereotypical salesperson will use manipulation and deceit to make a sale and the intimidator is a mirror image of this. The intimidator will likely have an extensive background in purchasing and will have fallen into this role by accident rather than intention simply because “the job was there.”
Type #3: The Engineer
Professional buyers with a background in technical or R&D are usually more interested in how a product works above anything else. They will focus on the technical details and features of a product; they look at how the product works instead of what it does.
If these features are good enough then the offered price will become less and less important in that they will assume it is a good price. Like the number-cruncher, they are very fact orientated and will appreciate a good spec sheet and a tour of the engineering department or factory.
Type #4: The Talker
These buyers think they know everything about the market, and they relish any opportunity to share this knowledge. They will usually have a strong commercial background so will need a lot of information to nudge them in the right direction.
They want products or services that are in line with what they know about the industry – they will have their own opinion on what is most valuable in a product and it is key that a salesperson picks up on this in order to deliver an effective pitch.
Now that you are aware of the different types of buyers, you can easily access who you’re working with while also knowing the best way to getting a fair price from whatever you’re selling. And if you are a professional buyer, having these insights will allow you to become an even better one!