Dive in and Determine What’s Causing the Problem…. As a sales leader, you probably have a portfolio of communities where some are selling like hotcakes, and well, maybe a few are not. These are the communities that keep you up at night, right? Month after month your sales are slow, and you can’t seem to put your finger on WHY. Well, you’re not alone. It happens to the best of us. Ultimately, we must first isolate the problem before we can find the proper solutions.
Below are 6 Reasons Why Sales Could Be Slow:
You have No Unique Selling Proposition. What do I mean? There is no compelling reason why your buyer should buy your home instead of your competitor’s. This is a clear sign that your current Product/Price/Packaging/Promotion is wrong… and you need to go back and re-position your community. Keep in mind, markets change, and new competitors can enter the market derailing your efforts. The quicker you regroup, the better.
- You have a Unique Selling Proposition, but you fail to communicate it clearly. Messaging matters. This is a VERY CRITICAL element. Your sales team should be able to communicate their USP in one powerful sentence. As should your marketing team. If they can’t, they need CLARITY. Help them first understand the USP. If they don’t get it, show them what makes your community and product uniquely special. If YOU struggle to clearly communicate your USP, then go back to number 1. A compelling USP should be easy to communicate.
- You have a great USP, but you fail to reach the correct target market. Reevaluate your marketing outreach with your marketing team. Explore who is your buyer, how did they find you, and change your marketing efforts to target more of these buyers. If you have modified your marketing and are reaching your target buyer, but your sales remain below acceptable levels, this could be an indication that the market is not deep enough to satisfy your sales absorption goals with your current positioning. Then you have a couple of strategies. You can expand your geographic target to increase your pool of prospects. Or go back to number 1. You either need a more compelling USP to capture a higher share of the prospects in your target market. Or you need to reposition the community with a different USP to attract a different, broader target market.
- Nobody can find you. Is your model home well signed and clearly visible? Or is it in the middle of a construction zone where prospects can’t identify you? Do you have signage both inside and outside the community directing them to your model home? Have you driven the directions published on the website and MLS to ensure their accuracy? Does the address show up correctly on google maps? If exterior signage is not allowed, brainstorm your options. Buyers must be able to find you.
- You’re UGLY. If prospects get to your community but they don’t like what they see, they won’t buy. A properly maintained and manicured community entrance, a “sparkling” model home presentation, clean home sites, a tidy construction zone, and clean inventory homes speak volumes to your prospects. If you don’t SPARKLE, you WILL LOSE buyers. And worse, you just wasted your advertising dollars.
- Your Sales Agent isn’t cutting it. This is usually the first-place leaders go when sales are slow. And in some cases, it’s appropriate. The agent is not following up. He doesn’t have the skills. He doesn’t have the mindset. That’s all possible. But hear me out. Sometimes they don’t have the mindset because one of the above reasons 1-5 is problematic, causing a more challenging sales situation, and they become demotivated. Granted, a ROCK STAR sales agent who is competitively brilliant would not allow items 1-5 to occur. But let’s face it, sometimes they’re not at rock star level yet, or sometimes these items are out of their control. But hopefully, they are within YOUR control. So, don’t automatically assume it’s the sales agent. However, if you’re convinced items 1-5 are solid, then you need to find a new sales agent.
If you have a community where the sales are slow, dive in and determine what’s causing the problem. And then you’re halfway to a better night’s sleep!
About the Author:
Kathy Tucker joined New Homes Solutions as a consultant and partner in July 2018, offering over 30 years’ experience as an executive in the Homebuilding Industry. Her specialty is helping builders develop effective sales programs, rock-star sales professionals, and brilliant sales leaders. She offers development workshops for sales teams and sales leaders including From Basics to Brilliance in Sales Management, Creating and Maximizing your Competitive Advantage, Mastering the Art of Competitive Community Positioning, The Art and Science of New Home Sales and more.
She is available for builder consulting, one-on-one sales and sales management coaching, small group workshops and keynote speeches.