Today we met an Indian manager who we had cooperated with for a long time, talking about the problem of their company’s senior management reorganization and the reform of purchasing system. We met in the Sofitel hall. We listened to customer’s analysis in the lobby with the shining crystal lamps and the echo of the high-heeled shoes. It is great honor to communicate with customers and it is also the fastest way to improve ourselves.
India, the big country in the world, is now the market that many export enterprises hope to develop. The big population and the developing step make the local market more business opportunities. However, we have met many problems in the process of developing Indian market, and it is the confused feeling of love and hate. But in reality, Indian customers are very nice. We have many Indian good friends who are very kindhearted and friendly during the cooperation with them. In the current society, they still keep an old practice of marriage from which we can feel their respect on parents and their simpleness.
Through the experience of working with Indian customers for a long time, I have summery some tips about how to follow up with Indian customers for you.
It can be divided into eight steps. Hope it can help you.
When developing Indian market, do not worry for no information, because Indian customers’ information can be searched easily. You can search some relevant information through some Indian B2B websites, and then find their company websites and B2B websites. And in the homepage, you can easily find some relevant contact emails and phones, and you can send development letter and confirm customers’ purchasing information by phone.
Indian customers love comparing price. It is price that attracts Indian customers, so you can highlight price to attract customers first. After sending mass development letter, you may get 2-3 percent reply. Of course, if your data is reliable enough, you may get more. When dealing with these precious replies, don’t hurry up to rely but analyze them first, checking whether they are interested in products or just ask for quotation. For the first reply, you can recommend some hot-sell models in the local market first without quoting. After customers confirm that that’s the model they want, then you can talk about the price.
When quoting, leave some bargain space because 99% of Indian customers used to say the price is too high and then ask for discount. But do remember that do not lower the price earlier but tell your customers your price value. What’s more, you should know your customers’ purchasing quantity before quoting and quote according to quantity. If you have cooperated with some big brands, you can tell them. Of course, if you have cooperated with the small brand while you are communicating with the big brand, there is no need to tell your cooperated small brand.
Bargaining is a normal thing with Indian customers. In addition to take a firm stand when bargaining at the beginning, you will have to lower the price to attract your customers finally. But do remember that you should know their target price before reducing the price so as to see whether there is great difference on price. Of course, customers’ target price is not real sometimes, because most of them will probe your bottom price with target price. So when checking with their target price, you can lower the price slowly. If their target price is far more different from our bottom price, then you should consider clearly whether they are your target customers.
When customers are satisfied with your price, then you can send samples to them. However, there are also many customers asking for samples before they accept the price, and you should be careful and arrange samples after knowing the price difference of their target price, because if the price gap is to big, then you may lose contact with your customers after sending samples.
Most of the customers asks for samples for testing, so you should keep following up with the customers and ask for the feedback. Then you should push them to place order.Of course, in this stage, you can ask your customers’ feeling for the products and ask for some feedback or improvement advise. Do not urge them to place order too much because it may offend them. Of course, if they said the samples are under testing, you can directly ask when will finish the testing and judge whether they are telling truth or just looking for excuse.
When customers confirm that the samples are ok, you can push them to place order. You can ask them to place order aboveboard. If they don’t reply you, you can push them by the production cycle; full production schedule or other customer’s placing order, because customers care much about the delivery date at this stage.
When customers confirm the order, you must feel happy, but do remember to urge them to confirm products packages and design and other details and then ask them to arrange deposit or open the L/C. As long as they send the deposit can you arrange the material purchasing and production.
The above eight steps are available for many counties. But according to different purchasing habits in different countries, there is some difference on tracking ways. For example, for the European big brands, you must send samples if customers are interested in your products which will be a long-time wait.