March 8

How To Sell A Price Increase? 5 Strategies to Turn Uncertainty To Competitive Advantage


I was delivering a keynote in Miami Florida this past week, and the meeting planner asked if I would mind hanging around for a little question and answer (Q&A). Now, I love Q&A and engaging with the audience, so I was more than happy to agree.

We were talking sales, and just how much the sales process has changed since the pandemic, inflation, supply chain issues and the constant impact so much change is having. The audience was active and asking lots of great questions and keeping me on my toes. Then a CEO, looking profoundly serious and concerned, stepped to the microphone, and asked the one question that seemed to be at the top of everyone’s mind.

The question of how to raise prices, and then get your sales team on board with embracing the concept. The CEO wanted to know specifically how you get your sales team to sell a price increase and understand that the market will bear and prospects will accept paying a higher investment. She went on to explain that even though her competition was raising prices, and customers had an expectation of pricing going up, she just could not get her sales team to buy in.

Great question. So how do you sell a price increase?

5 Strategies Every Sales Team Needs to Turn Uncertainty To Competitive Advantage


  1. Get Your Head Right – first and foremost if you are going to sell a price increase you need to believe in that price increase. More than anything, your customers and prospects are taking their cue from you. If you are confident in what you are selling, and what you are selling it for, so will they.
  1. Train Your Team – do not expect that your team has the skills, the verbiage, or the knowledge to sell a price increase. Spend time with them understanding what they feel like they do well, why, and where they are struggling to position a price increase, and then coach them for success. Go on a sales call, lead by example, and help them gain what they need to sell confidently.
  1. Know Your Reasons – before the team ever goes out the door to sell a price increase, they need to understand the why. What are the reasons that charging this price is going to make sense for the customer? In other words, what is the customer getting for the price they are paying, what is the return on investment? Far too often, I see leaders spend time explaining a price increase by talking about how cost of supplies have increased, or labor costs are rising etc. All good and accurate, but who cares, customers want to know why and how if they pay this price, it is worth it for them.
  1. Choose The Right Target – price increases only work for prospects and customers that see the value and can gain benefit of what you are offering. To sell a price increase effectively you need to choose the right target – target market. Some prospects are willing to pay more for the value they receive, some are not, and you need to know the difference.
  1. Position Risk and Value – if you are losing on price, it is because price is all you are offering. It is myth that customers are price sensitive – a myth. But they will default to price if they believe that price is all you are offering. You need to stop focusing on the price and start focusing on the risk and value.

Everyone seems to think that selling a price increase is hard when it really is not. It is really quite simple; people pay for what they believe has value. Sell the value and you will take price off the table and put yourself well on the path to turn all of this uncertainty to your competitive advantage.

Meridith Elliott Powell

Voted one of the Top 15 Business Growth Experts to watch by Currency Fair, highly engaging corporate motivational keynote speaker Meridith Elliott Powell delivers a cutting-edge message, rooted in real-life examples and real-world knowledge. Meridith’s presentations are full of powerful content, highly interactive, and fun. She helps her clients learn the leadership development, sales and business growth strategies to turn uncertainty to competitive advantage.

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