Personal selling involves an oral presentation of the message in the form of conversation with one or more prospective customers for the purpose of making sales. Possibly the biggest disadvantage of selling is the degree to which this promotional method is misunderstood. The second disadvantage of personal selling is the high cost in maintaining this type of promotional effort.
Personal selling is an act of persuasive the prospects to buy a given product or service. It is the procedure of communicating with a potential buyer (or buyers) face-to-face with the reason of selling a product or service. It is a promotional method by which the salesperson uses his or her skills and abilities in an attempt to make a sale.
Disadvantages of Personal Selling –
Personal selling as a method of promotion is quite expensive. Especially when considering the salesperson’s salary, commission, bonus and travel time. Getting a salesman is one thing and retaining him for long is another. Companies acquire a high cost per action with personal selling. Furthermore, it requires plenty of money to prepare your sales representatives, educating them on a range of goods and sales techniques. It is the high cost in maintaining this type of promotional effort. These costs are incurred in spite of whether the salesperson makes the sale. It is a comparatively costly process of selling. So, high capital costs are required.
- Limited Reach
One disadvantage is that your customer reach is limited through personal sales. As a result, it will require an extended time period to create product awareness, particularly if you don’t use other forms of advertising. Therefore, it will take longer to build consciousness of your brand and products, particularly if you use personal selling entirely. The method can only reach a limited number of people. Sales reps have to cover one territory or market at a time. Unlike TV or Radio ads it does not cover s huge demographic.
- Stake in consumer loyalty
Personal selling is such a process-direct and closes between the customer and salesman that consumer loyalty depends on the presence of such a salesman. The firm’s fortunes are tied to the loyalty of consumers which, in turn, depends on the very presence of salesman. It is the most costly method of communicating with prospective buyers as it is labor intensive.
- Negative Perception of Salespeople
Possibly the major disadvantage of personal selling is the degree to which this promotional system is misunderstood as many view salespeople as being excessively destructive or even complete annoying, and only concerned in making a speedy sale. The training of the salesperson is also a very time consuming and costly. The salesperson can sometimes misuse the resources allocated to them. It may be difficult to influence genuine and potential customers where a salesperson lacks good communication skills.
- Administrative problems
Personal selling involves more administrative problems than impersonal selling. Since, the firm is to deal with manpower a driving force behind sales the company has to meet the challenges in the areas of manpower-planning, organizing, directing, coordinating, motivating and controlling. It is time-consuming because it involves bargaining, demonstration, asking and answering questions. It has limited coverage since it is usually directed to one or few people at a time.
- High Job Turnover
Job turnover in sales is usually much superior to it is for other marketing positions. Turnover might leave a company without representation in a consumer group (e.g., customers in a geographic region) for an extended period of time while the company recruits and trains a replacement. It is an extremely labor intensive method. A large sales force is required to carry out personal selling successfully.