Avoiding Sales Pressure – Don’t Fall For The Hard Sell

Don’t be a victim of the hard sell

Have you ever had buyer’s remorse from buying something that you felt pressured to purchase? There are many methods that salespeople deploy to get you to sign on the dotted line. But if you’re armed with the knowledge of their tactics and ways you can respond, you’ll be able to successfully avoid a hard sell.

  • Common methods salespeople use
  • How to respond to pushy tactics
  • Your legal rights regarding purchases of products and services

Common Sales Methods

There is a range of tactics that salespeople use to get you to make a purchase within their preferred timelines. These timelines rarely allow you to make informed decisions, compare products and their prices, and research the reviews of products and services. Sometimes, the end result is financing a product through a loan.

We’re going to highlight some of the universal tactics salespeople use to accomplish their sales in a short time frame.


Boasting the Quality of the Product

First and foremost, people like to know what they get for their money. They want to know that the product ranks high among competitors, and they want statistics to back those claims. But salespeople know that if they only talk about specs, they’ll only encourage you to dive into more research on your own. Typically, you’ll experience an informative presentation, and then you’ll also hear of who else endorses or uses the product, in an effort to persuade you to make a quicker decision. A good rule of thumb is to follow your instinct to continue your research until you are ready to commit to the purchase.

The Role of a Friend

A good salesperson knows that customers like to feel heard. They’ll demonstrate this by lending an ear to your concerns and reinforce that they understand what you’re saying. This will build a sense of trust with that person, but keep in mind, it’s very much an exercise in persuasion, and feeling heard is not the ultimate reason to make a purchase.

The Appeal to Your “Bigger Picture”

We all want to do what’s best for our family and our future. Oftentimes, we find ourselves trying to navigate what exactly that means, and we can be influenced to make purchases from that vulnerable place. For instance, you may not know if children’s life insurance is a necessity for you, but with the right phrases, a salesperson may be able to make you feel a sense of guilt that you aren’t setting your child up for a bright financial future. You still reserve the right to make an informed decision and you should never have to make those commitments out of guilt or insecurity.


A Sense of Urgency

We’ve all experienced a sense of urgency with limited-time offers and massive sales events. If you’re ever told that an offer is time-sensitive, don’t fall for it. At the end of the day, you deserve a chance to research and compare any product before making a commitment to purchasing it.


We love the idea of returning favors. Many times, we feel if someone is showering us with an evening of cocktails and appetizers, that we owe it to them to purchase something - You don’t.

Responding to Pushy Sales Tactics

Making buying decisions from a place of feeling pressured rarely rewards us. There are very skilled and effective salespeople in every industry, and a good rule of thumb is to never make a purchase decision on the spot. We’re going to show you some helpful responses to a hard sell that will allow you to successfully give you the time and space you need to make more informed decisions.

Ask for More Time
Set your boundary with the salesperson by firmly requesting more time to think over their offer. Ask for their name and contact information and affirm them that you’ll be in touch when the time is right for you.

Check on the Legitimacy of the Business
When you are purchasing a financial service or product, inform the salespeople that you only want to work with licensed businesses- and request a copy or their license and any other comprehensive guides of their services. You can double-check their credentials with the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

Review any Contracts
Make sure you ask for a copy of any financial contracts you’re expected to sign so you have the ability to review it in your own time. After reading over all the documents, calculate if the fees, charges, and terms and conditions are all worth the financial burden of your purchase.

Take Verbal Promises with a Grain of Salt
As with any major commitment, get everything in writing. If you receive any verbal promises from a salesperson, make sure they are written into your contract or agreement to protect yourself in the future.

Explore “Cooling Off” Policies
Is there a cooling-off period where you have a chance to change your mind and cancel your agreement? Check the Federal Trade Commission’s Consumer Information page to learn more about your rights to a cooling-off period.

Allow Yourself Time to Research
Don’t make any commitments without first researching your options and comparing similar products from other companies. You never know if there’s a better offer available to you if you don’t take opportunity to search for them.

Dealing With Sales People At Home

Utilize a “No Soliciting” Sign
If you’re uncertain about your ability to set boundaries with salespeople, then hang a visible “No Soliciting” sign on your property. This communicates to salespeople that you do not want them to contact you and attempt to sell you their products.

Do Not Call List
You have a right to prevent telemarketing efforts via your phone through the National Do Not Call Registry. Registration is free, and if you find that you have an unwanted call after your phone number has been on the registry for 31 days, you can file a complaint regarding the calls to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).


Your Legal Rights when Making a Purchase

The Federal Trade Commission provides a wealth of information on your rights and protections from companies who may mislead or deceive you in order to sell their product or service. In any event, you can file a complaint here.

Don’t give into high-pressure sales methods. Give yourself reassurance that you are not obligated to make any unnecessary purchases, especially in time-sensitive conditions.