October 22 2014

What is guided selling?

Guided selling - a phrase with as many meanings as there are business consultants using it.

It is widely used in our line of business today, and in this post I will highlight what it means to me.

Guided selling is the part of configuration that adds more than just selections. It adds business value.

We see some different types:

  1. Understanding needs, defining the configured product
  2. Funnelling in on selection
  3. Selection impact
  4. Propagation
  5. Information presentation

Let’s go through the list from top to bottom. Let me just point out what our customers finds important when it comes to guided selling.

Understanding needs

Guided selling is understanding needs by asking the customer some initial questions. It will guide or limit the user to a defined product. This is difficult.

It requires strong motivation and decision skills from the project group building the business logic. It will move the configuration solution into uncharted territory.

That’s why it’s so powerful.

Funnelling in on selection

Guided selling will steer the customer through the sales process. The feeling of control is as important as controlling the type of information and the format of the output.

By limiting selections in a technical way, you can display different options after each other. By doing this, you will elicit certain behaviours in the customer.

If this is not part of your sales strategy, better fix it fast.

Selection impact

Guided selling is showing how the selection you just made impacts the total order, bill-of-material or price.

This can be technical and cause confusion, but it is a great advantage to see the impact of changes in the configuration.

Guided selling often adds packaged up-sell solutions. This is a great way to visualize the value delivered.


Guided selling shows the real selection impact. This is crucial. Once you've made a selection, all other fields are highlighted with possible usage.

More than one available, one singled out selection and possible selection but with changes to previous decisions.

This is what a guided selling solution should deliver straight from the box. The ease of a visual representation ensures that users always have this information directly at hand (and eye).

Information presentation

Guided selling is showing invisible values. I have been surprised a number of times of how much knowledge some sales processes require.

Take a simple garage door. The ordering panels, windows and other measureable objects should be handled by the configurator. It should do all the work for you.

Just input the width and height and all other materials and measurements should be calculated directly and shown. This truly adds value.


So, did you get the idea?

That’s right, it will help your sales force close more business.


To find out more, see guided selling in action on a tablet as a commercial heavy vehicle is configured.


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