There are many reasons why you should not sell fake products.
Fake products are goods that are usually of inferior quality.
They are often intended by sellers to deceive and take advantage of unsuspecting buyers, all for selfish reasons.
Although sale of fake products is unlawful in many countries of the world, unfortunately, it is still widely practiced across the globe
Sale of fake products can have severe negative impacts on your business.
Furthermore, it is a knife of two edges because it can affect you the seller and the buyer.
This article is, therefore, looking at the various ways sale of fake products can hurt your small business.
Fake Products: Fake products are inferior
Fake products are inferior because they cannot meet the needs of customers.
For example, if you sell a fake product to your customer, there are five possible outcomes:
- The customer can return the product to you.
- You are likely to replace the product with a genuine product
- You may need to refund money to the customer
- The customer may not get a refund
- He customer retains the product, though unhappily
- The standards organization in your country may take you up
- Customer can take the case to customer protection agency in your country
Clearly, none of the above scenarios can be said to be a pleasant experience both to you and your customer.
At the end of the day, all you get is bad reputation because the customer may never think of coming to your shop again.
Furthermore, he can spread the bad news about your business to family, friends and associates.
And that can easily affect your chances of getting referrals or recommendations.
So why sell fake products?
Fake products Make customers spend more
Customers buy to make themselves happy. But fake products make customers feel bad.
Moreover, it also makes customers spend more money.
For example, a disappointed customer will need to spend money and time moving from store to store in search of original product.
Consequently, the you have caused him inconveniences and wasted his precious time which he would have used for other purposes.
A customer who buys from you is doing you a favor because you are not the only seller of that product in the market.
Therefore, it is your responsibility to make the customer happy by selling quality products to him so that he can be happy to come to your business again.
Fake Products: Destroys business relationships
Sale of fake products to customers can easily destroy existing business relationships.
In business, relationships are difficult to build but quite easy to destroy.
No doubt, when you started your business, you must have spent valuable time and money, trying to establish business relationships and networks.
It is over also important for you to remember that business is built on trust and connections.
Furthermore, once your business partners begin to loose confidence in your business, you will be setting the stage for your business failure.
So why would you like to destroy relationships you have labored so hard to build over the years?
Poor customer retention
Sale of inferior products can make it difficult for you to keep your existing customers.
Furthermore, it can also make you unable to get new customers.
You are in business to make sales and profits. And you cannot achieve these goals without customers.
This is because an happy customer may not:
- Come back to your store again.
- Give you referrals or recommend your business to his family and friends
- Hesitate to spread negative news about your business.
Furthermore, if you are reputed for selling inferior products, you will be unable to compete in the marketplace.
Competing in the market will be like someone swimming against the tide.
Therefore, it is better to sell only quality products instead of inferior goods.
Those who know the difference between genuine and fake products will buy from you.
Some customers may even be willing to pay a little more provided they get value for their money.
Fake Products: Customer service problems
Sale of inferior products can create huge customer service issues for your front desk personnel.
The customer service is where business is won or lost. All problems end on the front desk officers’ tables.
Apart from the stress both your customer service personnel and the customer can face sorting out issues, valuable time can be wasted in the process.
Even if you are able to make a disappointed customer happy, he may not forget the memory of the easily.
Researchers have estimated that only about 5% of dissatisfied customers will complain.
Those who complain to you are those who are still interested in doing business with you.
The remaining 95% will not complain because they do not want to complain.
Instead, they will simply walk away without a word!
Most important, selling fake products to customers can make your customer reps spend valuable time trying too make angry customers happy.
How do you expect a customer service personnel to convince a customer that the fake product he bought is genuine? It just cannot work.
Fake products: Harmful effects
Some fake products can actually be harmful to their buyers.
Fake products, especially in foods, drugs and cosmetics can be harmful to consumers.
For example, you cannot expect a customer that bought a cosmetic that damaged her skin to recommend your business to her family and friends.
But if you sell quality products, many customers will be willing and ready to recommended your business to their friends.
Most importantly, satisfied and happy customers will stick with you both in rough and good times.
They will be your fans.
They will talk the talk for you.
And the best part is that talk is free.
Your take away
If you an importer, do not tell the exporter “ship fake products. I know my people. They will buy”.
Or tell the supplier to mix up the supply: “10 original and 40 fake products”.
Finally, in order to maintain your integrity, reputation and keep your business growing, you should distance yourself from sale of fake products.
Do not, because of greed for money, destroy the business you have labored so hard to build.
If you are reputed for selling high quality products, those who have high tastes for quality will buy from you.
With time, your business can be a great success because satisfied customers can be part of your success story.
Finally, if your business has a good reputation, you can even make little increases to your products that customers can easily overlook.
By Samuel Ijenhi,
B.Sc. Accounting, University of Benin,
Benin City, Nigeria
Founder: Ijenhi Business Solutions