A hard sell is the direct sales approach that uses insistent language, pressure, and aggressive techniques to make leads purchase products immediately. It results in customers having negative feelings and impressions about a certain company.

In this article, we’ll review several reasons why a hard sell doesn’t work, compare a hard sell and a soft sell, and grab some inspiration from examples.

4 Reasons Why a Hard Sell Doesn't Work

Companies can choose among a great variety of sales techniques that bring amazing results to business leaders. However, some sales representatives still use a hard-sell approach. The strategy absolutely ignores customers’ needs and wants and only focuses on the fact of purchase. So, let’s find out why a hard sell doesn’t work.

  • Insistent language of sales reps. The tactic can intimidate buyers with an often aggressive tone of voice. It leaves negative emotions and impressions about the company and discourages customers from purchasing a brand’s products or services again.
  • The intimidating character of communication with salespeople. The method can easily hurt the feelings of buyers because of the excessive persistence and the goal of closing the deal. Salespeople as representatives of a company greatly influence the opinion of consumers. Unpleasant communication with sales reps results in a bad impression and takes away the desire to buy something or deal with a brand. Moreover, customers can share negative comments on the company’s site or complain about annoying calls, messages, and emails. Thus, downgrade the rating and discredit a firm.
  • The absence of information about the product’s value. A hard sell focuses primarily on closing a deal. That’s why sales representatives try to sell the product as soon as possible by telling about the features rather than providing its benefits and explaining what problems it can solve.
  • Mistrust in what companies try to convey. Often, sales reps are very fast and desperate to sell the product. Customers may feel insensitive in their own words and it can provoke mistrust and suspicion. As a result, people won’t buy any products.

Now that you know the reasons why it’s better not to consider a hard sell in your marketing strategy, let’s proceed to the difference between a hard and a soft sell.

Hard Sell vs Soft Sell

A hard sell is a sales strategy that involves persuading customers to buy products or services. Sales reps usually use insistent language and strive to close the deal as fast as possible. The approach is considered aggressive because of the behavior of salespeople. They often ask prospects to purchase products without explaining their value and the benefits they can bring.

A soft sell is an indirect approach that entails salespeople offering products and services to customers. Yet, in this strategy, sales reps focus on building relationships with leads and buyers. They aim to gain trust rather than pushing customers to sometimes buy unnecessary goods.

To reach their consumers, sales representatives learn about the challenges, interests, and clients’ points of view. It helps figure out whether their product or service is a great fit for customers. Moreover, salespeople provide genuine recommendations to help consumers solve their problems.

Let’s walk you through some hard sell examples.

Hard Sell Examples

You can encounter hard sell in some infomercials you can see on TV. They are packed with reasons to buy the products and a call to action so that customers could purchase immediately. These long commercials also include the testimony of an expert to convince a customer to make a purchase.

Let’s take the PajamaJeans infomercial, for example. It includes the features of the product, a special TV offer, and a call to action.

To sum it up, if you want to build trust and strong relationships with your customers and want them to become regular clients, it’s no secret that you should better master a soft sell. Consider using soft language and non-aggressive approaches to not only keep your customers but also attract new ones.


  1. This article defines the term and explains the difference between a hard sell and a soft sell.
  2. This article covers the difference between a hard and a soft sell and explains which of them is more effective.
  3. This article clarifies why hard sell doesn’t work on social media.
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