How To Distinguish Features Vs Benefits

Features vs Benefits

Features vs benefits is a phrase anyone in sales is familiar with. However, many salespeople confuse features and benefits or think they are interchangeable when in fact, they are entirely separate aspects of selling a product. Understanding how they differ can enhance your ability to close a sale and better serve your customer. 

This blog should introduce and overview the topic of how features and benefits are different (when selling) and how to use each to your advantage in any given sales situation. 

Defining The Difference Between Features And Benefits

So what is the difference between a feature vs a benefit? It’s quite simple:

A feature refers to an aspect of your product such as its technical abilities, functions, uses etc. Features are the logical aspects someone is looking for in a product. 

A benefit is how these features enhance their life by making things simpler or more enjoyable. Benefits are the emotional connections someone makes with a product. Benefits should always save a customer stress, time, energy or money. (SYSTEM)

An easy example would be selling the latest iPhone. Its technical specifications such as storage size, camera type, screen resolution, software, colour etc are all features. They are the physical things that make up the product.

The benefits are sold through highlighting features. Features such as the enhanced camera and its ability to capture special moments in the customer’s life are a benefit. More storage built in to keep these photos long-term, a larger screen for easier viewing and enjoyment, a colour choice to reflect their personality and more are all benefits of those features.

Why Understanding Features Vs Benefits Matters

While it may not seem critically important to understand the differences between features vs benefits, it is an essential component of your marketing. Without a core understanding of the differences, you will not be able to effectively sell an item or convince a potential buyer as to why they should buy from you or buy that item over another. 

When you fail to adequately define the features vs benefits of a product to a client or customer, the reasons why your product is the best choice becomes unclear and the item becomes less desirable. 

Benefits are infinitely more enticing than a bunch of technical jargon to most people. Benefits help us feel excited about something and compel us to want it. However, without the features, it is harder to explain the why around how that product will benefit someone. 

This is why features and benefits go hand in hand when it comes to sales. 

Selling Benefits Vs Features

Selling benefits to a customer or client is always going to be an essential part of sales. As humans, we crave reasons for why we should do things. A study carried out in 1978 showed that those reasons do not even necessarily have to make sense! It’s all just part of the human psyche.  

When selling features, your goal as a salesperson should be to match a benefit to each feature. In doing this you are delivering the ‘why’ and demonstrating how the chosen item is exactly what they are looking for. 

Customer Retention

To use selling an iPhone as an example again, imagine the customer simply says I want to be able to take hundreds of photos and not run out of space. Simply telling them that the phone X amount of storage doesn’t display how that benefits them. Advising that this particular phone with X amount of storage typically holds up to X amount of application/music/photos completes the picture and shows how that item can solve their issue.

TriMetrix DNA report

Delivering A Compelling Message Using Benefits Vs Features

Unsure how to stay on track with features vs benefits during a sale? The simplest way to do this is to look at each feature and ask yourself ‘why was this feature included?’ The answer is the benefit. You can then tailor this answer to suit the customer in question, personalising the sale.


Doing this makes your sales more persuasive and demonstrates that you are invested in helping the customer find the optimal solution that enhances their life. It also ensures you do not only focus on the technical features you personally value or feel are beneficial – delivering information in a more balanced, helpful and unbiased fashion. 

Living in the digital age, there is a good chance your customer has already done their research and has a good idea of what it is they are after. Even if this is the case, however, most may still need some help connecting the dots and making the final decision to purchase. 

Hone Your Skills And Up Your Sales 

At SWISH Sales Coaching we support you to hone your skills around delivering information on features vs benefits through a series of language patterns and word tracks. Helping you to memorise key phrases and ensure you never miss an opportunity to make the sale. 

We work by educating managers and teams to understand the 300% rule of value made up of yourself, company and product – all vital parts of why a customer should buy from you. This helps you stand out in a market saturated with choice by making genuine, meaningful connections with customers and enabling you to sell with confidence.  

Our ethical approach to sales does away with underhanded sales tactics and is focused on growing both your success and that of your company with integrity. Learn how to articulate professionally the features vs benefits of your product and become a leading salesperson. 

Become the best in your field with no pressure and exceptional support. Take your sales efforts to the next level and read about our proven sales training, sales coaching, and sales courses.  No matter if you are located in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Gold Coast or anywhere in the world, we are able to assist in providing the most innovative ethical sales training. Get started today with the SWISH Sales Academy – contact us on 07 5531 6485 or join our sales training Facebook group.

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