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Encyclopedia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Door-to-door is a sales technique in which a salesperson walks from one door of a house to another trying to sell a product or service to the general public. A variant of this involves cold calling first, when another sales representative attempts to gain agreement that a salesperson should visit. Door-to-door selling is usually conducted in the afternoon hours, when the majority of people are at home.

The model

Historically, products sold door to door will be of the same variety that can be purchased at large discount stores. The products accounting for the largest share of direct-sales revenue include cleaning supplies, cleaning equipment, appliances, magazine subscriptions, and home improvement products. The largest subset of these would be the home improvement products/services where items sold could be new or repaired roofs, siding, new replacement windows, and decorative stone. As of 2008 the business model of many companies that participate in this type of direct marketing has changed with the growth of the Information Age. Products sold door-to-door are now more likely to be more etheric or subtle in nature: such as sheets of coupons to events or local businesses, season tickets to local professional sports teams (both of these are known in the industry as "Cert [or certificate] Sales", or subscriptions to home television services or broadband internet services. Telecommunications companies like Verizon Communications (FiOS), Comcast (Cable television and internet) and AT&T (U-verse) all contract with various marketing companies for nationwide sales fulfillment at the residential level. While the older model of the salesman carrying a bag of goods on his shoulder to sell to the public still can occasionally be seen, the majority of today's salesman specialize in the newer field of account execution or literature distribution.

In many countries, encyclopedias, including the Encyclopædia Britannica, were frequently sold by door-to-door salespeople, although this practice has also seen a decline in recent years.

Banning

In the United States, door-to-door sales are illegal in communities that have passed a Green River Ordinance.

Door-to-door shipping

A similar, but unrelated term is door-to-door shipping, which is a service provided by many international shipping companies. The quoted price of this service includes all shipping, handling, import and customs duties, making it a hassle-free option for customers to import goods from one jurisdiction to another. This is compared to standard shipping, the price of which typically includes only the expenses incurred by the shipping company in transferring the object from one place to another. Customs fees, import taxes and other tariffs may contribute substantially to this base price before the item ever arrives.

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