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Is It Permissible To Use Selling Tactics To Convince Customers To Buy Something?

Answered according to Shafi'i Fiqh by Seekersguidance.org

Question: I would like to know if using psychological tactics to sell things is haram. For example, one tactic is “bonding” people to an idea by painting a picture of them using the product already and having a good time to increase the mental pressure to buy the product. Another tactic is lowering your voice, so it sounds like what you’re telling them is a secret. I don’t want to deceive, and I want to sell.

Answer:

Assalamu alaykum,

Thank you for your question.

Transactions

It is permissible to use these selling tactics as long as you are not lying and you fulfill the five conditions of a valid sales transaction:

“Five conditions must exist in any article transacted. It must: (a) be pure (0: in itself, or if affected with filth, it must be capable of being purified by washing); (b) be useful; (c) be deliverable (0: by the seller to the buyer, meaning that the buyer can take possession of it); (d) be the property of the seller or the person whom the seller has been authorized to represent; (e) and be determinately known (ma’lum) (0: to the buyer and seller, as to which particular thing it is, how much it is, and what kind it is, to protect against chance or risk (gharar), because of the hadith related by Muslim that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) forbade the transaction of whatever involves chance or risk). (…)“ [The Reliance of the Traveller, k2.1]

Sell how you wish

If you wish to be a salesman who is honest, upright, forthright, and has good character, you can choose to do that. You will become known as such among the people, and you will have blessings and success from it by Allah’s grace. The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, told us, “The heaviest thing which will be put on the believer’s scale (on the Day of Resurrection) will be a good character.” [Abu Dawud & Tirmidhi]

May Allah give you the best of this world and the next, and may you find your trade with Allah to be the most profitable of all.

Shazia Ahmad

This answer was collected from Seekersguidance.org. It’s an online learning platform overseen by Sheikh Faraz Rabbani. All courses are free. They also have in-person classes in Canada.

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