hard sell


: aggressive high-pressure salesmanship compare soft sell

Examples of hard sell in a Sentence

Such an expensive project will be a hard sell during these slow economic times.
Recent Examples on the Web If your skin is greasy and acne-prone, using sunscreen can be a hard sell. Brigitt Earley, Glamour, 13 Feb. 2024 This is often a hard sell: spending tax dollars now on programs that won’t show results for years. Baltimore Sun Editorial Board, Baltimore Sun, 9 Feb. 2024 Gas tax hikes are always a hard sell, and raising them to make up for revenue loss due to electric vehicle alternatives might be tougher still since gasoline users would be the ones paying. Russ Mitchell, Los Angeles Times, 12 Jan. 2024 Similar assurances about Hezbollah will be a hard sell here. Shira Rubin, Washington Post, 5 Jan. 2024 China would have to persuade Taiwan’s public of the merits of some form of peaceful integration—a hard sell, but not impossible given China’s economic clout and the possibility that a more attractive government may someday emerge in Beijing. Bonnie S. Glaser, Foreign Affairs, 30 Nov. 2023 The job would not be a hard sell for some, but would not be as easily enticing to others, particularly to experienced managers, according to one former American League executive who spoke on condition of anonymity in order to speak freely. Houston Mitchell, Los Angeles Times, 12 Oct. 2023 This sandbar wedged between the Pacific Ocean and Mission Bay was a hard sell, with narrow lots going for as little as $450. San Diego Union-Tribune, 2 Oct. 2023 But Krofft shows, which featured extravagant puppets and scenery, were often expensive to produce and sometimes had premises that could be a hard sell; one show, for instance, focused on magical, talking hats. Daniel E. Slotnik, New York Times, 25 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'hard sell.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1945, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of hard sell was in 1945

Dictionary Entries Near hard sell

Cite this Entry

“Hard sell.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hard%20sell. Accessed 27 Feb. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!