Why You MUST ask Qualifying Questions Before You Show A High End Product

I see this whenever I visit a different Vacuum Cleaner store;
The customer comes in, asks to look at vacuum cleaners, and the " salesperson"  goes to the one they like & starts demonstrating it. No questions ( " How are you?"  doesn't count), no conditioning the customer for a higher price, no finding out what they would like, nothing.

We ask, in a conversational way; 
" Do you prefer uprights or canisters?"  
" Do you have mostly carpet? Or mostly bare floors?"  
" Do you have pets?"  
" Do you have carpeted steps?"  
" Does anyone have allergies to dust or pollen?"  
" Is there a price range you have to stay in?" 

Now, WHY do I ask these questions? First off, who else asks questions before they make a recommendation?

Doctors.. Lawyers" people you expect to give a lot of money to, right? People who's advice you take, right?

These questions do many things for me; 
1) They show me what not to show the customer. 
2) They give me expert status. The customer doesn't think of me as a clerk. 
3) The customer now thinks the thing I show them is exactly what they should get. 
4) It gives me a chance to establish more rapport with the customer. Now, I'm not selling as much as recommending.
5) By asking about price, I take away all resistance to price later on. I just show them something barely in the price range they stated, and something else maybe 20-50% more. They usually go for the better one. (you'll find outwhy in a minute)

Now, in the customer's mind, who doesn't ask questions in the beginning? Clerks. And clerks have no expertise, have no authority, and can't make a recommendation that will be listened to.

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