Techniques and Advice on Closing a Sale
On the surface, closing a sale seems very simple and straightforward. Let’s say that you do have a perfect lead that’s ready to convert. It seems that all you need to do is present your product, answer a few questions and maybe give one follow-up call before closing the sale.
If you are nodding your head in approval, you are either a very green sales rep or extremely lucky.
Closing a sale is somewhat of an unpredictable process, and even if you jump through all the hoops and avoid all the pitfalls, nothing is certain until your buyer signs on the dotted line.
We already covered a few articles on the sales process, team structures, mistakes, and objections, but today we’ll show you how not to fall at the finish line.
Sale Closing Statistics
Before we talk about techniques and strategies, we’ll skim over some stats that give better insight into the sales process.
- 44% of salespeople give up after one follow-up
- 80% of closed sales take five or more calls to close the deal
- By using social media 73% of salespeople outperform their peers
- Of 12.5 monthly opportunities sales reps close 29.3% of them
- Average close rates across industries – Business industry 27%, Computer software 22%, Finance industry 19%
- Salespeople close three times more deals at the end of the month than throughout the rest of the month. However, they lose 11 times as many, as a result of pushing deals that are not ready to be closed.
Research carried out by Gong.io shows us which words diminish your chances of closing a deal:
“Discount” drops close rates by 17%
“Show you how” harms close rates by 13%
“Contract” drops rates by 7%
“Free trial” lowers your chances by 5%
Best Closing Techniques
There are many techniques sales professionals use to ensure a successful sale. They are very valuable to know as every sales process is different, and you need to be able to read the situation and access what your prospect needs.
The Confident Approach
This technique is best used when you are almost certain you can close the sale. If you read the signals from your prospect correctly, they might just need that final nudge to make the purchase.
If they are on the same page as you, being confident and assertive will most certainly help.
The wrong time to use this approach is when you have a new prospect that you didn’t really talk to before, and their goals are still unclear.
The Urgent Approach
Create a sense of urgency that will sway their decision in the direction you want them to go.
This is done by offering a discount or implying that you are running out of your product soon.
By creating a time-limited offer, you can speed up your sales cycle, but there are some bad sides to this technique.
If your customer is not interested, chances are you won’t win them over with an offer like this. On top of that, sometimes people frown upon discounts and special offers as it shows instability and erodes trust.
Downsize Your Product
When your prospect is objecting to the price of your product, it doesn’t necessarily mean that their budget is tight. Sometimes, they just don’t have a good use for all of the features you are offering.
In this case, it’s good to talk to them and see which ones they would like to exclude. It’s very important to have customisable plans.
This works best for multi-tiered platforms, and it is not to be used if the prospect doesn’t have a price issue.
Save the Best for Last
If you are dealing with a tough customer, never show them your whole hand. Keep one ace up your sleeve for the last-ditch effort to win them over.
Use it only when you see they have one foot out the door, and only if you didn’t already overwhelm them with information. In that case, they’ll just want to hang up because they are intimidated or bored by your offer.
Repeat the Highlights
If you had a productive conversation and your pitch went well, but the prospect is still thinking, go back over the best features of your product. This might remind and convince them why your product is a good fit.
If the conversation wasn’t detailed and they didn’t seem interested in your best features, don’t use this tactic.
This tactic works best with seasoned negotiators. If a customer is searching for a perfect fit for some time, they most likely heard all the tactics before. They might surprise you and ask for a discount even before you offer one.
Here, it’s important to predict that this is coming, so that when they do ask for a discount, you can respond with a condition of your own.
For example: “Yes, you can have a discount, but only if you sign-up today.”
This only works if you are ready to give them what they want and also have something you want in return.
Dig Deeper Tactic
Sometimes it’s not your fault that you can’t close a sale successfully. There are buyers who are just bad at expressing their needs.
It’s very important not to probe the wrong people too much, but if you notice that they aren’t giving you enough information about their needs, you might want to ask a more direct question.
With that answer, you’ll be able to explain better why your solution is a good fit for them.
Never use this tactic on someone who clearly stated why your product is not a good fit for them – you won’t win them over.
Jessica Hawthorne-Castro, Hawthorne LLC
Make the first move!
Making “no-risk” offers and presenting free trials is still a good way to close the deal more easily. Letting them test out your product will make it easier for them to become a paying customer.
Dmitrii Kustov, Regex SEO
Create a personalized journey.
Keep in mind that your customer is a human also, and they expect to be treated as one. Don’t force the sale on them – instead, make an inviting personalized journey.
Tell them what to do.
Be confident and assertive if you want the customer to have a clear picture. Sometimes companies try to build their brand image while asking the customers to take immediate action, and this might be confusing.
Chris Goward, Widerfunnel
Leverage their emotions.
People buy based on their emotions more than facts and logic. This is why you need to understand what emotional state your customer is coming from. It may help you more with closing the sales than facts and figures.
You won’t become an instant sales wizard just by reading these tips and tricks. The key, as with everything you do, is practice.
Sift through your cold leads and try to light a spark by using what you learned.
Choosing the correct interaction style is what makes or breaks a sale.
Remember, your approach must be humanised and custom-fit to every lead, but most importantly, don’t waste their time with information they are not interested in.