Can’t close a sale?
It’s not because you need closing skills. It’s because you need selling skills. Or better stated relationship building skills, questioning skills, and communication skills.
Every salesperson wants to know how to “close a sale.” Even more want to know why they can’t close some specific sale. They write me, they call me, they get frustrated, they buy books on the subject, they try, they get rejected, they get stalled, and of course they get lied to by their prospects.
In short, they (you) can’t complete the sale.
If you don’t close the sale, you don’t make a dime. Invest a few dimes in my Close the Sale webinar and turn them into dollars.
Here’s a clue. Forget closing tactics. They’re worn. They’re awkward. They’re manipulative. And they don’t put you in a very “professional” light.
Here’s a bigger clue: What you have failed to uncover is the prospect’s motive to buy what you’re selling.
Here’s the biggest clue: You’re looking for a tactic when what you really need is a better strategy.
Here are 4.5 self-evaluations and idea-generators that will put your inability to close in the proper perspective.
1. Start with questions that make the prospect consider new information:
— Question them about the specific value of what you sell.
— Ask them what happened the last time they purchased what you sell.
— Ask them how a purchase will impact their profit or productivity.
2. Look at the way you present your product or service:
— Is there room for more interaction and feedback?
— Are there times in your (boring) presentation for the prospect to talk?
— What percent of the time does the prospect talk?
— How compelling is your message?
— How polished are your presentation skills?
3. Ask questions that make the prospect look good:
— Ask for their opinion.
— Ask for their feelings.
— Ask for their expertise.
— Ask for the benefit of their experience.
4. Ask for the order in a way that’s “assumptive” rather than “cornering.”
Ask: Assuming we pass this test today, Mr. Jones, when would be the perfect time to begin (deliver)?
4.5 Keep in mind that when your prospect is NOT talking, he or she is formulating impressions and opinions of you and what you sell.
In effect, they are deciding yes or no while you talk.
The more you let THEM talk, the easier it will be to get those feelings and impressions revealed.
Look at it this way. If you talk, you’re selling. If they’re talking they’re selling themselves.
If you still insist on a “close” try this one: “Mr. Jones, is there anything else you need to know before I enter your order?” The prospect will say “no” and you respond, GREAT!
The point of this lesson is: Not being able to close is NOT a problem. It’s a symptom. The problem is: you have presented poorly or you have created barriers, or you haven’t uncovered the motives to buy, or all three.
My bet? All three.
If “not closing” is a symptom, you have to look at your selling process from the beginning, to find out where the problems or barriers are. If you do, you’ll find out where the opportunities are to solidify a purchase BEFORE you get to the closing of the presentation.
It seems so logical to complete a sale during the presentation rather than the end. Why then, doesn’t everyone do this?
One reason, is that it takes more preparation, more personalized information, more self-study before the presentation. Another is because many of the people who teach sales are still stuck in the 70’s.
But by far, the biggest reason is that you, the supposed master salesperson, are unwilling to change your backwards pattern of: gain rapport, probe, present, overcome, and close. As long as you feel the need to close, you will be stuck there.
Maybe if you took a different view. One where you measured success from the front of the sales process rather than the end. Walk in. Tell the prospect that you feel he should buy from you and that you’ll make a presentation to confirm it. Then tell the prospect “If at any time during my talk that you decide NOT to buy, just ring this bell (gong) — if you don’t ring, I expect at the end you’ll sign the contract. Is that fair enough?”
As far-fetched as this may sound to you, I ASSURE you that it beats trying to “close” times 100. Stop thinking “close” and establish a strategy throughout your presentation that generates a “buy.”
If your “open” isn’t compelling, then your “closing” will be elusive.
Want more information on closing the sale? REGISTER NOW.
Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of twelve best-selling books including The Sales Bible and The Little Red Book of Selling and 21.5 Unbreakable Laws of Selling. His books are now available as online courses at www.GitomerVT.com. For information about training and seminars visit www.Gitomer.com or www.GitomerCertifiedAdvisors.com, or email Jeffrey personally at firstname.lastname@example.org.
© 2015 All Rights Reserved – Don’t even think about reproducing this document without written permission from Jeffrey H. Gitomer and Buy Gitomer, Inc.