8 Ways To Close More Sales
Originally published: 08.01.10 by Terry Tanker
Why customers don’t commit and how to change their minds.
Consider taking this checklist or one like it into your next weekly sales meeting and applying it against pending sales. If you do this consistently, chances are good you’ll be moving more sales from the pending column to the signed column.
You appear to be the new kid in town: Potential customers simply don’t know who you are and what they can expect from you. A good marketing and advertising program will resolve this. Asking for referrals from jobs you do land will also get the ball rolling.
Procrastination: Let’s face it. You don’t need it until you NEED it! Spikes in weather always help, like this summer’s heat wave. But to even things out, your sales team needs to have a compelling sales presentation that accurately shows customers the benefits of replacing old and worn-out systems. Energy-cost savings should certainly help move customers to the dotted line.
Competitors: They aren’t going to lie down and let you “have” the business. You have to understand your company’s strength (and weakness) — as well as your competition’s — and then sell aggressively and professionally.
The customer doesn’t get it: Your sales person assumed too many things. It’s easy to do. They deal with heating, cooling, and IAQ issues every day, but they didn’t transfer the right knowledge at the right pace. Make sure your sales team is connecting all the dots for the customer.
Follow up: The selling cycle takes time, and many sales team members are alphas — they need a sale now. Patience, persistence, and a well-placed follow up are always impressive and universally rewarded. Make sure team members don’t let sales fall by the wayside because one or two more customer touches were needed to ink the deal.
Ask for the order: It’s surprising to me how often this does not happen. A sales person makes their best pitch and assumes the customer is going to buy (they gave all the right signals), but then weeks or months go by, and still no signed order. Did someone forget to “close the deal” by simply asking for the order???
You haven’t sold a solution: You’re trying to sell a box. Very few household/ office building items are as important as heating and cooling. And none are as far out of sight and therefore out of mind. Sell solutions to problems.
You haven’t pre-qualified the sales lead: It’s important to understand where the customer is in the buying cycle when you enter the picture. If you’re stepping in at the wrong time, you have almost no chance of making a sale.
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Common sense – it’s simply knowing the difference between right and wrong. It entails a personal and subjective process of analyzing a situation and finding a solution that works. For most people I think it’s their first instinct, the rational thing they would do without giving the situation a thought. Again, I said for most people.