How to sell and overcome objections is a common question. People don’t want to be seen as being salesy. But every business owner knows that at some point, you have to sell.
- But what if you’re not a “born” salesperson? And how do you do it without being salesy?
- 3 Sales Strategies for Converting More Prospects into Customers
- Sales Strategy #1 – Small Commitments
- Sales Conversion Strategy #2 – Repetition
- Sales Conversion Strategy #3 – Honesty
- Sales Strategies Conclusion
- How To Overcome Objections And Sales Resistance By Obliterating Worry
- The Fear of Making A Mistake
- What To Do…And What Not To Do
- Food For Thought: Look for Hidden Meanings
- Winning In Sales In The Digital Age With David Hood
- Top 10 Online Closing Techniques to Make More Sales
But what if you’re not a “born” salesperson? And how do you do it without being salesy?
Sales ability isn’t something you’re born with. There are some people who have an easier time selling because of their personality traits, but it’s a skill that everyone in business needs to learn. Even if you’ve always felt that sales aren’t your thing, you can still master these skills and become a great salesperson for your business.
You may not like selling because you feel like a “salesperson” talking to a “prospect.” But in reality, it’s just you talking to another human being. Like any other encounter, you need to start by building rapport. Spend some time chatting, finding common ground, and getting to know the person before you start discussing their needs and your product.
Learn to Listen
Most of sales is about listening. Listen to the person and try to understand their problems. This will reveal information you can use to determine whether your product is right for them. Listen more than you talk and make sure you understand what they’re saying. Clarify if you need to. Pay close attention to body language and non-verbal clues as well.
Know Your Product
If you know your product well and you’re confident about its quality, you’ll find it much easier to sell. You should know each feature it offers and the specific benefits they bring to the customer. In other words, don’t just know what the product does, but how it can help improve people’s lives.
You should also know what sets your product apart from others. What does your product do uniquely well? How does it solve problems differently from other products on the market? Know your industry and know your competitors.
Don’t Be Afraid of “No”
An important skill for salespeople is to build up a resistance to the word “no.” If you’re terrified of rejection, you won’t be able to approach customers and try to sell your product.
When a customer says no, it just means that your offering isn’t a good match. Furthermore, it’s not a good match for where they’re at right now, which means it could be right for them in the future. “No” isn’t a rejection of you personally. It’s the prospect giving you some valuable feedback.
Give Up the Hard Sell
When you think “sales,” do you picture the fast-talking high-pressure approach? You shouldn’t. Good sales is all about building a relationship with the prospect and working together to see if your product meets their needs.
Think of it this way: You’re getting to know someone new and seeing if they need what you have to offer.
Sales is about getting out there and talking to people. Get yourself fired up with plenty of positivity and make some new friends. The more people you talk to, the higher your rate of success. Also, the more you meet people, the more experience you’ll get and the more you’ll learn and hone your sales skills.
Are you struggling to get comfortable with selling? Check out Sell More with Digital Rapport® program, where I teach you the A-Z of mastering the mindset and skills you need to sell effortlessly. Check it out here
3 Sales Strategies for Converting More Prospects into Customers
Are you looking for ways to increase your sales? Are you interested in opportunities to produce more revenue faster? I’ve come across three sales strategies that have helped me convert more prospects into clients. These strategies will help you develop a basic understanding of how people buy, as well as improve your selling skills for existing products and services.
Sales Strategy #1 – Small Commitments
Elicit a “yes” to something small and build to a big sale
You know the expression “Pennies make pounds.” It means that small things can turn into big things. This is exactly what happens when your sales message asks a prospect to make a series of small, easy commitments.
One yes can lead to another and then another and then another…until before the consumer realises what’s happened, he/she has said YES! to your product or service. (This is also how a sales funnel can work with micro-commitments to move people up a product offer ladder.)
People often find it easier to agree to small details than to say “Yes” to a large commitment. Capitalise on this tendency by leading your potential customer through a series of small, painless “yes” steps before closing in for the “kill” — your ultimate sale.
Instead of asking a customer to commit to a purchase, you ask them a peripheral question that’s designed to get the “Yes” ball rolling. Then you build on that yes with more yeses until you’ve got a commitment to buy. This is sometimes called the Incremental Close
Let’s say you’re a xzy Air Conditioner Salesperson. Here are
- “Are you trying to beat the summer heat?”
- “Would you like to have an air conditioner delivered immediately?”
- “Would you be interested in an air conditioner that comes with free installation?”
Every time a consumer says “yes” to a benefit that the salesperson is describing, he/she begins to build a mental picture of already having the product and begins to experience the positive emotions of owning the product.
Yes, In Theory
Another way to get commitment is with an “If I would, would you…” situation. With this tactic, the prospect is only asked to make a theoretical “yes” to your offer, so it’s very, very easy to agree. As with the Incremental Close, every “yes” is another link in the chain…another small “push” towards the finish line up ahead and the checkered flag that says, “Sold!”
Sales Conversion Strategy #2 – Repetition
Once is NOT Enough
If a prospect doesn’t respond to your offer, do you say to yourself, “What’s the point of following up? If they didn’t buy immediately, they’re obviously not interested or they’re not really serious. Those types are just a waste of our time!”
What are you thinking!!! There are a variety of reasons why prospects don’t buy from you initially and only one may be that they’re not interested in what you have to offer.
- They may not be ready…yet.
- They may need more information.
- They may still be researching other vendors.
- They have to save the money to make the purchase
Maybe they’re just plain worn out from being “pitched”.
Thanks to the folks that developed “captive audience advertising,” you’ll see sales messages at petrol stations at the airport, online at the supermarket and…in public restrooms! That means there’s almost no time during the day when a consumer isn’t being sold something by someone.
In fact, according to some studies, the average consumer sees 3,000 marketing messages every day.
So what can you do? Is it possible for your message to compete with all that ‘noise’? Yes! The best way to get a consumer to tune out the competition is to turn up the volume of your offer.
And the way to do that is with frequency and a series of messages….that arrive at strategically timed intervals. (This is how autoresponder messages over time can work)
Why “strategically timed”? There’s a fine line that separates frequent contact from annoying overkill. Sometimes on late-night TV, an advertiser will buy time and drop in the same 15-second spot at every commercial break during the program. By the 9th time you’ve heard the pitchman say, “Do you want to earn a million pounds?” you’re screaming “No” back at the screen and ready to take a vow of poverty.
Make sure that you vary your contact methods and your message so that you come down on the right side of the line.
Food for Thought: The Power of Nine
Statistically, you’ll need to contact and then follow up with prospects nine times before they buy from you.
Sales Conversion Strategy #3 – Honesty
Get real to make a deal
In order for your marketing message to be heard, you need to establish trust and “disarm” a consumer’s built-in skepticism about advertising and marketing claims. That skepticism…cynicism in many consumers…can completely derail your ability to make the sale, so it’s your job to overcome it.
The best way to accomplish your goal is with good, old-fashioned honesty. Once you’ve established that you’re speaking honestly with them, they’re likely to give the rest of your message a bit more attention than usual…and be a little more open to it.
The Do’s and Don’ts of Honesty
Honesty is a way to make a sale and an important way to build your reputation, and you’ll sew what you reap if you try to cheat people. If you pull the wool over a consumer’s eyes, don’t think for a minute that he/she won’t spread the word — the negative word — about you and your business.
Being honest doesn’t mean revealing secrets about your product’s flaws or focusing on shortcomings in your service. It DOES mean toning down the over-the-top language of sales
“With xyz walking shoes, you could go from Greenford to Ealing and never need to sit down.”
and conveying the benefits your product has to offer in more believable terms.
“xyz walking shoes provide support and long-lasting comfort so you won’t have to rest your feet as often.”
When you speak honestly, you sound less like a high-pressure sales “machine” and more like a real person…and wouldn’t you rather buy from a person? Well, your customer would, too!
Food for Thought: Speak the Truth
By admitting honestly that your product is not the perfect solution for everyone, you increase the chances that the prospect will listen to why your product is perfect for THEM.
This theory is frequently used in the promotion of weight-loss products: “Our diet supplement is too powerful and too expensive for someone with just a few pounds to lose” says to someone who’s extremely obese, “We mean YOU.”
Sales Strategies Conclusion
Take what you have learned and apply it to your sales strategies. Get more sales and make more money. Keep in mind that there is always room for improvement and the only constant is change. To keep up with the trends, change your sales strategy. Find a better way and make sure your prospects are buying from you.
How To Overcome Objections And Sales Resistance By Obliterating Worry
Objections Are Your Friends – Sounds crazy, doesn’t it. Yeah — crazy like a fox! If a potential customer is voicing objections, it means that he/she is at least somewhat INTERESTED. Otherwise, there’d be no reason to raise an objection.
Sometimes an objection…even the loudest, most emphatic-resounding “no”…isn’t really a no at all. It’s just a request for a solution to a problem.
And as a problem solver, you’re “filthy” with solutions!
The Fear of Making A Mistake
We previously in The Power Of Using ‘Fear’ In Marketing and Sales spoke about how to use fear — a basic human nature button — to motivate a consumer to buy: fear of a lost opportunity, fear of illness, etc. But there’s another side to fear. For many people,
Their fears are what keep them from making the purchase.
Fears Are Objections That Are Waiting To Be Spoken
Consumers’ fears can kill your sales, so as a problem solver you need to declare open season on them. You need to target those fears and then make sure you’ve provide enough information about benefits, guarantees, etc. to stop them in their tracks before they start doing their dirty work on the mind of your prospect.
What are consumers afraid of?
- Did I buy the best?
- Did I buy a lemon?
- Did I overpay?
- Did I buy something I really didn’t need?
- Will I get what was promised?
- Will I be able to get a refund if I made a mistake?
- Do I really need this?
What To Do…And What Not To Do
If your marketing message is able to diffuse objections by anticipating and answering them in advance, that’s great. If a consumer DOES raise an objection, don’t freak out. It may not mean what you think.
If possible, try to delay confronting a prospect’s objection until you’ve completed your presentation so that you don’t get side-tracked. The trick here is to make it clear that you’re not dogging the question/objection.
Chances are, you can answer the questions in your online/presentation, so make a statement like, “I’ll be covering that point in a moment, and at the end of our conversation, I’ll be happy to answer any questions or objections you may have.” (If doing online presentations you may have to redo this section after you have listened to your audience feedback and then incorporate that into the iteration )
This also works when doing a zoom call and trying to upsell high ticket items. Listen to what is being said.
- DO listen carefully before answering. (Online take on bard any comments and feedback)
- DO act interested in the objection.
- DO restate the objection before answering it. (Make sure that you fully understand it. If not, get clarification. )
- DO isolate the objection while trying to determine the real, or hidden, objection.
- DO convert the objection into the form of a question.
- DO answer the objection
- DON’T place undue emphasis on any objection. (It may simply be a question.)
- DON’T treat any objection as an unjustified question, either by facial, vocal or body expression.
- DON’T anticipate what the person is trying to say. (You’ll probably misunderstand and offend the prospect.)
- DON’T interrupt when someone is making an objection. (Your potential customer will be much more relaxed if you let him finish the question and more receptive to your answer if he feels you’re giving a response to what he’s saying, not a “canned” sales response.)
When you’ve gone through these steps, ask your prospect: “Does that satisfy your concern?” or, “Have I answered your question?” or “Does that put your mind at ease?”
Your job is to pinpoint the sub-text of what a prospect is saying. Find out if the voiced objection is the only one. When a potential customer has an objection, you want to answer it…not get into an argument. Soften your response with phrases such as “I suggest” and “as you know.”
One approach is to say, “That’s a good point to consider. Your question is whether this is the smart thing to do, isn’t it?” The essence of what you’re asking is, “If I can satisfy you on this one point, you wouldn’t have any objection to buying immediately, would you?”
Food For Thought: Look for Hidden Meanings
“I can’t afford it,” is a self-protective, way of saying, “Can you lower the price?” “I can’t wait,” is a buyer’s way of asking, “Can you deliver it fast?”
Winning In Sales In The Digital Age With David Hood
David Hood is the CEO of Vanillasoft and on this episode, he is sharing how we can leverage digital in our sales process and really thrive.
David explains the following in this episode of the Salesman Podcast LIVE
- How to cut down the time it takes to get into quality sales conversations
- The importance of being quick in your communication with prospects
- Why you should narrow down the social media channels you social sell on
Top 10 Online Closing Techniques to Make More Sales
So, we need to be good at all the closing techniques.
And if you’re like me, you’re a lot more comfortable with some techniques than others.
But before we get to those, why do you need closing techniques when making sales?
One word: Objections.
Brian Tracy, arguably the finest sales trainer in the world, says,
“The fact is that objections are good. Objections indicate interest. Successful sales have twice as many objections as unsuccessful sales.”
Unfortunately, objections feel like rejection to a lot of folks who don’t like to sell. That was me. For a few years, sales was an area that scared me to death.
It felt a lot like being on a stage with immense pressure to perform.
Not all closing techniques convert well with online sales pages, but these do…
Sales as Service!
Flipping the script though, like Tracy has done in his comment above, encourages even the non-salesperson to provide the best service to the prospect.
If the salesperson understands that service is ultimately their job, they not only have permission, but a duty to help people solve their problems – in exchange for money.
Closing techniques are not sneaky tactics to separate the buyer from his wallet, but persuasive tactics to get prospects to take action on something they already want and need, and to move toward that solution.
Sometimes, they’re not ready, but waiting only makes their situation worse. That’s where the right closing technique can help them take action – and hopefully implement that solution to make the necessary changes.
Closing in sales letters – especially online – presents a special problem.
We can’t be face-to-face to establish the physical rapport. Online business people struggle with that as evidenced by the rapid adoption of video on-camera sales letters.
So, we rely on closing techniques proven to work online.
Below, we review the top 10 sales closing techniques used by the most successful online marketers.
One or all of these may work for you. You may think none of them will work because your niche is “special”.
Nonsense. I used to say that too. The truth was simpler: I was afraid to ask for the sale.
My love of staying in business (which means making money) was greater than my fear of asking for a sale, so that’s finally gone. (If you’re in my community, you may have noticed that.)
Let’s review closing techniques those below.
Closing techniques proven to work online
This is commonly known as a pricing panel. The prospect feels like he is making a choice among three products or three service levels when in reality, she will pick the one the owner wants 90% of the time.
Usually, the panels are set up like the one above:
- A low-cost, stripped-down version. (nobody wants to go slumming!)
- A high-value option in the middle that suits the needs of nearly everyone with a slight price increase over the the low-cost version.
- And a premium, high-cost version for those buyers who always go deluxe.
Of course, the middle one is the one the seller wants nearly everyone to buy.
Cost of Inaction Close (COI)
Hat tip to Alex Mandossian for this tip. He advises coaching students and clients to focus on COI, not ROI when presenting options to prospects.
But ROI – return on investment – is inherently positive. It will give prospects the feeling of hope and possibilities, right?
That may be true, but COI – cost of inaction – triggers the more powerful emotion driver – fear of missing out (FOMO).
Cost of Inaction needs to be spelled out: Here’s what’s going to happen if you DON’T take advantage of this today.
A great analogy is wanting to play the piano for 10 years, but never taking lessons. To continue to do what you’ve done is get what you’ve got. Still won’t be able to play the piano in 10 more years.
It’s totally emotional and psychological, but works like gangbusters.
FOMO will show up quite a bit in these closing techniques as the primary driver, but let’s just say it taps into that dark place we all go when we feel like someone else is getting a better deal.
Many, many online marketers love this closing technique because it’s very tangible, and works like nothing else if…
…you enforce your deadlines.
A good countdown timer like Simple Countdown Creator allows marketers to schedule promotions and automations to ensure that the deadlines and sales actions happen as advertised.
Prospects and customers get accustomed to purchasing your products before the deadline because the deal will be gone after the deadline.
There are a couple of types of deadlines:
1. Fast-action – like the one on the left, the timer shows the visitor that they can save an extra 20% with a special coupon code in the next 14 minutes and 40 seconds before the countdown timer expires.
2. Sale period – this can be hours, days or weeks, but there is a deadline looming. And of course, the further out the deadline, the less urgency the prospect feels to take action.
The issue with deadlines and timers (other than enforcement) is getting the timing right. As the graph below demonstrates, sales over a period of time has a predictable pattern with a spike in the beginning, a lull in the middle, and a massive spike at the end.
Often, the final spike as the deadline closes in can be 70-90 percent of sales.
So, the seller has two choices:
1. Collapse the time of the sale to remove as much of the lull as possible, or…
2. Figure out a way to spur sales during the lull period to improve conversions then.
Some techniques for that are:
1. Incremental price increases
2. Reducing bonuses
3. Sales contests during specific periods of the sale
And others, of course.
The big driver behind deadlines are intense scarcity and more FOMO.
Online marketers love the demonstration close.
And why not? It’s a classic.
It’s worked at the department store makeup counter for years.
Vacuum salesmen terrified a lot of homeowners by dumping dirt in the carpet to demonstrate how powerful their machine was often wowing the residents.
My favorite was the Rainbow Vacuum salesman who came to the house when I was a kid and demonstrated to my fastidious mother how dirty her carpet was by demonstrating how great the water-filled vacuum was. She was mortified to see the mud in the container swirling as he vacuumed. We bought the Rainbow Vacuum.
We use the demonstration close often on a bridge page to pre-sell our viewers on software or training programs.
Getting a customer to do a quick demo showing the power of the solution with real results helps prospects see how a “real person” has used the solution and easily translates the possibilities for themselves. That’s the Holy Grail of the demonstration close, and it has been mastered by the QVC folks.
It makes the close a simple process of revealing the price, the value and the buy button.
This is a very popular closing technique, but often forgotten.
Tell prospects EXACTLY what to do.
By showing the prospects a step-by-step process, you’re walking them through the process of buying. And you’re also setting the expectations, reducing the fear of the unknown and removing the hesitation.
Often, this takes the form of:
Step 1 – Click on the button
Step 2 – Input your Name, eMail and Address
Step 3 – Enter your credit card information
Step 4 – Click Submit
Step 5 – Watch your email inbox for delivery of the product…
As you’re demonstrating this process, the prospect is often taking the action steps and following along – making the purchase.
I was just like you.
I had the same problem as you.
I understand completely how you feel.
I almost went bankrupt when that happened to me.
All of those are examples of statements that prospects may identify with.
The empathy close is necessary in nearly every sales presentation. If you don’t identify with the prospect, they seldom become your customer because they don’t trust or relate to you.
With an empathy close, you identify, relate, and trust the prospect first because you understand their problem.
Everyone wants to be special.
And your prospects are special, of course, but you can point out exactly how special they are.
“Only a few people will take action on this because most people are afraid to change their lives. But that’s not you. You are a special kind of person who sees the possibilities, imagines the future, and makes it happen. That’s why you’re one of the very few that will take action on this. And it’s why we only want to work people like you in our private group…”
You get the drift.
Another way to do this is to tell people who this product is NOT for. For example, we have an exclusive live event coming up in October.
There are only 50 seats available.
And it’s limited to people in our 200 or 300 groups. In other words, you have to have a business up, making some sales, and serious about your niche.
If you don’t have a business established yet, this is not for you.
That’s an exclusivity close.
Money Talks Close
With this close, the marketer demonstrates the cost of the problem. It can be tallied up in a spreadsheet-like table.
The prospect can see the numbers and understand the cost of the problem.
If the numbers are correct, the prospect will agree with the cost of the problem.
Then, you propose a solution that will reduce the cost of that problem.
Take Away Close
This is exactly what it sounds like. And it’s incredibly effective.
As the process is revealed, the offer is amended to remove something you’d previously given. In other words, your bonus or extra feature will be removed if you don’t close now.
For example, if you’re selling software online, you may offer 6 extra months of upgrades if they purchase now. If they come back to the site tomorrow, the 6 extra months is gone.
You’ve taken it away.
This takes advantage of the fear of missing out effect so well, it’s almost painful to the prospect, which is exactly what you want…
Are prospects going to believe what you say about the effectiveness of your product solution?
Or are they more likely to believe someone who has used it, and gotten rave results.
Of course, they can more easily believe the testimonials because they appear more impartial.
That’s the beauty of testimonials.
And testimonials can be the element that moves the visitor from prospect to buyer.
These are the top 10 online closing techniques.
And we’ve only scratched the surface.
Any businessperson will want to master these closing techniques and more if they want to make more money. The great thing about an online business is that you can test which work best with your people easily.
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