To Mike, closing is the hardest part in the entire sales process. It’s so natural to get a lead and reach out to out for a talk or meeting, but it’s hard to make them buy.
Based on his negative experiences, Mike concludes three common reasons he fails to close sales and it’s proven that avoiding these mistakes leads to successful deals closing.
1. Not building a strong relationship/rapport with prospects.
From Mike’s one-year sales experience, he finds that customers tend to buy from the salesperson they like. So, how to build a good relationship with them and make them like him? It’s important to develop a strong relationship with customers as it enhances his influence with the customer, making the customer more receptive to his message and granting his access to the key decision-makers to accelerate the sales closing process.
Mike also finds that a good and positive relationship comes from developing rapport, building trust, and demonstrating his expertise to his prospects. To build a good relationship with customers, Mike learns to be a good listener and always show empathy to their problems and needs. He treats every customer sincerely as his own friends to develop trust and confidence and his prospects like that a lot.
2. Not understanding the prospect’s problem and need.
Mike’s first few months in the sales team was tough because he keeps thinking of hitting his sales targets. He forgot to listen to his prospects problems and understand their needs, resulting in objections. Then, he starts to throw questions to the prospects to make them talk about the challenges they face.
By doing this, he puts himself in their shoes and offers suitable solutions that fit their expectations. Now, he closes deals more easily because he aims to solve their problems, instead of hard-selling. He believes that customers can definitely feel one’s sincerity. So, always try to understand their needs and try your best to provide them with the best solution.
3. Not understanding the prospect’s decision criteria.
Sometimes, customers still don’t buy from Mike even though he has already tried to understand their problems, usually because he didn’t meet their decision-making criteria. So, is it because of the price? Or are there any other reasons?
To avoid getting objections at the very last stage, Mike pays attention to their specific requirements to decision making. This helps to ensure that the customers don’t use this as an excuse when it comes to the deals closing stage.
After understanding the common mistakes that lead to failed sales closing, Mike has his own ways to deal with customer’s objections as well.
Objections don’t always mean “NO”. They can be the “excuses” given by a prospect and this could be a chance for Mike to provide them with additional information and emphasize the value of his product or service.
1. “It’s too expensive.” – When customers complain about price, Mike focuses on the value of the product or service. It’s essential to position a product or service correctly to make customers feel that it’s worth their money. So, Mike always convinces his customers by mentioning how his product and service can help to solve their problems.
2. “I’ve never heard of your company.” – This is a common objection, especially when your company is a startup, or still new in the industry. It’s understandable because many people love to do business with those they are familiar with. In this case, Mike will give a brief introduction about ABC company, and explain their value proposition to show that they can really help.
3. “I don’t think my company needs your product/service.” – It’s normal when customers say so to reject an offer. So, Mike initiates casual conversation with them and makes them talk as much as possible. Through the conversation, he may get an idea of the company’s situation – either they have problems that they don’t realize, or they really don’t have a problem at the moment.
If they have a problem, Mike will let them elaborate and start to evaluate their problems to offer suitable solutions. Otherwise, he will end the conversation naturally so that customers will not feel uncomfortable against hard sales.
4. “My company doesn’t need that now.” – When customers say so, it usually means that they realize a problem in their business, but they don’t feel the urgency to settle it immediately. Usually, Mike asks them to explain why they don’t feel the need, and starts to ask questions like “Don’t you think that prevention is better than cure? It’s better to handle a problem before it becomes another big issue.” Then, the customer will start to think about the problems they have and reconsider Mike’s suggestion.
However, Mike doesn’t always have the chance to introduce and explain his company’s value proposition. The customers can be too busy, lack of trust or just not interested in what they’re doing. In this case, Mike doesn’t force them to listen to what he wants to say. Instead, he leaves his name card and gets their contact to follow up in future. This helps to leave a good impression of ABC company and himself.