Your cold calling has hit paydirt, and you have an interested lead on the other end of the line. Your products and prices seem tailor-made to fit the person’s needs. So, how do you take the next step and close that sale? Try one of these five closing techniques and watch your conversion rate skyrocket.
1. Ask for the Sale
Many people in sales make the mistake of highlighting all the positives about their goods or services without every actually asking the lead to make a purchase or a commitment. Customers are often unsure about what to do when it comes to initiating a major purchase. It’s up to your salesperson to take the lead and guide the product. So, after extolling the virtues of what you’re offering, ask directly, “Can I help you complete this purchase/sign up for this service now?”
2. Make Your Move to Close When the Lead is Excited
Potential customers go through many emotions during a major buying decision. They are often happy and hopeful, but they may also be anxious, uncertain, and apprehensive. An important part of lead nurturing is helping your lead resolve his or her doubts. Don’t jump the gun and ask for a sale when the potential customer is nervous or stressed. Instead, help the lead talk through his or her doubts and explain the benefit of what you are offering. When the lead is excited and positive about the opportunity you are presenting, make your move to close.
3. Add a Sense of Urgency
There’s an old saying in physics that an object at rest tends to remain at rest unless acted upon by an outside force. When you’re cold calling, you’re reaching potential customers who are, essentially, at rest. It’s up to you to apply enough force (persuasion) to get them to move. One way to do this is by introducing a sense of urgency to your sales pitch. Point out the advantages of making a decision now instead of putting it off. Perhaps, for instance, you could explain to the lead that you’re offering a discount on your goods or services that is only available for a limited time.
4. Get the Lead’s Feedback
If the lead remains hesitant in spite of your best efforts to make a sale, simply ask, “What would it take for you to purchase this product?” Answering this question will make the lead put him or herself in the role of a buyer and increase your chances of making a sale. The answer to the question will also give you an idea of whether or not you and the lead will be able to come to mutually agreeable terms.
5. Get a “Small Yes”
Sometimes, people simply aren’t ready to purchase a product or service after one contact with you. That’s when you forget about making the sale at that moment and switch to a lead nurturing approach. Instead of getting the lead to make a commitment to buy, get them to commit to a smaller request. For instance, you might ask the customer if you can call again in a week to talk more about what you’re offering, or you might ask for permission to send the customer free newsletters via email. The more contact the lead has with you, the more likely that he or she will convert to a paying customer.
When it comes to closing deals, there are practically as many techniques as there are salespeople. The five principles listed above are excellent ways to turn a long-shot lead into a customer for life.