Do you ever get excited going into a sale knowing that you have a plan to close the deal and everything is going to go your way and then Wham! Before you know it, the customer is beating you up on the terms and price and has full control of the sale. You don’t want to lose this sale and you tend to be a people pleaser, so you are willing to concede and do whatever it takes to make the sale. But you have given over full control to the customer as they bark orders at you and tell you how it’s going to be. It’s not much of a sale at this point as your profits are quickly disappearing and you are creating what will probably be a difficult customer to work with. But how can you get control of the sale to get the terms back in your favor and still close the deal?
Don’t be confused; controlling the sale does not mean you go from being passive to aggressive. Controlling the sale is all about learning how to be assertive and persuasive. This may take some practice, but it is not as hard as you think if you can apply these easy to use techniques that level the playing field for you and the customer so you can both achieve a win-win deal.
- Listen – Don’t be so quick to speak. When salespeople sense that they are being backed into a corner, they begin to nervous talk and give concessions without even defending what is already a fair deal. Silence can be your friend and it gives you time to think instead of defaulting to discount mode. ,,Read more here: the Power of the Pause.
- Ask Questions – Whoever is asking the questions is the one who is controlling the conversation. It is not the one who is doing the most talking. When you feel yourself losing control of the sale because a customer is asking for more than what you offer, ask questions to let them justify their position. Why is that term important to you? Is that the only issue that is important to you? Is this issue a deal-breaker?
- Challenge Objections – All sales objections begin as assumptions, and more often than not these assumptions are incorrect. The price is too high. I need it delivered sooner. I need you to customize aspects of your product. Rather than accepting it as truth and agreeing with them, challenge them to defend their position. “I understand your concern, but what is it based on?” ,,Read more about defending your price here.
- Compare Options – When customers negotiate, they will make you believe that they have another option that is better than yours to pressure you into concessions. Instead of focusing on just one aspect of the deal, compare each aspect of what you offer to the customer’s alternative to help control their purchasing decision.
- Trust The Value – It is okay to be flexible and negotiate terms with your customer so long as you are the one controlling that process. You cannot enter a sales discussion doubting any of the value that you are bringing to the table. This is as true for yourself and what you sell. If you, at any time, demonstrate a lack of confidence in what you are selling and how you are selling it, you create a sense of doubt in your customer and they now feel that they are not getting the best deal. Believe in what you sell and the customers will follow your lead.
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