Sometimes it is hard for a salesperson to know if they should close the deal or walk away from it. You have arrived at the moment of truth and it is time to ask for the sale. You have done everything necessary to control yourself, your process, and the customer up until this point. There are only 3 choices for the customer: yes, no, and maybe. Let’s face it, you are not going to win every sale no matter how much control you have in the process. What you are selling is not going to be a fit for everyone and sometimes you have to simply walk away from the sale. If you did not get a ‘yes’, then everyone must decide if, or how, to move forward. If you get a ‘no’ or a ‘maybe’, that does not mean that the sale is over yet, but there is certainly a barrier for you to work through. Before you decide to work through the barrier or walk away from the sale, there are 5 stages to complete to see if you can still reach a ‘yes’.
- Maintain your position – Don’t back down immediately just because the customer did not say ‘yes’ right away. Especially if the barrier to the sale is price. Remember, never lower your price until you ask twice. Even if there are other objections to the sale that aren’t priced, resist the urge to go immediately into negotiation mode. Always ask twice.
- Check for fitness – Be honest, are you trying to fit a square peg in a round hole? Is the sale really right for you and the customer or have you been ignoring important cues all along?
- Negotiation – Some barriers in the sale are negotiable, but do you have enough cushion to work with? Are the customer’s objections reasonable and workable? Do not create promises you can’t deliver on for the sake of making the sale.
- Managing expectations – You’re so close to making the sale. If you can cross the finish line, how well can you manage the customer’s expectations? Are you creating more problems with this sale or can you reasonably deliver on their expectations?
Is it worth giving up control? – If you have to adjust your deal to the customer’s satisfaction, that means they now have control. This may be ok, but there is a good chance that the customer will remain in control now that the sale has been made and they may become unreasonable to deal with moving forward in some fashion. If they changed the terms on you once, then they are likely to try again. It may be better to maintain control and walk away from the sale rather than developing a difficult customer relationship.