Let’s get serious about what works when it comes to Closing the Sale, is that the art of closing should never be considered as a separate factor in the selling process. In fact, and in my opinion, the professional salesperson begins preparing the prospect for a formal close the minute they walk through the door – and that’s at the first contact with the prospect. That’s right, that’s where the closing starts – right at the beginning of the call.
To add more weight to this argument, all of the top professional supersellers I know, will be quick to tell anyone that the salesperson is compelled to have a constant closing attitude, no matter what part of the selling process they are in, and as such, the seller should apply as many necessary closing examples as needed as an integral part of every part of the sales process. Moreover, top professional sellers are aware of where they need to apply appropriate and essential pointers that draw the prospect to buying.
It is also important for the seller to understand that among the selling fraternity there are also huge misconceptions that surround what the art of closing should be.
Don’t get hung up on using a handful of Text-Book Closes
In my latest series of six books based on the original 50 Ways to Close the Sale, and including Over 50 Ways to Close the Sale, 50 More Ways of Closing the Sale, Another 50 Ways of Closing the Sale, A Further 50 Ways of Closing the Sale, 50 Extra Ways of Closing the Sale, and 50 Other Ways of Closing the Sale, there are over 300 hundred closing styles and techniques for the salesperson to read, evaluate and decide whether they would suit his or her style – then when the seller reads my original closing book, “Over 50 ways of Closing the Sale” and adds those techniques, the seller will be armed with hundreds individual closes to apply when and where they may be needed.
Why so many? That’s simple. Most prospects and buyers today are familiar with many of the sales processes and techniques available to the salesperson for use as they see necessary. Many are old, some are ancient, but the majority are more of appropriate use in today’s business environment. But despite what you see here, the majority of those who say they sell for a living generally will not know or formally use more than two to five closing styles. And if I was paid a dollar for all of those who attended my seminars and workshops that did not know what trial or test close’s were I would have banked a really tidy sum.
For decades now, closing the sale has been traditionally looked upon as a stand alone function that is just one part of the selling process that jumps out at the prospect at the end of a ‘Pitch” (and pitch is something I never use in place of presentation) when a seller formally asks the buyer for commitment. Wow – and many of those in sales are still taught that way (to use pitch), while countless numbers of others in sales still think and sell that way. What a shame.
So having read what I have written above, the first thing you should do is to learn that I did not write these series of books as text-books so that you would know each of these closes word perfect, but as a book that either teaches or reminds the dedicated salesperson what is available and that when and if they feel comfortable with any of the techniques within the content, they should learn, adapt, then rehearse before they trial them live in front of a prospect or client.
However, having said that, the majority of those that will read these books will use these books to remind them of what they used to do but now don’t do. If they also pick up a few to many new ideas in this book as well, then I have succeeded as a sales author. The reality here also, is that these books never have been, nor ever will be, a series of selling and closing master classes.
For those that do their job right, there will never need be an awkward “shall I close now or maybe I should wait before I close?” debate going on in your head, then have a close look at what you believe that selling, as well as closing is all about. To any salesperson who understands the basics of selling, closing the sale is just a natural progression of the sales cycle.
What about those Buyers who “Close” themselves?
I read this every so often and simply shake my head wondering where this came from. I’ve also been in sales for over 50 years and have still to meet one person who closes themselves. These are the prospects or clients where the salesperson found the hot button and then worked in a professional manner to convince the prospect to decide they needed to go ahead – but I’ve yet to meet a prospect that closes themselves.
However, I did experience a call in the late 1970’s when I was working for the Yellow Pages in Country Victoria (a southern state of Australia), where I walked in on a client that had called us to visit him. When I arrived at his shop, after a few niceties he told me he didn’t want a presentation and opened his desk draw and pulled out a hand drawn simulated quarter page advertisement (the largest advertisement size you could buy in the Yellow Pages at the time) and then told me to sign him up. Naturally I was taken back by his actions and it wasn’t long before he told me he had worked for the Yellow Pages a few years earlier and was now ready to expand his business.
I am still waiting for a buyer who closes themselves because I’m a good salesperson, or worse still, because I was an excellent closer – GIVE ME A BREAK!!!
In closing here, more often than not I am told that old story about the one that got away. Fishermen usually embellish those stories about the ones that got away, each new telling the fish gets bigger and bigger. In my experience the same happens in the selling field, far too many sellers embellish their sales stories also and what they didn’t sell, or nearly sold, or filled the order pad and the buyer then refused to sign, will always be an issue that others have to put up with.
And How Much Sales Pressure should be applied?
This is perhaps the best way to close off this article. In fact, it’s an idea that could just make you a fortune. If you need to know how much pressure to use when closing a sale, the answer is simple – just enough – remember that always.
This Article is by Peter Collins – In a sales career spanning more than 50 years, Peter Collins has focused on helping and bringing out the best in others – whether it involves training or mentoring salespeople, managers, business consulting to SME’s. Since the 1970’s Peter has built a reputation as a Nationally and Internationally Published author, and has 65 books to his credit, but he is mainly known for one book based on the Audio Tape series of the same name, Over 50 Ways of Closing the Sale. In his personal life, Peter has been sought after as an encourager and motivator that has given of his time and talents freely despite his busy schedule. Subsequently, he has assisted churches, pastors, community and charity groups, as well as individuals through his teaching, training, development and on-going mentoring.
Peter can be contacted through his website – profitmakersales.com