Many salespeople apprehend the closing. And there is a reason, because it is at this stage that your sale ends… or not! The good news, by using your business intelligence and applying some formidable techniques, you put the odds on your side to achieve your goals. What are the best closing practices to know? When and how to close a sale?
Closing: A Business Definition
The term “closing, “a translation of “closing,” is found in various cases (the financial closing, for example). But in business, it defines one of the last stages of the sale, when it is concluded. This is also why closing and contract often go hand in hand, the precious signature of the prospect sealing the success of your actions.
Pay attention to this step, at the risk of seeing your prospect escape you. Salespeople operating in BtoB are used to closing. However, it is also used in BtoC in the case of a long sales cycle (purchase of real estate or a vehicle, for example).
How To Make A Good Closing?
Pay Attention To All Of The Previous Steps
The sales cycle is a continuous process, where every action taken at a given stage has repercussions on the following ones. Consequence: from making contact with the commercial offer through the discovery plan, pay attention to any phase upstream of the closing.
If the work has been carried out beforehand: You make sure you are dealing with the right target. There is no point in “wasting your time” trying to sell an offer unsuited to your prospect’s needs or budget.
- Your business proposition is clear. Your interlocutor understands what you are selling and why you are contacting him.
- Your prospect is already convinced (at least in large part) of the merits of your products or services. You have begun to instill in him the desire to obtain them.
- Sincere objections have already been removed. If the doubts or fears of your interlocutor no longer exist, the closing process becomes much more manageable.
- A relationship of trust between the prospect and you are established, which favors the conclusion of the sale.
- You are guaranteed to talk to the right person. Indeed, if he is not a decision-maker in the hierarchy of his company, you risk failing.
Adopt A Positive Attitude
Closing a sale relies on a subtle mix of active listening and sales pressure. Therefore, stay in a dynamic of open exchange. Your goal is to show the prospect that you’re trying to solve their problems or meet their needs…not to sell at all costs. Active listening during closing is also an excellent way to identify the ultimate brakes that make your interlocutor hesitate and, therefore, to deal with the last objections to finish convincing him.
Identify The Right Moment To Initiate The Closing
The big challenge of the closing lies in not trying to close the sale too early… or too late! It is, therefore, necessary to identify the opportune moment. Be observant, and spot the signals:
- Your interlocutor asks questions about the product, its concrete use, or its functionalities.
- His non-verbal communication reveals an interest in your offer: his posture is open, and he nods, takes the product in his hands, or observes it.
- The prospect wishes to enter into a negotiation. This demonstrates that he covets your offer. Only he wants:
- test you,
- Signify that he retains control of the situation,
- Or even turn the situation to his advantage (to obtain a promotion, for example).
- Once the last objections have been raised, a long silence ensues, a sign that your interlocutor is thinking about your proposal.
As a commercial, use your analytical skills to identify the right timing to start the conclusion of the sale . or postpone! Indeed, signing a contract sometimes seems impossible at the moment.
In this case, delay and propose a new appointment. This way, you have additional time to perfect your argument in light of the latest elements collected. The prospect, for his part, matures his thinking, sometimes to your advantage.
What Do We Do Now?
If your prospect is motivated, he will make the purchase. Otherwise, he will talk about what is causing him problems, thus allowing you to react to these last obstacles and remove any uncertainty. If necessary, act with more subtlety thanks to specific tips:
- The false alternative. You indirectly encourage people to choose by offering several options: “So, do you prefer the blue or red model?
- The last objection. “What would be the previous blocking point that would prevent you from doing business with us? “. This question makes it easier to slide into the closing phase while demonstrating your ability to listen to and understand your interlocutor.
Use The Proper Techniques When In Doubt
You started… and your attempt failed. Don’t panic; you still have cards to play. Discover three tips to know in case of reluctance :
Reframe The Benefits Of Your Offer
If the customer hesitates, go back to the previous exchanges to summarize all the advantages of your solution concerning the problems encountered. This method has the merit of demonstrating your ability to listen and understand the need and proving the advantages of your offer synthetically. This sometimes is enough to clarify its logical benefits in the interlocutor’s mind.
Play On Urgency And Scarcity
“Our offer expires on such a date. It would be a shame not to take advantage of its many advantages”. If you don’t sign now, it will be too late! The sense of urgency or scarcity operates at two levels:
- The risk of not taking advantage of the benefits to be derived from your products or services soon enough. This is particularly convincing in B2B because some professionals are under tremendous competitive pressure: “Our solution allows you to gain 50% in productivity in one year. In the current context, it would allow you to take a step ahead of your competitors. »
Be careful; if the pressure works, you still have to proceed with the rules of the art. Remain subtle, act in full knowledge of the needs and constraints of the prospect, and be honest (if the urgency mentioned is bluster, the client will eventually know it!).
Offer An Incentive Bonus
Does the price or the perceived value of the product compromise the closing? You then have the option of offering an incentive bonus:
- On the value. Change the prospect’s perception of your solution by offering to add a little something extra:
- an additional feature,
- maximum support,
- better guarantees,
- settlement facilities, etc.
This benefit, released at the right time, can create a surprise effect that will weigh positively in your interlocutor’s decision-making!
Finish By Making Sure The Customer Is Won Over
The signing of the contract appears to you as a final victory? Remember that the customer has a withdrawal period… In addition, some prospects validate the transaction for the sole purpose of “getting rid” of you, competitors who are more likely to spread a bad image of your company.
To avoid unpleasant surprises, ensure that your interlocutor is convinced at the end of the interview and that all his objections have been cleared up. You are now ready to master the art of closing perfectly. However, remember that whatever happens, your success will always depend on your ability to listen and your adaptability, essential components of commercial intelligence