Sales Tip - Can You Shortcut The Sales Process?

Consumers routinely go through a decision making process when they make a sizable investment in a product or service.  It’s not uncommon for a new or even veteran sales person to be fooled into believing they can shortcut this process.

This is a true story about Tony, a seasoned sales person with a high tech communications company.  Tony’s customer contact is Steve.  Little did Tony know, but Steve had already conducted an extensive background check on Tony’s organization, products, and services and very much liked what he saw.

When Tony arrived at Steve’s office, Steve immediately ushered Tony in to his office.  Steve started the conversation with how grateful he is that Tony came to visit and how much he liked Tony’s products and services.  Steve stated that he is ready and willing to move forward as long as Tony’s prices are acceptable.  Of course Tony is delighted to say the least and moves into his proposal and the cost of his solution.  Steve said he would need the offer in writing and Tony promptly offered to have a quote to him in the afternoon.  Tony rushed back to the office and worked up the quote, taking 10% off the price, and overnights it to Steve.  Tony followed-up with a phone call the next day but Steve was unavailable.  Tony called again the next day and Steve stated he has not had a chance to review the proposal but is going out of town for the week and would review it on the plane.  When Steve returns, Tony contacts Steve who states he had reviewed the proposal but needs a much better price because a competitor of Tony’s has offered a price 10% below his.  Tony takes another 10% off the price and Steve says he needs to review the full proposal with his boss.  

I think you would agree that this is not an uncommon sales interaction.  The likely outcome is either the business at a 20% loss or no business at all because the competition has just met Tony’s new price.  Little did Steve know but his organization had a more significant business issue that needed to be solved soon.  Little did Tony know that Steve was not fully aware of this issue and that he had just the solution for Steve.

A true sales professional needs to understand and respect the potential buyer’s decision making process.  A sales consultant can then utilize an effective selling process to help the client discover business issues that are most important to act on now.  

Key Skill Elements Are:

  • A specific and measurable Call Objective
  • A Customer Focused Compelling Business Reason – (as opposed to an elevator speech)
  • Mastery of asking Probing Questions targeted to explore opportunities and confirm needs
  • Powerful and influential benefit solutions to high priority customer needs
  • Effectively Handling Objections without Negotiating – (giving anything away)
  • Negotiating differences – (unresolved objections) only after all selling is exhausted
  • Closing each customer interaction for measurable customer commitments to advance forward

If the sales professional can stay with or slightly ahead of the customers buying process they will have a greater degree of control and likelihood of making the sales.  This mutually satisfying sales/client relationship will result in more high priority solutions for the customer and greater revenue and profits for the salesperson’s organization.   

Bill Heyden

Heyden Training

Signature Sales Performance Skills
Cutting Edge Programs That Make Change Happen
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