If you can learn to close sales faster, you'll make more money. It's that simple. Faster sales mean more sales and more productivity. And faster sales aren't just a benefit for you, the sales person. When you close sales faster, you don't take as much of your customers' time, and this helps them to do their own jobs better.
Ensuring that the following four things happen early on in your conversations with the prospect will help you to close sales faster.
1. Be Clear About What's In It For Them
Any time a person invests in a product or strategy or idea, they need a clear answer to the question, "What's in it for me?" It's difficult to make a decision without a clear road map of what's going to happen if they move forward. Clearly lay out the road map from your first contact to the close of the sale and beyond. If their association with you and the purchase of your products and services provides a bright ending, and they understand what will happen along the way, they'll be much more likely to close quickly.
2. Provide a Realistic Schedule
Uncertainty is one of the biggest enemies to closing sales quickly. When prospects don't know what will happen when, they drag their feet and put you off until they have a better grasp of the situation.
Be proactive in avoiding this problem by providing prospects with a comprehensive, realistic schedule of the process. A schedule is not just a calendar of events. To truly be effective, a closing schedule should be persuasive. It should include performance metrics so everyone involved can watch the progress of the transaction and see the value of the planned outcomes.
3. Explain the ‘What Ifs’
Everyone knows that life happens, and sometimes plans go awry for one reason or another. You'll be able to close sales faster if you acknowledge the fact that things go wrong and if you have off ramps available for customers if your services and products don't end up suiting them after all.
People want answers to the following questions:
- Will there be any revisions to pricing, staffing, features, or the entire plan? What happens if there are revisions?
- What if the products simply don't work for us?
- What if milestones or deadlines are not met?
When you can answer these questions up front, your prospects will feel more comfortable going forward with the sale because you will have mitigated risk in their minds.
4. Offer a Map of the Landmines
Have you ever felt a little under the weather and gone online to Google your symptoms? Five web sites later, you're convinced you have cancer when really all you have is the common cold.
This happens in sales all the time. Someone is about to make a big purchase and a small problem comes up. Already feeling a little nervous about the purchase, the buyer blows the problem way out of proportion, and pretty soon they feel doomed to professional "cancer," just knowing that everything that could go wrong will go wrong.
Your job is to be the physician here. Just as a good physician can assure you that you just have a cold and you'll get better on your own in about a week, a good sales person can assure customers that, yes, there will be a few minor bumps along the way. Here is a list of those minor bumps, along with their solutions. Together, you will get past those minor problems on your way to the bright ending you explained earlier in the transaction.
If you manage to cover these four concerns early on in the sales process, you will be able to close sales faster and be more productive with your time. By addressing concerns early and keeping surprise out of the way, your prospects will feel more comfortable, and you'll close sales faster.