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Sales Closing Tips

 

Disciplines > Sales > Closing techniques >  Sales Closing Tips

ABC | Silence after | Watch emotions | Over-closing | No bebacks | Need not be a sale | Horses for courses | See also

 

There are many closing techniques and there are some common tips that are offered to make closing even more successful.

ABC

ABC is a common term which stands for 'Always Be Closing', which is both good and bad advice.

ABC is good advice when it is used to keep in mind that you are always aiming towards a close. It is bad when you just use it to mean battering the customer to death with a barrage of unsubtle closing techniques.

Selling can be a lot like fly fishing. If you tug hard on the line, it will snap and the fish will get away. The best method is a gentle coaxing that gradually brings the fish in to shore - although sometimes when they are spooked you have to let them out again and calm them down further away.

Silence after

When you have used a closing technique, be quiet afterwards and let them respond. If you just keep talking, then you may miss what they have to say - like 'yes' for example.

Silence also builds tension and will encourage them to respond - and a response to a well-put closing question will hopefully be positive.

Watch emotions

Watch out for the other person not only in what they say but also in the emotions behind the words.

Never try closing when they are in a negative emotional state - you will only cause further objection and possibly anger that means they will never buy from you again.

Over-closing

It is not unknown for sales people to talk their customers into closure then carry right on and talk them out again. You can over-do closing and it requires a close sensitivity to avoid this trap.

It is often the fear of the other person saying 'no' that often causes a sales person to keep on talking. You must have faith and also accept that when they say 'no' it is no real comment about you. If you take rejection personally then you are probably in the wrong job.

There are no bebacks

When a customer says 'I'll be back', sales people in many different situations know that this is just an excuse to leave. Thus, it is said, 'there are no bebacks'.

The consequence of this is that when customers say they will be back, you cannot count on it and should treat this as if they will not and decide either to move to the next customer or redouble your sales efforts.

Closing need not mean a sale today

In some situations, there are bebacks. In fact any business sale may require that the sales person make many visits and a multi-million dollar deal can take years to set up.

When you can meet the customer again, then you can have intermediate goals and closure may just be and agreement to meet again. It can also ask for commitment to certain acts such as getting you information or looking at a website. Generally, if you are getting the other person to commit to some action, you are moving the sale forward.

Horses for courses

In all of these methods, remember that all closing techniques are appropriate only in particular circumstances. This can include the emotional state and readiness of the customer.

It also depends on the sophistication of the customer. A professional buyer in a big company has been on all the sales courses themselves and can see a closing technique coming from several miles away. Using simple methods with sophisticated buyers will only serve to annoy them, so rather than treating the situation like one-off selling, use more relationship selling methods, seeking to understand them and meet their needs, both professional and human. Everyone, even buyers, like to be treated with respect, and if they do catch you being a bit crass, then apologize and be more careful where you tread!

See also

Closure principle, Tension principle, Emotions

Sales Wisdom, How to Tell When Customers Are Ready to Buy

 

Books on Sales Closing

**** Tom Hopkins, Sales Closing for Dummies, For Dummies, 1998  **** Zig Ziglar, Zig Ziglar's Secrets of Closing the Sale, Berkley Publishing, 1985  *** Stephan Schiffman, Closing Techniques: (That Really Work!), Adams Media, 1999  **** Stephan Schiffman, Getting to 'Closed': A Proven Program to Accelerate the Sales Cycle and Increase Commissions, Dearborn Trade Publishing, 2002  *** Joe Girard, Robert L. Shook, Robert Casemore, How to Close Every Sale, Warner books, 2002 ** Gary Karass, Negotiate to close: How to make more successful deals, Fireside, 1987

 

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