Tag Archive | "closing techniques"

Two Reminders On Closing More Sales

Let’s assume you have a customer who is sincere and she tells you, “I want to check with a friend.” Remember: Always clarify the objection first just to make sure you’re on the right track…

Salesperson: “When you say you want to check with a friend, are you checking with them to make sure this is the right car for you or is there some other reason?”

Customer: “Well, I don’t buy many cars and my neighbor has helped a couple other people I know get their new car.”

We could say, “Let’s get your friend,” but that usually doesn’t work out very well. So let’s rephrase her objection to a “good decision” and then to “budget.”

Salesperson: Betty, it sounds like you just want to make sure you’re making a good decision on your new car, am I right?

Customer: Yes.

You have changed it to a good decision, now clarify and rephrase that to budget:

Salesperson: When you say you want to make sure you’re making a good decision, are you concerned about something I said, is it color, equipment, or is it the price?

Customer: Price.

Now just change price to budget.

Salesperson: It also sounds like you’re on a budget, am I right?

Customer: Yes, I am.

Now just isolate budget with ‘other than fitting this into your budget, etc.’ and wrap up this sale.

Remember: 72 percent of customers say they’re ‘just looking’ but 78 percent end up buying!

Want to sell more cars? When a customer says, “We’re just looking,” don’t question it – just respond positively and move on. It’s just a reflex objection and it doesn’t matter. If you challenge it or try to commit them to buying anything today at this point, you’ll most likely end up losing the sale.

Why? Because “just looking” is simply a reflex objection and has no bearing on whether they plan to buy. It’s just something all people, including you and me, have learned to say when we’re approached by a salesperson who greets us with, “Hi, how can I help (assist) you?” Just learn to work with it!

The wrong way:

Salesperson: Can I help you?

Customer: No thanks, we’re just looking.

Salesperson: If you find something you like, are you ready to get it today?

Customer: No, we’re really just looking!

Salesperson: We have 0 Down, 0 percent Financing, AAA and Costco discounts, a $5,000 rebate and a red-tag sale today.

Customer: Like I said, we’re just looking!

The more effective method:

First, change your greeting to eliminate ‘just looking’ . Then if you still hear it, respond with the following:

“Great, when you get a little closer, are you leaning toward new or used?”


“Congratulations, who’s the lucky one, who gets the new car this time Bob, you or Betty?”


“Great, you folks sure picked a nice day for looking at cars, sure is nice out, isn’t it?”

You’ve acknowledged and bypassed their ‘reflex objection’ and now you can move to the next step in the sale.

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Persistence Eliminates Resistance

The difference between persistence and pressure is technique.

J. Douglas Edwards was a Master in sales. You may not have heard of him, because he’s one of those ‘old time’ sales trainers from a long time ago who mastered and taught the principles of selling. He started below the bottom and then learned how to sell his way past the top. He’s one of the greatest salespeople ever and he and a few others helped refine the techniques used by professionals in sales everywhere today.

Mr. Edwards points out that real sales pros have one quality that most salespeople are missing … and that’s guts.

A lot of salespeople are real nice and their customers love talking to them, they just don’t sell much. And a lot of salespeople have a tremendous amount of product knowledge that they share, and they don’t sell much, either.

Mr. Edwards said most salespeople just don’t have the guts to ask for the order. He said they’re so afraid of hearing a “No” they won’t let themselves ask for a “Yes.” Plus, most salespeople who do try to close, don’t follow the Basics, don’t build enough value and don’t know how to close the sale or overcome the objections they’re sure to get. You’ll hear, “No” six times before you’ll hear, “Yes, we’ll take it!”

Why do people say “No” if they really want to say “Yes?”

The short answer is … two reasons:

  1. Reflex. Same reason we all say, “Just looking” when a salesperson at a department store says, “Can I help you?”; it’s just reflex. And that’s even more true in closing if you ask a yes or no question. The customer’s automatic reflex answer is generally “No.”
  2. Fear. Sales psychologists hooked people up to EKG machines to gauge how they responded in a real selling situation. They were given real life presentations on expensive products they wanted to buy. If they were asked a yes or no closing question, their reactions were just short of having a mini heart attack – and then they said “No,” even though they wanted to buy the product.

When they were asked other closing questions that didn’t require a yes or no response, no problem, and no mini heart attack.

A typical example

“If we can work it out the way you want to buy it, can we send you home in a new car today?”

This question will get you a ‘No’ almost every time.

Instead, try:

“Bob, sounds like we found the perfect car – can I get you a hot cup of coffee or something cold to drink while I take care of the paperwork?”

This will close it on the spot or move you closer to a sale each time. The customer will either pick something hot or cold to drink or they’ll say they aren’t ready. Even that’s OK, as long as you know how to handle objections, because that response easily leads you into “Why?” and straight to another closing question.

Don’t make closing tough and don’t take it so hard when you hear “No.” They aren’t saying, “No, I don’t like you.” When you hear “No,” assume they just said… “Based on what you’ve told me so far, I can’t say ‘yes’ yet, tell me more and ask me again a little later.”

Try this…

Carry six pennies in one pocket. Each time you ask for the order, casually move one penny to your other pocket. This reminds you to ask for the order at least six times, and when you do, you’ll make more sales.

Learn a dozen closes, ask more often and you’ll sell more!

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Always Be Closing

The actual closing of the sale is by far the most important step in the selling process. Without it, you haven’t sold anything, have you? However, it should also be the most natural part of the process. Everything else you do leads to that point.

I teach lots of techniques for prospecting, meeting people, qualifying, presenting, demonstrating, and addressing concerns—and they’re all important. But, unless you can close, you’re like a football team that can’t sustain a drive long enough to score.

The biggest complaint I hear from most salespeople is that they don’t know when to start closing. Those people just don’t understand the simple fact that a true Champion salesperson is closing all the time. He or she is constantly trying test closes and will go into the final closing sequence anytime they sniff the sweet smell of success. The problem with too many salespeople is they get so wrapped up in the steps in their selling sequence that if the prospect wants to go ahead with the purchase before they’re finished presenting, they lose their momentum and go tripping awkwardly into the close, which can cause tension and make the buyer hesitate or decide to re-think their decision.

Believe it or not, there are prospects out there who want to make a decision quickly. If you keep talking instead of closing, you’ll run the risk of un-selling them just as fast. So, during every step of the selling cycle, you must keep one eye on the prospect at all times watching for cues as to their readiness to go ahead.

The most common cues include:

  1. The client starts talking about the vehicle as if they already own it. “Wait ‘til Bob sees me in this new truck.” “I can pick up more of the kids after soccer practice with this van.”
  2. The client relaxes his or her body language. They may have been standing back a couple of feet with their arms folded, but is now leaning against the vehicle. Or, they may have been sitting back in their chair, but lean forward over the paperwork.
  3. Clients begin asking more questions or asking you to repeat information. They want to be certain they understand because they’re thinking ahead to ownership. These questions might include warranty information, or how to work the radio, or about the upgrade options available.

Okay. They’re ready. You clearly see that the time has arrived and you start walking into the dealership…to your desk or conference room. This is where most vehicle sales are lost. You are thinking ahead to filling out paperwork and getting the numbers. The clients have their own thoughts. Most are thinking about how to finance the vehicle and they’re getting anxious thinking about what the final amount will be after all the fees are added up. They wonder if they can truly afford the monthly investments. What kind of interest rate will they qualify for? They fear they won’t be good negotiators and won’t get a “good deal.”

So, while you’re thinking ahead to the detail work, old Mr. Fear is creeping up on their shoulders and talking in their ears. My advice: forget the details until you’re actually sitting at the desk working on them!

During those critical minutes it takes you to transition from lot to desk, you need to keep them focused on ownership. Do a brief recap of what they liked about the vehicle. Keep them talking in the positive and thinking positively about the investment without making any promises. Don’t say, “Our finance guy is great. He’ll get you a good deal.” No, no, no. You may have the greatest finance wizard in the business working with you, but just that little change in the client’s mind from “I love the color, the features and that new car smell” to “here I go paying yet another bill at the end of the month” can quickly and easily kill the sale.

The salespeople who close sales and keep them closed remain focused on the present moment. They keep their conversation in line with the client’s thoughts and keep them excited about ownership while taking the long walk down the hall toward the financial details. They are then able to change gears and move to their paperwork smoothly after everyone is settled into the proper environment.

Careful thought must be given to how and when you’ll produce your closing paperwork. Many prospects will tighten up and try to change gears when they see you pulling out forms or turning to a computer to enter data. Don’t risk upsetting the emotional balance that’s tipped in your favor. If at all possible, get into the habit of writing brief notes during every presentation. Your prospect will get used to seeing you writing and not be put off when you begin filling out the actual agreement.

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