You put in a lot of work into finding and nurturing leads. Isn’t it an incredible feeling when you finally get a contract signed, sealed, and delivered? It’s a little like feeling the tape of the finish line break across your chest. You’ve finally made it!
It’d be great if you could feel like that more often. But you can’t unless you’re able to sell more, faster.
And that doesn’t mean cutting corners or forcing deals to the finish. Here are a few tips to turn up the dial on your selling so you can close more deals in less time:
1) Use clear language.
There’s nothing quite as powerful as clear communication. It eliminates an obstacle course of misunderstandings that can add hours, days, or even weeks to a deal.
So consider ditching buzzwords like “circle-back,” “corporate values,” and “drill down.” They’re not quite as effective you think. Favor clarity over jargon. Simplicity and clear communication speak volumes.
2) Share easy and transparent pricing.
Pricing is a unifying concern for any business. Pricing also happens to be a culprit causing sales reps pour time into leads that turn into nothing.
Many sales reps try and soften the blow of pricing early on in the conversation by only revealing a starter fee. You might think you’re only buying time to convince them that your product is worth the real price tag, but it’s a risky game to play. I can say with confidence that I know upfront what I’ll be paying, rather than piece together different fees throughout a sales process. I’m guessing you’re the same.
What to do instead? Be transparent. Be honest. But, above all, stand confidently behind the price. If you don’t convey confidence in the value of the solution you’re selling, it’ll be an uphill sell to get anyone else to.
3) Use paperless contracts.
Paperless contracts are fast becoming the norm for sales teams. Not only do they completely remove the need to print, sign, scan, and fax documents back in forth, they have a slew of other time saving benefits. For example, paperless contracts also make you location-independent, meaning you can sign or send a contract from your phone when you’re away from the office, traveling in another country, and more. You can also sign contracts on-site using a device with a touchscreen and have them stored securely.
4) Offer multiple options.
People are used to having multiple options for any given thing. If they don’t see the option that works best for them, there’s a real chance they’ll skip on to the next service. “You don’t have the shirt in red? That’s okay. The store down the street offers a rainbow of colors.”
It’s important to take a buyer’s habits and preferences into serious consideration if you’re looking to speed up a deal. If they like to do their shopping online, take note. If they like using Apple Pay, take note. If they’re wary of yearly plans, take note. These are all things that help you provide the best and swiftest path for them to pay for the service. Data will give you great insight into this, but another back pocket trick is to simply ask them!
Being sensitive to different buying patterns will prevent you from spending your time dangling a carrot in front of the prospect who really just wants the hamburger.
5) Ask for the close!
One of the most powerful pieces to the closing puzzle also happens to be the simplest. What is it? Simply ask for the close. It’s much speedier to be direct with a prospect (when the time is right), rather than twiddling your thumbs and skirting around the issue.
To those unfamiliar with directness in the closing sequence, it can feel a little uncomfortable. But rest assured, with practice, it becomes much easier. To get you started, here’s a great TED Talk by Amanda Palmer called “The Art of Asking.” Though she deals with a different ask (for funding), she provides excellent pointers for being confident in asking for what you want.
6) Kickstart your next deal by asking for a referral.
This last tip isn’t necessarily for speeding up a deal at hand -- it’s for adding momentum to your next deal. As Dale Carnegie points out, “91% of customers say they’d give referrals. Only 11% of salespeople ask.”
Referrals are one of the greatest ways to re-fill a pipeline. The problem is, sometimes they’re totally overlooked. Don’t forget this springboard into a new deal.
Referral programs can range in formality from asking a brand new customer if anyone they know might be interested in your service or product to an incentivized program for current customers. If you’re starting out, try out the former first. If you’re ready for a more sophisticated program, lean toward the latter.
What are you waiting for? Time to get closing!
Originally published Aug 26, 2016 8:30:00 AM, updated August 03 2017