Every salesperson wants to know how to close the deal quickly and effectively. This is one of the most talked about sales training topics among salespeople and sales managers.
The expression “closing the deal” means getting the business. “The close” refers to the point in the sales process at which the salesperson asks for the business. Closing is easy when you have thoroughly appreciated each customer’s specific requirements and aligned the presentation of your solution accordingly. Closing is the process of helping customers make a decision that will benefit them.
Successful closers know that there is no need to use magic phrases or techniques, because if they’ve effectively followed the sales process, closing the sale is the next step in a logical sequence.
There is a closing technique called trial closing that can be used in your interactions with prospects and customers. Trial closing gives you valuable insights into the customer’s perspective on what you have said, and it enables you to “layer in” another agreement that helps move the customer to an ultimate close. Trial closing ensures that both you and your prospect are on the same wavelength, which adds to a feeling of deeper rapport and general agreement.
Here are some different examples of trial closes that can be very effective when used at the appropriate moment:
- “How does that sound to you?”
- “What do you think?”
- “Is this what you are looking for?”
- “If I can satisfy your concerns regarding this point, are you happy to proceed?”
- “It appears that you have a preference for this option. Am I right?”
- “Are we on track with this proposal?”
- “On a scale of 1 to 10, how well does this meet your requirements?”
There are four important times during the sales process when trial closing can be hugely beneficial:
- After making a strong selling point
- At the end of your presentation
- Before handling an objection
- Immediately before closing
Once you use a trial close, actively listen to what the customers say and observe their body language to assess their reactions. It’s important to bear in mind that trial closing doesn’t directly ask the customer to buy; it asks only for an opinion. Above all else, you just need to be clear that your proposal is right for the customer and you have created a win-win relationship. Timing is everything when it comes to closing and there are a number of indicators, often produced by the trial close, that signal when a close should be attempted. Only close if the customer is ready.
The best part of closing, besides winning the business, is that each time you close you get the chance to broaden and deepen the relationship and move it toward a partnership.
Jonathan Farrington is a business coach, mentor, author, and consultant who guides companies and individuals around the world toward optimum performance levels. He is chairman of the Sales Corporation, CEO of Top Sales Associates, senior partner at the JF Consultancy, and chairman of the executive board at Top Sales Experts.