How can you tell if you'll excel in a sales career? Is being a 'people person' enough? If you feel energized working with people, that's to your advantage. There are a number of steps each sales process follows toward the goal of completing a sale. When you understand the sales process and the sales skills your process requires, it's easy to break down the process and focus on what will double or triple your closing ratio.
Let's compare the sales process to a game of tennis. If you want to play tennis first learn the rules. Next, decide what skills are needed and how to perform each one. Practice those skills. After understanding the basics it's time to engage. With a little playtime under your belt it's natural to start developing strategies to score more points efficiently. The sales profession is similar.
The sales process helps sales professionals determine the sales steps required to sell a particular product or service. An effective sales calling script is designed to engage prospects so sales people have more conversations and spend less time dialing. The old concept of 'Sales is a numbers game' is marginally true. Sure, if you haphazardly swing a racket a thousand times maybe you'll score a point. If you work on skill and strategy you'll score on a regular basis and win more games.
Selling is fun and rewarding when more sales are made. If you're a great talker but a poor listener, you're missing opportunities and sales. Both skills are useful. If you're uncomfortable closing a sale, prepare ten closing statements and practice those statements. McDonalds is famous for increasing their sales by tens of millions of dollars by training their staff to ask, "Do you want fries with that?"
Asking for the sale is not offensive it's part of the service you provide to help prospects buy. Closing is the signal it's time to make a decision. Objections are to be answered so prospects feel they're making a good decision. Answer an objection and close again. People buy benefits so prepared concise and powerful benefit statements to use at the right time. Talk less and sell more. Count how many closing statements you use during your sales process. It's not unusual to close 6 times before a prospect says yes.
Every time you ask a question and receive a positive or specific response from a prospect, that's a buying signal and permission to move to the next stage. Successful sales people continue to ask questions throughout the sales process. Questions are part of the strategy; they are powerful tools. Practice and memorize as many questions as possible; they'll help you increase your closing ratio.
The sales profession is exciting and challenging. Phone sales skills require a different methodology than in-person sales. Seek out the training you need to be an expert sales person in your chosen field. Measure your performance and single out those areas where you struggle. Improvements tend to be incremental and long lasting. A conscious, systematic approach to each step in the sales process will propel you into the circle of top performers. Make more sales with less effort by mastering the sales steps in your niche.
Knowing how to sell begins with perfecting your sales process. Sales skills evolve. A conscious and continual effort reaps big rewards. Need help with mental fortitude? We're experts on cold calls and internal messages that create success! Kimberly Schenk is an Executive Recruiter (20 years) and Recruitment Coach (7 years).