Want to close more sales, follow the sales process with 100% of the customers 100% of the time. Seems easy right? Why wouldn’t you follow the sales process? The answer is simple, there are four reasons that salespeople do not follow the sales process:
- Things are going so well that you skip or short-cut steps – That’s right things can go so well that you start taking short-cuts and skipping steps. I used to fall victim to this a lot early in my career. I would quickly begin to build strong rapport with the customer, we would be getting along great, laughing, and I would think to myself, “this is a done deal.” At which point, I would stop information gathering and focus more on things going well than I would about learning more about my customers wants and needs. I would not have the information need to give my million-dollar presentation based upon the customer’s desired outcome and I would give them the nickel tour. During the demonstration drive I would be more focused on chatting with my new ‘friend’ that I forgot to let the vehicle speak for itself and paint the necessary picture of mental ownership. I definitely would not even attempt a trial close, I mean why would I, “this is a done deal.” However, when it came time to present figures and close the deal, my new best friend needed to ‘think about it.’ It took me a very long time to realize what was happening and once I did, I began focusing more on following the process, realizing it was what was best for me and my customer, and then there was no more short-cuts or skipped steps and a lot more sales.
- Things are going not so well because you are pre-qualifying your customer – Every salesperson has pre-qualified a customer and unfortunately many salespeople still prequalify customers. So, what exactly is prequalifying? It is pre-judging a customer and determining that they will either not buy, or they can’t buy. This is such a huge mistake that is costing salespeople deals every day in every dealership around the country. Selling cars begins and ends with your beliefs. If you believe the customer is not going to buy or that can’t buy then you are going to be right. On the other hand, if you believe the customer is going to buy and they can buy, more often than not you are going to find a way to make it happen. So you decide, do you want to be right about the customer is not going to buy or do you want to be right the customer is going to buy. The choice is yours.
- The customer is controlling the sale and not you – We have all been told by a manager somewhere to “take control of the customer.” What does it even mean to take control of the customer? Ask your manager. Most can’t even tell you how to take control, all they know if that you don’t have it and the customer does. However, the answer is actually very simple. The person who asks the questions that gets answered is the person who is in ‘control.’ When the customer is controlling the process and not allowing you to follow your sales process, it means that customer is the one asking the questions and you are the one answering. You MUST learn how to ask the right questions to control the sale.
- You just don’t care, or you are lazy – I am continually amazed, almost on a daily basis at how many salespeople just don’t care about being successful. They don’t care about doing the right things and what is best for their customers. They don’t care enough to do the right things for themselves and their family. A lot of these salespeople would be offended by these statements. They would argue that I do not know what I am talking about. However, their actions would tell a completely different story. And we all know, “Actions speak louder than words.” I also believe that it is this lack of caring that causes people to become lazy. I was recently talking with a colleague the other day and they said that people are inherently lazy because they don’t know what to do. This really blew my mind because it makes so much sense. It is much easier to use the fact that you don’t know how to do something than it is to figure out how to DO IT. This could be consciously or unconsciously. Ether way it will drive people to laziness and drive them to not do or learn how to do the things they are supposed to.
Closing a sale can either be the easiest part of the sale or the most difficult. It really is whatever you decide to make it. This decision is more than words, this decision is made by the actions that you do. Commit to the process, 100% of the time with 100% of the customers. And don’t forget the process being with Being Prepared!