Ask THESE Questions to Win the Sale

by | 2 minute read

Questions will get you answers. The right questions will get you sales. “A lot of sellers do too much talking and presenting, then when they do ask the buyer questions, it’s the same old ‘What keeps you up at night?’ clichés,” Mike Schultz for InsideSales​.com. It’s important that your questions aren't just conversation fillers; they need to uncover important information that will make you more knowledgeable about the prospect. They also can separate you from the other sellers out there (who all are asking the same old stuff).

There are many types of questions you can ask, and each one is valuable for a different reason. Schultz shares a few, educating readers on why they are important and how to use them effectively. For example:

Open-ended questions help get the buyer talking. By definition, these questions are left open, requiring a response. These are the most common questions used in sales conversations, but also, sometimes the ONLY questions asked. “Asking questions that are open-ended is a great way to get vital information,” he writes. “The problem is, too many sellers rely on these questions alone while there are other kinds of questions that can be just as valuable.” Ask open-ended questions to break the ice and get the conversation started, then use other question types to keep the momentum going.

Closed questions, just like you’d guess, are questions that simply elicit a simple yes or no response. Usually in sales, reps are encouraged to avoid these questions, but Schultz believes they can actually play a role in conversations. “Closed-ended questions are particularly helpful for diagnosis and ruling things out (or in),” he points out. “You can learn a great deal of information by asking a series of closed-ended questions.” A great thing about these questions is that they can easily flow into an open-ended question simply by following the buyer’s response with something like, “how so?”

Read about other question types, including category questions, in his entire article. His suggestions can open your conversations to new areas of knowledge, helping you to truly know the buyer, their business and all the ways you can provide value.  

Jessica Helinski

Jessica Helinski

Jessica is a senior research analyst for SalesFuel focusing on selling to SMB decision makers. She also reports on sales and presentation tips for SalesFuel and Media Sales Today. Jessica is a graduate of Ohio University.