Sales closing techniques inevitably will shift over time, and sales reps need to be aware of how the efficiency of certain sales techniques wane over time. These changes are inevitable because buyers themselves evolve. So sales reps should be conscious of adjusting and altering their sales closing process to meet the expectations, preferences and selling situations of today's buyers. “The old sales playbook, dragging prospects through a sales process and strong-arming them into a purchase, only worked because there was no better way for buyers to buy,” writes Stephanie Ye for HubSpot.
Ye examines outdated sales closing techniques, such as the assumptive close, explaining why they do not work as well for today’s buyers.
Sales Closing Techniques for Today
The “Something for Nothing” Close
This sales strategy involves some kind of discount, promotion or offer of a freebie if the prospective customer buys form you on that day. While this sales strategy may entice the buyer (SalesFuel’s Voice of the Sales Rep report found that a too-high price is a top objection sellers hear), it does not do either you or your prospect any good. “Not only do you come off as desperate, this close leads to unrealistic long-term expectations,” she writes. “Are you willing to set the precedent that every time your prospect pushes back, you’ll have to provide something free?” This sales closing technique is also problematic because it can really devalue your business and products.
Your products and services are good enough to be sold at the price you are asking for. Instead of immediately lowering your asking price or offering to throw in freebies, try digging a little deeper into why your prospective customer does not feel as if your product is worth the price you are asking for. You could call their bluff on their claim that the product isn't worth it. Or, you could possibly offer payment plan options if lack of funds is the issue behind your asking price.
The “Assumptive” Close Sales Technique
The assumptive close sales technique involves the sales rep taking the stance of assuming that the buyer will make a purchase, even if they have not said that they will yet. “Reps will ask prospects things like, ‘So what day should we get started?’ in the hopes their buyers will get in the mindset of purchasing the product,” Ye explains. While this is a common tactic, it is not the best for today’s buyers who may feel their intelligence is being insulted. They know that they have not confirmed buying. So, you should not start vocally assuming that they will be swayed into doing so. Assuming the prospect will go along with this ploy certainly does not position you as a trusted advisor nor does it show that you respect the buyer sine you are essentially trying to pressure or trick them into buying from you. That's why the assumptive close sales technique is not one you should be using.
In addition to the other sales closing techniques she shares, Ye reminds sales reps that today’s sellers do not need to push a close. Instead, you need to guide your buyers to the purchase, paving the path as logical, smart and valuable to them.