Discount and Other Words to Banish from Your Close

BY Jessica Helinski
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It’s likely that you’ve gotten advice about what words and phrases to avoid when trying to close a sale. But, has there ever been research that backs that advice? New findings from Gong​.io reveal the words that can actually depress your chance of closing a sale. Chris Orlob, senior director of product marketing at Gong​.io, shared his company’s research, which included the analysis of approximately 519,000 B2B sales call recordings revealing the top-​13 words and phrases that actually lower one’s conversation rates to below average. While the calls involved SaaS companies, the findings can impact any B2B salesperson.

Below are just a few of the words and phrases that negatively impact close rates:

Show You How”

This phrase, when used one to three times during a sales conversation has little effect. This is reasonable, as many reps need to show the workings of their product or service. But, once a rep uses this phrase four or more times, close rates drop by 13 percent. “The takeaway is simple to remember but hard to execute in the heat of the moment,” Orlob explains. “How something works is secondary to why a prospect needs it. When more time is spent on the ‘how’ than on the 'why,' the prospect tunes out. The Why builds context for The How.”

We Provide”

This phrase is a very common opener for salespeople, often used as a template for the value statement delivery. Unfortunately, hearing these words may cause the listener to tune out. When used a few times throughout a call, close rates drop 22 percent.


Want to lower your chances of making a sale by 17 percent? Sprinkle the word discount in your sales conversation. Orlob notes that dropping prices does nothing but cheapen the value of what you’re selling.

The art of sales conversations is a tricky one. Hopefully, this new research can provide guidance for crafting conversations that don't kill your chances of closing.