Do You Have The Sales Trust Factor?

BY Liz Wendling
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Trust me! I cringe when I hear a professional or salesperson use that offensive phrase. My guard goes up. My
intuition kicks in and says, "Danger. danger, pay attention!  If you have to tell me to trust you, I won’t." Trust levels plummet when professionals use that term.

Another cringe-​worthy offender I should mention is the phrase, “Can I be honest with you?”  Please send that one back to 1972.

Now back to trust. Customers buy from people they trust. No trust, no sale!

If you want your customer’s trust, you have it earn it. You have to build it. You have to work to consistently keep it. Trust is built over time. It can be lost in seconds.

Trust is the single biggest motivator of buyer behavior. Trust is the key component to establishing a successful buyer/​seller relationship. Building relationships is the key to sales success. Trust is the foundation.

Customers have negative perceptions of salespeople because selling itself has been associated with manipulation, dishonesty and trickery.  That stereotype of untrustworthy, lying salespeople still comes back to haunt the sales professional every day. You can play a critical role in overcoming distrust.

Words count and seconds matter when it comes to trust.

Your prospects will most likely decide within the first few minutes of talking whether or not you’re the kind of person they want to do business with. We size people up based on the way they communicate with us – and we do this very quickly. It comes down to person to person trust.

Customers overwhelmingly buy from people they trust.  Customer relationships are longer lasting, more effective and more efficient when built on trust. But building trust takes time. The only way to do this is to sell in a consistently trustworthy manner.

Your potential customers are not only listening with their ears, they also are observing with their eyes. Do you have a specific, well-​thought-​out plan designed to overcome this obstacle? Are you building greater levels of trust with your customers?

You may be the most honest salesperson on the planet. If your customers don’t perceive you to be trustworthy because of sloppy sales skills, outdated techniques and negative selling behaviors, it doesn’t matter. If you don't earn trust, your customers will buy from someone else whom they do trust–even if the offering isn't as good.

Knowing, understanding and practicing the traits that customers like are the best way to gain trust and close the sale.  So, in addition to being honest, you need to be knowledgeable, punctual, solution-​based and customer-​focused, just to name a few. The way you relate in sales situations determines your customer’s level of trust.

Paying attention to what makes you believable, credible and reliable will go a long way in helping you project the language of trust.

I see people destroy their trust in the sales process. They rarely recover. It does not have to be that way!  Always check your behavior. Focus on trust building activities with customers. Create an action plan and constantly focus on executing that plan. Once you’re able to increase your trust factor with buyers, you will also see an increase in sales. Salespeople who fail to put an emphasis on developing trust and rapport actually do a disservice to their customers. This will leave the door open to your competition.

Conduct yourself as a true professional. Your buyers will like it when you do. You will become more successful. The most effective way to build that trust is to put customers’ interests first; always. You must do this by design, not by default.

In today's highly competitive marketplace your customers have many options. They are looking for a person they know they can trust to work in their best interest.

Stop focusing only on what to say on sales calls and meetings. Start paying attention to what you shouldn’t say.  Trust me!

I couldn’t resist.

Liz Wendling is the author of two books (and counting) — The Unstoppable Business Woman and Everyone Sells Something, a columnist for Colorado Biz Magazine, and one of the first nationally credentialed facilitators for Napoleon Hill Mastermind groups. Learn more at lizwendling​.com.