If you’re anything like most people, you might cringe or feel intimidated by the topic of “sales.” But truthfully, selling can be far simpler than you might think. Take a look at these four phases of the sales process within your funnel and learn how to maneuver from one to the next with ease.
1. Build the Connection
If you aren’t establishing rapport - whether on the phone with a potential client asking for help or networking at local events - you’ll be far less likely to be able to close the sale in the end. This is one of the most common pitfalls of anyone selling services and products.
Jumping into the conversation about how much things cost, what packages include, etc., can deter people away very quickly. And if you don’t learn enough about the person you’re speaking to early on, you may misunderstand their concerns and needs right from the beginning.
However, it can also be a mistake to spend too much time building rapport and not enough on the sale. Start learning how to pace with your leads, so that you only move forward to each stage of the process with their permission.
2. Discover the Need
Once you’ve found enough common ground initially, ask permission to go to the next step. You might say something like, “It’s been really great to meet you and learn about ________,” and then mention that you’d like to ask them a few questions to see how you might be able to help them, finishing with, “Is that okay?”
Sometimes they aren’t ready for that yet, which is okay. If you try to force the next steps, you’ll end up with at least a few objections too early, possibly risking the sale entirely. If they are ready, you’ll enter the discovery phase, where you can begin to ask them questions that help you determine what they’re needing the most help with right now. What are they struggling with? What are they hoping to achieve? What goals do they have?
More than anything else, people want to be understood. What some entrepreneurs and salespeople misunderstand about selling is that it isn’t about telling leads or customers what they need/want. It’s about asking the right questions at the right times, and staying by their side walking alongside them through their buying journey.
3. Present Solutions
To move to this next stage, you’ll again ask if it’s okay to start talking about your possible solutions to their challenges. It’s important to not only cover the basics about what they’ll receive, but to ensure that they see the value in what you’re offering.
For example, instead of talking specifically about what a package includes or a product does, but provide insight on how that provides an emotional, mental, or physical benefit to them. Will it bring them peace of mind, a healthier lifestyle, better ROI for their business? Offer some examples in ways that will make them feel great about the solutions.
4. Close the Deal
Lastly, you’ll talk together about what’s the right fit for them - again, meeting the client where they are. You may face objections in which they may not be open to closing the sale right now, or other objections about cost, getting permission from their spouse/business partner, or something else entirely.
Be prepared to answer some of the most common objections you might face during this stage, so that you can help them better understand how your product or service can be valuable in addressing their needs.
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