I had a salesperson who worked for me years ago who was outstanding at building relationships with prospects. She had a way of genuinely connecting with people that built instant trust and credibility.
She valued her relationships with her prospects above all else. Even above asking them to buy something from her. She couldn’t bring herself to ask for the order. She honestly felt it could damage the relationship if the prospect saw her as a salesperson.
She didn’t work for me very long. I had a requirement that my salespeople made certain that all prospects knew full well that they were there to sell them something.
I understand it can be uncomfortable to ask people for their money. However, too many salespeople put their proposals and presentations out there and wait. Very often they end up walking away with no sale.
If a prospect doesn’t quickly see the value of the salesperson’s products and jump right in to buy the sales opportunity may be lost.
Asking for the order is a vital part of the sales process. It is the logical conclusion to a professional sales presentation. Prospects expect to be asked.
Researchers asked people who were not persuaded to buy why they didn’t go ahead with whatever it was they were offered. Interestingly enough, the most common answer was that they were never asked. In some cases, they were convinced of the value of the offering and would have gone ahead, but nothing happened. The salespeople didn’t ask them to make a commitment or to part with their money, so they didn’t.
Don’t ever let the fact that you didn’t ask someone to make a buying decision be the reason a buyer doesn’t move forward. It can be as simple as saying, “How would you like to handle the investment for this?” Practice saying it in a business-like manner. It works fine when delivered with confidence.
Knowing when to ask, however, is every bit as important as doing it. Sometimes salespeople wait so long to ask for the sale that the right time to ask passes them by. To get past this timing challenge, use trial closes to take a prospect’s buying temperature.
You do this by simply putting the word “if” in front of your usual order asking questions. For instance, “IF you were to go ahead with this how would you handle the investment for the purchase?”
It’s designed to take the temperature of the sale. If the prospect is warm enough, you would move to asking your final order asking question about delivery date, paperwork, etc.
Asking for the order doesn’t always work, but this much is certain; it works a whole lot better than not asking. So ASK!