The sales process is an extremely strategic course. From overcoming objections to handling the close, ensuring a successful sale requires covering various bases.
So why is it that so many salespeople struggle with this process?
In many cases, they don’t have a clear, consistent understanding of the steps involved. Sales success comes down to having a process you can follow that has proven to work.
The first step in any sales process is defining what that process looks like. Fortunately, Jeffrey Gitomer, the author of The Sales Bible, has put together a sales process that any salesperson can follow.
The following is an overview of Gitomer’s 39.5-step sales process for successfully navigating the close:
39.5 Rules of Sales Success Worth Pursuing
Whether you’re selling a product, service, or yourself, establishing a structured sales process will help you close more deals.
Jeffrey Gitomer, an American author, sales trainer, and motivational speaker, has delivered world-class sales advice to globally successful companies. Whether you’re new to sales or a seasoned pro, this 39.5-step process is an excellent roadmap for closing the deal.
1. Establish and maintain a positive attitude
This one’s a no-brainer. A positive outlook will take you far in sales (and in life). If you confront your prospects with a smile and an open mind, they’re more likely to respond positively.
2. Believe in yourself
Believe in what you’re selling in order to sell it effectively. This means being knowledgeable about your product and confident in your ability to sell it. If you go into a sales call with doubt, your prospect will pick up on it.
3. Set and reach your goals. Make a plan
To be successful in sales, you need to set goals and work toward them diligently. Without a plan, you will likely find yourself drifting aimlessly, which won’t lead to success. Be persistent in your efforts and always look for ways to improve.
4. Learn and apply the fundamentals of sales. Never stop learning how to sell
If doctors have to keep up with the latest medical advances, salespeople need to do the same with selling techniques. The fundamentals of sales don’t change much, but there are always new ways to navigate a sale. Be sure to stay current on the latest sales methods and apply them to your own selling style.
5. Understand the client and meet their needs
The key to selling anything is understanding the needs of your client. By listening to and understanding your audience, you can better tailor your pitch to meet their needs. This will result in more closed deals and a better sales relationship overall.
6. Sell to help
Your prospects can always tell when you’re trying to help them versus when you’re just trying to make a sale. Be sincere in your desire to meet their needs; they’ll be more likely to do business with you.
7. Establish long-term relationships
Focusing on the sale rather than consumer needs will only get you so far. To succeed in sales, you need to focus on developing long-term relationships with your clients. This means going above and beyond to be available to them, even if it doesn’t result in an immediate sale.
At Wizard of Sales®, we know that sales success is more than just a quick pitch. That’s why we focus on helping our clients build sales processes that nurture relationships and long-term success. If you’re ready to take your sales to the next level, book a demo with Ryan Chute at Wizard of Sales® today.
8. Believe in your company and your product
If you have little faith in the company or product you’re representing, it will show. To close more deals, you need to have complete confidence in what you’re offering. This means being knowledgeable about your product and being able to answer any questions a potential customer might have.
9. Be prepared
Nothing kills a sale faster than being unprepared. If you’re meeting with a client, ensure you know everything about their needs and what they’re looking for. The more you know about them and what you are selling, the better equipped you are to sell to them.
10. Be sincere
Let’s face it, no one likes to be sold to. When talking to a potential customer, be sincere and tell them you’re here to help them. Be genuine in your desire to see them succeed, and they’ll be more likely to do business with you.
11. Qualify the buyer. Do not waste time with someone who cannot decide
There is no sense in selling to a prospect who is not qualified to buy what you’re selling. Before you start selling to someone, ensure they have the budget, need and authority to make a purchasing decision.
12. Be on time for appointments
Sales success doesn’t just depend on what you do during the sales process but also on your professionalism and punctuality. If you’re meeting with a customer, ensure you are always on time and ready to discuss any questions they have.
13. Look professional
How you carry yourself affects you and the company you work for. By presenting yourself as a professional individual, you can create a positive image of yourself and your company.
14. Create rapport and trust
The relationship between you and the customer is one of the most critical aspects of the sales process. To succeed, it’s important to understand what your customer is feeling and how to respond to them.
15. Use humor
Humor is one of the best ways to build relationships and trust with potential consumers. By using humor, you can establish that you, too, are human and understand the customer’s perspective. Utilizing humor is also a great way to have fun while working!
16. Have a complete understanding of your product
You want to be able to sell your product to customers confidently. That being said, have a complete and updated understanding of every feature and benefit of what you’re selling. This way, when a customer has questions, you can give them an informed answer that builds trust.
17. Sell the benefits, not the features
While you may want to show off your extended knowledge of every feature your product has, sell the benefits instead. Your customer likely won’t care about the features unless they benefit from them. That being said, learn the benefits and use them often.
18. Tell the truth
Honesty is the best policy when it comes to making a sale. If you’re not honest about your product, the customer will likely find out and be less likely to buy from you. Furthermore, word of mouth is powerful, and dishonesty can reflect poorly on your business as a whole.
19. If you make a promise, keep it
Failure to deliver on a promise can be just as damaging as lying in the first place. In other words, if you tell your customer you will do something, do it. If not, you may damage your reputation as a salesperson indefinitely.
20. Don’t down the competition
Damaging the reputation of your competition is a surefire way to lose potential customers. Not only is it poor sportsmanship, but it also reflects poorly on you as a person. If you can’t sell your product without downing the competition, you may need to reflect on your sales process.
21. Use customer testimonials
One of the best ways to build trust with potential customers is to show them that others have succeeded. To do this, keep customer testimonials or success stories on hand to share with prospects.
22. Listen for buying signals
One of the most common mistakes salespeople make is assuming that a prospective customer isn’t interested in buying. However, prospects will often give you cues that suggest they are interested in making a purchase. Be sure to listen for these buying signals so you can close the sale.
23. Anticipate objections
It is uncommon for a prospect to have no objections whatsoever. In fact, it’s often a good sign if a prospect asks questions or raises concerns. The best way to deal with objections is to anticipate them before they happen. This way, you can address the objection head-on without being caught off-guard.
24. Dig to find the real objections
While consumers may offer an initial objection, it’s likely they aren’t telling the truth. Dig deeper to find the real objection so you can address it. Providing solutions to the initial objection will normally uncover another objection. Keep asking questions until you get to the heart of the matter.
25. Go beyond barriers. It’s not just an answer, it’s an understanding of the situation
Be flexible to help the customer in any way you can. In other words, don’t just offer one solution, be prepared with a few options. The solution you are initially selling may not be the one your customer needs. Be prepared to do the work for them so that they can decide.
26. Ask for the sale
It may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised how often salespeople forget to do this. After you’ve addressed all objections and the customer is ready to buy, ask for the sale. In fact, ask for it multiple times throughout your conversation. That “yes” may come quicker than you think.
27. When you ask a closing question, KEEP QUIET. This is the first rule of sales
If you find yourself constantly talking, you’re probably not giving the customer enough time to think about your offer. This can result in lost sales. Be prepared for silence and use it to your advantage.
28. If you do not make the sale, make an appointment to come back
If the customer doesn’t want to buy immediately, that’s OK. You can always try again later. The important thing is to make sure you leave with an appointment for a future meeting. This gives you another chance to restate your pitch and close the sale.
29. Persist, persist, persist. It takes up to 5 to 10 tries on a prospect before making the sale
If you’re having trouble closing a sale, don’t give up! Salespeople often give up after a few attempts, however, it takes most people multiple attempts to achieve sales success. Keep trying, and you’ll eventually succeed.
30. Redefine objections. They are not rejecting you; they are simply rejecting the offer you are making to them
Most people see objections as personal rejection, but they are simply rejecting your offer. If you can redefine objections this way, it will be much easier for you to handle them. Keep trying to close the sale until you are satisfied with the outcome.
31. Anticipate and be comfortable with change
Change isn’t always negative. In fact, change can be a great way to implement new ideas, structures, and information. Embrace change and be open to new possibilities.
32. Follow the rules. Sales representatives often think that the rules are made for others. But breaking the rules will just get you fired
Just because you are facilitating a transaction does not mean you can break the rules. There are laws and regulations in place for a reason. Don’t try to skirt around them to make a quick buck. Not only is it illegal, but it could also come back to bite you later on.
33. Get along with others (colleagues and clients). Selling is never a solitary job. Cooperate with your colleagues and partner with your clients
Selling is a team effort. You need to be able to work well with others to be successful. If you can’t get along with others, this is not your career.
34.Understand that hard work creates luck.
By working diligently and persistently, you create your luck. The more opportunities you create for yourself, the more likely one of them will pay off.
35. Do not blame others when the fault (or responsibility) belongs to you.
Taking responsibility for your actions shows that you are serious about your career. It also demonstrates that you are willing to take risks and put in the hard work required to sales success.
36. Use the power of persistence. Can you take a no for a challenge rather than a rejection?
Find ways to challenge yourself when it comes to sales success. In other words, when you are faced with an objection, use it as motivation to work harder and smarter. When you encounter a problem, discover how to solve it instead.
37. Find your success formula with numbers. Determine how many leads, interviews, proposals, appointments, presentations and follow-ups are needed to make a sale
By developing a success formula, you can calculate your success rate and increase your motivation to succeed. You can also use it to challenge yourself to improve your sales skills.
38. Do it passionately
Be passionate about your work and product. As a result, you will have a more confident approach to selling. When you are passionate about your work, staying motivated and focused on your goals will be easier. It will also show through to your potential customers, making them more likely to buy from you.
39. Be memorable. In a creative way. In a positive way. In a professional way.
If you’re dealing with a good prospect, chances are they are dealing with many salespeople. To stand out, you have to be different in a memorable and positive way. This can be done in several ways, such as being creative with your approach, being friendly and personable, and more. Find what approach works best for you and use it to your advantage.
39.5. Have fun! This is the most important rule of all
While fun likely isn’t in your job description, having fun while you work can make you more productive. If you enjoy what you’re doing, it will show in your career and attitude, which can be contagious for prospects.
At Wizard of Sales®, we believe that having a successful sales process begins with you. By investing in yourself, your knowledge, and your skills, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a top sales performer.
Our number one priority is to help our clients increase their sales and, in turn, their success. To learn and establish a unique sales process that closes more deals, our experienced sales experts are here to help. Book a demo with Ryan Chute at Wizard of Sales® today to learn more.