There has been so much published about “closing the sale.” Specifically, about WHEN to close the sale. I don’t even use that term anymore because its name alone gives the wrong impression about how it’s done! “Close” gives the impression that it’s conducted at the end of the sales process. When really, closing the sale starts at the very beginning and is conducted all the way through the sales process.
Periodically, through the sales process, the seller should be asking the prospect “commitment questions.” Questions that get the client to make agreements of sorts. Small agreements made throughout the sales process will inevitably give you a faster closing cycle.
Here are the different types of commitments or agreements you should be asking for:
- The Needs Commitment. “Can we both agree that you need to solve “x” problem in the future?”
- The Decision Commitment: “On what criteria will you be making your decision?”
- The Company Commitment: “Do you agree that my company provides a superior product to others you’ve seen?”
- The Product Commitment: “Do you feel that our product is the best in class and value?”
Clearly you can’t and shouldn’t wait until the end to start having these conversations. NOT getting an agreement on any one of those questions alerts you to where you have to focus your efforts.