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When Do You Lose Customer Trust?
Blog / For Sales Pros / May 19, 2018 / Posted by Shawn Karol Sandy / 4968

When Do You Lose Customer Trust?


Have you ever started talking to someone and then a “look” comes over them?

They pull back a little, maybe cross their arms or turn their body away from you.

You’ve just lost their trust.

What was it you said or did that triggered their distrust response? It could be something you’re doing or saying over and over again in your sales process.

Buyers can completely shut down if you cross that “trip wire” and activate thoughts of negative experiences. You may not even know you’re doing it.

We all wear our buyer hats and have had these experiences so I wanted to know what specifically elicits feelings of “distrust.”

We sent out a poll asking our audience or entrepreneurs, business owners, and professionals, “What do salespeople do that trigger your ‘distrust’ feelings?”

In their own words, here’s what buyers said elicits those negative reactions.

“When a salesperson says, ‘Well, this is the best offer you’ll get.’ Or ‘This is really what you need.’ Most of the time, I feel like they are incentivized for selling a particular product instead of learning what I actually need or want. This just happened with car insurance!”

“When they say, ‘I’ll match any price’, I think, Why not give me your best price right from the start?”

“I’ve had a salesperson constantly call and email me. I finally agree to a face to face meeting and they can’t remember my name. If my business is important enough to bombard me with emails and phone calls until I meet with you, then it should be important enough to remember my name when we meet!”

“I hate it when they try to make you feel like you’re getting something for nothing. Big red flag. Just tell me the value and let me decide if I want to buy.”

“We had a guy cold call us recently. My admin answered on speaker and I could hear him but he didn’t know that. He was rude and pushy to the person he assumed was ‘just answering the phone’ and tried to bully her into putting me on the phone saying, ‘just put the owner on the phone, I need to speak with her now.’ Rude and pushy . . . that’s just not going to get you anywhere.”

“I don’t trust salespeople that do not have the facts or can’t admit when they don’t have the answers. They hem and haw when you are looking for information to make a decision.”

“When they say ‘to be honest with you’ I immediately put my guard up.”

“When the ‘this solution is personalized to your needs’ email shows the 200 other contacts the email was also sent to. Yeah, I feel really special then.”

“It’s obvious when I’m talking and they are just waiting to reply. They’re not actually listening.”

“They lose my trust by assuming I have the same goals/needs/business plan as everyone else in the same industry.”

“The minute they bust out ‘I feel,’ ‘I felt,’ or ‘I’ve found,” I know I’m being led where they want me – not necessarily what is best for me.”

“When I was bridal gown shopping, decades ago, a sales lady at a well-known shop started in with probing questions about my parents and their jobs before ever attempting to get to know me or what I was looking for. It was so obvious that she only cared about the amount of commission she was going to make off of my dress. I happened to find a dress I liked there but ended up having it ordered from another shop who was much more interested in helping me than selling. Therefore, that business ended up with my entire wedding, and it was fabulous!”

Wasted time. Self-serving interests. Rude and pushy behavior. Not being upfront . . . are these intentional tactics, or oblivious blunders?

What language are you using that could be setting off alarm bells with your customers?

Do you have habits that create feelings of distrust?

Avoid clichés and sales jargon and ditch any of those lame “closing techniques” and improve your skills to bring customers closer.

One way to understand how your customers might feel is to ask for the opportunity to discuss when you don’t earn the business. If you’ve created good rapport, many buyers will talk with you. Make sure they understand this isn’t about price disclosures. Walk through the sales process and ask if there is anything that stands out. You’ll never learn if you’re doing something to push buyers off if you don’t ask for feedback.

Until next time, stop hoping, start SELLING!


Pipeliner CRM empowers salespeople to create trust. Get your free trial of Pipeliner CRM now.


About Author

Shawn founded The Selling Agency after a successful sales career working on building solutions for Small Businesses. Shawn's titles include: Market Director, Sales Director, Marketing Director, Development Director, and Entrepreneur. She focuses on organizational selling and strategies.


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