3 essential tips on how to close a deal

By: Alisha Webb

Date: 24 January 2013

3 Essential tips on how to close a deal/shaking hands{{}}Negotiators tend to get stuck when it comes time to close a deal when they keep hearing "no". There are some simple tricks you can learn to help increase your closing rate. Here are three tips that will turn that "no" into a "yes".

Start with a Close, end with a Close

From the moment you meet your potential customer think about how you are going to close the deal. Always greet them with a smile and form a relationship. People will rarely sign a deal with someone they don't like or respect. Ask as many questions as possible about the problems they are having that your product or service may resolve. This is not when you start selling, it’s simply asking questions and listening to the answers. Gather as much information as possible so that during your presentation you can sell directly to the problems they’re experiencing.

Your presentation is where the selling takes place and it should be the only time you’re in sales mode. Your presentation should be a little different every time, since you want it to be tailored to each individual client's problems. During your presentation, point out every resolution to the problems they explained earlier. The presentation should be enthusiastic and hold their attention. If there is more than one person in the room, talk to everyone as a group.

Once the presentation is done, your selling is done. This is where you sit back as calmly as possible and listen to reactions. You should become very consultative when answering any additional questions or concerns at this time.

The Mini Pre-Close

During your presentation, as you’re selling to the customer’s concerns, squeeze in as many mini pre-closes as possible. The more times they say yes to a small question the more likely they will say yes to the big question. This puts them in a habit of saying "yes" instead of that dreaded "no". The best way to do this is after you make a point about one of the problems that your product or service can resolve simply ask, "This solves your problem, right?" As you ask this question nod your head and chances are they will agree with you.

After completing your presentation repeat this process one more time before you sit back and listen to responses. Do this by simply asking all of the same questions again. This may seem repetitive, but this is just giving the customer time to realise how wonderful your product or service is.

Get them emotional

Once your presentation is complete and you’ve answered any additional questions or concerns now it is time to “ask” for the deal. This is the most common mistake ever made - people don't ask for the deal. Be assertive and ask as if you assume they will say "yes" (commonly known as an assumptive close).

You might have to do a little more work at this point. This is where you need to get them back into the emotional state of mind. People buy for emotional reasons, not logical reasons. Studies show that pictures help to put people into an emotional state. You can achieve this by drawing a simple picture, maybe a graph showing statistics or a picture of your product – it doesn't have to be fancy.

Another easy way to get someone in the emotional state of mind is to talk into their left ear. This triggers the right side of the brain, which is the emotional side. So be sure to be seated on the left hand side of the decision-maker in the room. 

Supplied by negotiation experts The Gap Partnership US.

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