Closing is the final part of the sales process, and involves summary, discussion and agreement of the outcomes of the sale. It’s arguably the most important step in the overall sales process, as it makes it clear to the customer that their requirements have been understood, and outlines how their desired outcomes will be achieved.
Throughout the process of the sales, the customer will have been educated on the products, solutions, and services that are available to them. Following this, the customer is then left to decide whether or not the offered solution fits within their budget, will meet their needs, and ultimately provide their desired outcome. The closing process is where you bring all of the pieces of the solve together, ensuring that the customer is comfortable and confident in their decision making.
Closing is usually the culmination of several weeks or months of relationship-building, discovery, objection handling and negotiation. This means that the customer is expecting resolution and tangible solutions to the problem they are trying to solve.
Here are the general guidelines and best practices when closing a sale:
1. Always be positive and enthusiastic with prospects.
The closing process should be positive, with a great deal of enthusiasm. The customer should be leaving the conversation feeling a sense of excitement about the product, solution, or service that they’ve chosen. As a result, by the time the customer reaches this stage, the sales rep should be confident and able to communicate the value of the offer.
2. Prepare for closing.
The initial conversation conversation should outline the steps that need to take place in order to conclude the sale. A good sales rep will know that different customers require different approaches and levels of education and preparation in order to close a sale. When preparing for the closing process, the sales rep should have access to all of the necessary resources and tools needed to be successful, such as scripts and presentations.
3. Know the buying process.
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In order to close a sale, it’s important to understand how the buying process works. What are the different steps in the customer’s decision-making process? How can the customer be helped through their decision-making process? Knowing the answers to these questions can help to form the basis of the closing process.
4. Listen to the customer.
The sales rep should be listening intently to the customer throughout the closing process. This means that any objections, hesitations, and questions raised by the customer must be identified and addressed quickly and efficiently. Good listening skills will allow the sales rep to pick up on subtle hints from the customer that may indicate their leanings towards a particular solution, and will also provide insight into what motivates them.
5. Address any objections.
The goal of the closing process is to address any objections that the customer may have. These objections may be technical, commercial, financial, or ethical. The sales rep should be prepared to answer questions promptly, and ensure that the customer leaves the conversation with a sense of security and agreement on the proposed solution.
6. Focus on the customer’s desired outcome.
Throughout the sales cycle, it’s important to remember that the customer is looking to achieve their desired outcome. This outcome may be a cost saving, an increase in efficiency, or a solution for a specific problem. Whatever the outcome is, the sales rep should make sure that the closing conversation focuses on how the proposed solution will provide this outcome for the customer.
7. Follow up.
Once the sales cycle has finished, it is important to follow up with the customer. This ensures that the customer has received any necessary documentation, payment plans are being adhered to, and that the customer is overall satisfied with the concluded agreement. The sales rep should also use this as an opportunity to start building a more in-depth, longer-term relationship.