Towards the end of the sales process, there’s often a moment when a deal hangs in the balance.
Even if your product is a match made in heaven for the prospective client, it doesn’t take much to stop a deal from happening — a delayed response, focusing on the wrong features, or misunderstanding the client’s use case. Seemingly minor missteps like these can often stop your sales team from closing deals.
To top things off, your sales reps can do nothing blatantly wrong and still have a poor closing rate. Getting prospective clients from “interested” to actually signing on that dotted line is a delicate process.
So how do experienced sales teams avoid these hiccups? They create a closing system using proven tactics and techniques that help overcome a buyer’s doubts and get that signature.
In this article, we’ll share our recommended closing strategies and techniques based on advice from reputed sales experts, and also explore exactly what your team needs to do before initiating a closing conversation.
Closing doesn’t happen in a vacuum. It doesn’t matter how effective your closing system is if your sales team can’t properly coax prospects down the sales funnel until they’re actually convinced your product is a good match.
To set yourself up for success from the start, understand your prospects, and follow sales strategies that’ll help you cater to their needs and wants.
If your client doesn’t 100% believe that your product or service will help them solve a real problem, you might as well give up. There’s no point in introducing urgency, offering a “final” discount offer, or using any other closing tactic. All appeals will fall on deaf ears.
Effective closing starts with effective, personalized selling. Make sure your sales reps embody the consultative sales technique.
Your sales reps should always:
If your best sales reps already do it effectively, but most of your sales team struggle with this, try developing a sales enablement program. By leveraging sales enablement software, you can more effectively train new sales reps in your overall sales strategy, techniques, and tactics.
Also, if you use automated lead nurturing (like TigerLRM’s auto follow-ups) make sure to leverage segmentation to personalize your messaging. This helps you deliver targeted content that addresses each lead’s specific challenges.
It doesn’t matter if you convince a tech-loving software engineer or a single sales rep that your product is great — you need to convince the actual decision-makers that have the power to sign a lucrative deal with your company.
Here’s a simplified version of how your sales reps can do this:
It’s a lot easier to get your entire sales team to do this consistently with your sales playbook, pitch decks, case studies, and even video tutorials baked into the CRM they use. With TigerLRM’s CRM with robust sales enablement features, you can set all of this up in a few clicks, without having to integrate multiple solutions or do any custom coding.
Your reps can easily store and update contact information, record important notes, and track interactions. Plus, you can train them on exactly how to sell effectively according to your ideal best practices from within the CRM.
The assigned sales rep isn’t always the perfect match for a client. By fostering a culture of team collaboration (rather than a typical “lone shark” attitude), you can near guarantee a better experience for the majority of your prospects.
One way to create a foundation for better communication in your team is to get everyone working and talking on the same platform.
For example, TigerLRM's collaboration tools can help your team act as a cohesive unit across locations (or even with remote team members). Everyone in the sales process stays up to date on prospect details; they can even access this data from their phones if needed.
And if a particular rep has an in with a potential client, or simply more experience in that vertical, a rep can quickly get the help they need to make the necessary adjustments to their pitch and approach.
If you follow these three simple (but not easy) strategies, your sales reps are in a much better position when they initiate the closing process. A prospect who truly feels your product is the best solution for their company is much easier to close than someone who views your product as just one option among many. (It also means you don’t have to compete on price to be the cheapest option.)
Now that you’ve set the stage properly, with sales reps using a personalized, consultative sales process to nurture pre-qualified leads, it’s time to work on the actual closing.
The first step is to examine how much room your sales reps have to improve. The average closing rate in the software industry in 2022 was 22%. Find relevant data for your industry, and use it to benchmark your progress.
Before we get into specific closing techniques, and exact word-for-word questions your sales reps can start using today, you need to ensure that your sales reps have the right foundation.
Instill the five principles of closing into your sales team, and they’ll consistently do a good job, regardless of the sales closing technique they choose.
If your team follows these principles, they'll consistently convince potential customers to sign on that dotted line.
Below, we share some of our favorite closing techniques (and actual questions and scripts) that your sales reps can start using today.
This is a universal closer used by sales professionals in virtually every industry. Here are a few example closing phrases that do this well:
It works because it helps to get the deal closed right now, instead of slipping into becoming only a forgotten memory in the prospect’s mind.
Help the prospect internalize the benefits that you covered in the sales conversation by summarizing them. For example:
Focus on how your product solves their problems.
If the client isn’t jumping at a deal, it’s important to find out exactly what’s holding them back. Ask questions like:
And if your sales reps have done their research, they should already have the perfect response to the answers they’ll get.
The sharp angle close is a way to turn a client's objection into an opportunity for closing the deal. If they ask for specific features or extra up-front work (that you don’t typically do), you say you’ll accommodate them as long as they sign the deal right now.
Another approach that is gaining popularity in this noisy modern world of sales, is to take the pressure off your potential clients.
Josh Braun, former head of sales at Basecamp, is a big believer in reducing sales pressure with a more prospect-driven sales and closing process.
He recommends sales reps use phrases like: “There’s no rush or obligation. We can proceed at your pace.”
The goal is to establish more trust with the client, get to the core of their problems, and together, figure out how your product/service fits into that picture.
Just like its adorable nickname indicates, this sales closing technique is another soft approach. It involves giving the prospect a free trial of your product or service. The idea is that the product itself will enchant the prospect enough to make the purchase, like a family friend who you convinced to “watch” a puppy from your dog’s litter for a week.
It also goes by another (more boring) name, the test drive close, which is self-explanatory.
With the ownership close, you proceed with the conversation as if they’ve already agreed to purchase your product, and try to paint a vivid picture of what this potential future looks like.
Effectively closing deals is a complicated process that means revamping not just the last two minutes of your reps’ sales calls, but the entire process leading up to that stage. You not only need to figure out what works for which types of clients, but train your whole team to use that new approach. And once you start closing — keep closing! It is tempting to want to revert back to the pitch to help the client in the decision making process but if you do that, you’ve lost. Once you enter the closing phase do not go back.
How can you do this effectively at scale? One option is to use TigerLRM’s CRM, which has robust sales enablement features built in. With a few clicks, you can create a sales playbook and media center that any sales rep can access from anywhere, at any time. Sign up for free today to see how TigerLRM can help transform your sales team’s performance.
To assign a sales enablement user, simply go to Administrator > User Management > Edit User.
Once you are on the user's information, you can select if you want them to be "Non-Admin," "Admin," or part of the "Enablement Team." Save this information, and your desired user will have the right access.You can access your Dashboard here.