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  • Writer's pictureGary Kieper

Ask This One Question to Significantly Reduce Objections When it’s Time to Close the Sale

One of the biggest complaints I hear from business owners and their sales teams is that when it comes time to close the sale, they learn that the incumbent far too often gets the last look at the proposal and many times either matches the price or beats it by just enough to retain the business. If this has ever happened to you, you understand how frustrating it can be and you’re not alone. After all, how can the incumbent keep the business after you’ve uncovered problems existing in the current plan, put in place some much needed improvements, and provided a proposal that is all-star worthy and priced competitively? The answer is you probably didn’t ask this one all important question early on in the process. The next time you are meeting with a prospect, paint a scenario of what your sales process looks like. Insert all of the details involved and let them know how much work you plan on putting into their situation. Then ask, “During the process, if I uncover areas where I can improve your situation and I am competitively priced, is there anything that would prevent us from doing business together?” This is a great question and should let you know how strong the relationship is with the incumbent or if the prospect is meeting with any of your competitors. If they answer with a no, you are in great shape. When it comes time to close, paraphrase your process again and let them know you have good news because you have improved their situation and you’re ready to start working together today! If they tell you they are shopping or that they’ve had a long relationship with the incumbent, you’re better off knowing up front and early. A great follow up question then is, “What exactly is the criteria you will be using to make your final decision?” This may not work 100% of the time, but it will improve your closing percentages greatly. If you’d like an example on how this might sound in your specific industry, send me an email or give me a call. I’m more than willing to help.

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