The popular sales theory of “always be closing” (ABC) is fading quickly. It is a theory that once made up the very foundation that salespeople stood upon, but closing sales has a completely different meaning in the modern business world. In the past, it was the responsibility of a sales representative to educate customers and teach them the ins and outs of products. Today, the customer is often self-educated and already knows what he or she wants. The sales person must rely on the customer to indicate what they want to be taught and told.
This gives a new twist to that age old sales philosophy of “always be closing.” It’s no longer necessary to supply a long list of detailed information to a customer. Listening has become more critical than talking when closing sales. This is just one little change that is challenging the “always be closing” philosophy. Here are some important new factors to consider when it comes to closing sales:
Speed is the key.
With the fast pace of life and the many ways in which technology simplifies things, customers are looking for a quick approach to sales. This means a more aggressive style and making products readily available so they do not have to wait. Whether it’s the speed your company website loads or the strategic location of items on the sales floor, speed is a key factor that will contribute to closing sales in the modern day. Whatever you can do to make your sales team faster and more efficient is positive and will help with closing sales.
Knowledge flows freely.
Chances are that a customer has already explored the product he is looking for before setting foot in your store. Computers and the internet make it possible for the average person to gather a wealth of information and make an educated purchase on their own. This means that salespeople should be looking for clues as to what the customer doesn’t know already. It’s easy to find this out by asking targeted questions. Have you considered the differences between LCD and plasma screens yet? Do you know what the top brand names in the industry are? What kind of protection are you looking for in terms of warranties or add-on agreements? Questions like these will allow the customer to showcase their knowledge, while opening doors for salespeople to provide insight and education.
Appearances can be deceptive.
Don’t make assumptions about the customers with whom you come into contact. The casual browser might turn into a lucrative customer in a moment’s notice. Be open and receptive to information, and create opportunities for the sharing of knowledge and ideas on the sales floor.
In summary, “always be closing” is still applicable on the sales floor; it just needs a fresh new approach to keep up with changes in the world. Sales techniques have to change with the times. Closing sales is still critical to business functions, but the approach to making that solid deal needs modification in order to be successful.