Sales Techniques That Work

Joe Weinlick
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Every salesperson wants tips, tricks and gimmicks to get ahead in the game, earn the big sale and out-do the competition. One way to accomplish these goals starts with looking at marketing statistics and then refining your sales techniques to match the reality of contemporary sales.

Career Addict notes 18 percent of sales fail in the final step of the process, and companies typically lose 10 to 30 percent of their clients per year. On the upside, firms earn 80 percent of revenue due to the sales department, and 47 percent of customers buy something even if a company's sales techniques are horrible. Timing is everything since 63 percent of consumers buy something three months after an initial request for information and 20 percent of people take a year to decide after first contact. As many as 91 percent of worldwide sales are made by phone, and 98 percent of sales occur only after a customer trusts a company.

These marketing statistics tell a very important story. The overall picture shows that sales techniques do not have to land a sale on the first try, in the initial cold call or with the first line of contact. Since consumers can take at least three months before buying, a sales team has time to earn trust and determine what the final step of the sales process looks like with a particular client.

Several sales techniques can help win over these all-important customers, so they come back to your firm. Companies should hire people who believe in the products or services they sell since it makes sales pitches much more genuine. Firms need to show a return on investment for training, conferences and product demonstrations. Salespeople must make personal connections with clients because this helps win their trust. For example, if someone on the sales team has kids and the client has children, logic dictates that person can relate to customers with similar life circumstances.

Teams should collaborate with prospects to achieve mutual goals. Salespeople bring value to customers beyond just the material gain or money spent. Marketers must listen to their customers, or they may miss very important details.

At the same time, silence can be a powerful tool when someone makes a sales pitch. Pause at the right places to listen to customer feedback, concerns or questions. Silence allows everyone in the room to think for a moment before proceeding, and it presents a way for clients to say "yes" without having to talk over someone's verbal sales techniques.

Sometimes the best policy is to wait patiently. It takes an average of seven times to get a sales lead to agree to an in-person meeting, even after using several sales techniques and media types to nail down an appointment. Salespeople should not rush the process because earning someone's trust and respect takes time.

Photo courtesy of Tim Parkinson at



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