Sales Process – How to Overcome Sales Objections
by Alan Rigg
If you have been in sales for any period of time you have run into sales objections. Objections are what happen when you ask a prospect for an order and the prospect responds with anything other than “Yes.”
My experience has been that most objections arise because a salesperson hasn’t done a thorough enough job of sales opportunity qualification.
NOTE: For more information on the topic of sales opportunity qualification, read The Secret to Closing More Sales and How to Avoid Wasting Time on Prospects Who Can’t or Won’t Buy.
How do you become expert at sales opportunity qualification?
If you do a great job of answering the following questions and build the answers into your everyday sales approach, you will consistently do a superior job of sales opportunity qualification…and thereby receive fewer objections!
Which business problems do your products and services solve?
Does your prospect have any of these business problems?
What is the impact of these business problems on your prospect, both professionally and personally?
How significant is the impact?
Is the impact significant enough to enable the prospect to justify making an investment to make the impact “go away”?
Can the prospect quantify (i.e., attach dollar figures to) the impact of their business problems?
How does this quantified impact compare to the cost of your products or services?
Does the prospect understand exactly how your products or services will make their business problems “go away”?
What else can you do to overcome objections?
1. BRAINSTORM objections
Sit down with your sales manager and the other members of your sales team and do some brainstorming. Write down every objection that any of you can remember, then work together to develop an effective response for each objection.
2. DOCUMENT objections and responses
Put the results of your brainstorming session into a document and make it a “living document” (which means the document should receive frequent updates over time). When any of your company’s salespeople hear an objection that is not listed in the document, add it to the document. Bring up these new objections in your sales meetings, discuss the best way(s) to respond to the objections, then add the responses to the document as well.
3. PRACTICE responding to rejections
You and your fellow sales team members should hold each other ACCOUNTABLE for learning EVERY objection and how to respond to the objection effectively. Get in the habit of giving each other “pop quizzes” where you spontaneously suggests objections to each other and practice providing effective responses to the objections. Over time you will learn how to respond to each objection in a manner that is comfortable and natural for you. You will also learn where the gaps are in your sales opportunity qualification processes that cause prospects to raise objections in the first place!
4. PROACTIVELY address objections
If one or more objections come up frequently when you and your fellow salespeople work with prospects, figure out how to proactively address these objections during your sales calls. In other words, you should bring up the objections yourselves and respond to them rather than waiting for your prospects to raise them.
If you learn 1) how to do a great job of sales opportunity qualification, and 2) how to respond to objections effectively, you should dramatically improve your close ratio and your overall sales performance!
©2006 – Alan Rigg
About the Author
Sales performance expert Alan Rigg is the author of How to Beat the 80/20 Rule in Selling: Why Most Salespeople Don’t Perform and What to Do About It. His company, 80/20 Sales Performance, helps business owners, executives, and managers end the frustration of 80/20 sales team performance, where 20% of salespeople produce 80% of sales. For more information and more FREE sales and sales management tips, visit http://www.8020salesperformance.com.
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