As a sales professional with any level of experience, there are several mistakes that, once made, turn even a promising sale into an uphill climb. These seven deadly sins of sales are easy to make, even by an experienced professional, so recognizing the sins and planning how to avoid them in your next meeting will be critical for success.
To help sales professionals, here are the seven deadly sins of sales and how they impact the customer and their willingness to make a commitment to a sale.
1. Wasting the customer’s time – small talk, repetition, redundancy and “fluff” in the conversation is going to turn off prospective buyers, particularly if you are selling into the C-suite. Keep the sales pitch streamlined and specific to avoid this sin.
2. Not being fully prepared – there is no excuse today with information readily available online and in social media to not be prepared for your customer, the business, and trends in their industry. Of course, you also need to know your product.
3. Telling rather than selling – selling is about filling a need, solving a problem and creating a benefit in the mind of the customer. Just reciting facts and numbers won’t accomplish this goal.
4. Personal accountability – take the time to review your sales process and know what you are going to do in the sales meeting. Be accountable to yourself for setting goals and achieving them.
5. Lose faster (Get to next) – don’t dwell on a point once it is made. Engage the customer or client, explore the possibilities of the product or service as a solution and move on to the next part of the process. Bogging down will lose momentum and interest.
6. Don’t internalize rejection – avoid feeling personally rejected with a “no.” Instead, look towards the next meeting and plan for a new, creative approach to working with that client based on new information gleaned from this meeting.
7. Close at every customer touch point – don’t wait until the end to close an order. Close and confirm on all points of agreement as they occur in the meeting and the conversation.
Another key factor to remember is that listening is a critical part of sales. By listening to the customer, you will gain insight into their needs and problems, helping you to avoid several of these deadly sins.
by Carpe Diem!