Sales Excellence - How to become a Great Salesperson
How to Be a Great Salesman
Sales is an art. Part assertive, part passive, if you balance the persuasion and charisma of a great salesperson, you'll be able to sell ketchup popsicles to a woman in white gloves on the 4th of July (although something slightly more practical is recommended). Read on to discover how to cultivate trustworthiness, an assertive presence, and an optimistic outlook on your sales.
Put the customer first.You can't sell anyone anything if they don't trust you. Convincing someone that they need something you're selling requires that you balance sincerity with your desire to make the sale, being assertive, firm, and honest. If they don't trust you, they're less willing to make an intelligent buying decision.
Empathize.Find out what your customer really wants and why they want it. People buy "things" as a means to an end. Understanding your customer's desires and adopting them yourself will make you a great salesman.
- Allow your customer to lead interactions, and ask questions to determine their desires. If a customer says they want a suit, ask "What's the occasion?" Selling a suit to someone going to a funeral is a lot different than selling to someone who is celebrating a recent promotion.
- If a customer expresses interest in a particular item, ask what it is they like about it. Allow them to choose the product that they feel good about, getting to know your customer and their taste, and uncovering their real motivation for buying.
Be an expert in your field.Know everything there is to know about your product, and your competitors products, so that you can justify to your customer why your recommended product is the right one for them.
- If you're selling basketball shoes, learn which players wear what shoes, what styles are collectible, and some of the history of the shoes. Likewise, learn all the technical details about sizing, comfort, and care for the product.
Follow up.If you really want to be a great salesman, go the extra mile. Write down the names and contact info of your customers, and follow up with a brief call or note to make sure they are 100% happy with their purchase. This is how you turn customers into raving fans who will return to you in the future. This is how you get referrals from your customers, and promotions from your employer.
Look the part.There's no particular style--a car salesman will probably dress somewhat differently than a salesperson at a guitar shop--but you need to figure out how to look as appropriate and approachable as possible. Be clean, appropriately groomed, and friendly.
Part 1 Quiz
Which is the most important reason to ask the customer questions while they are shopping?
Anticipate objections.Pay close attention to your customers reactions. Facial expressions and body language can be a big "tell" in the customer's attitude. As you pitch the product to them, remember that you are there to sell whatever is going to make the customer feel really good about their purchase. Guessing what part of the product or price the customer is objecting to will help you respond tactfully and persuasively.
- If a particular product seems to turn off a customer, acknowledge it rather than starting to argue for the product. You might objectively name some of its merits while justifying the customer's hesitation: "It is more expensive than the others, you're right. The hand-stitching takes a lot more time to complete, but it results in much more durable shoe."
Be logical.If you're working on commission, it can be tempting to always up-sell or try to get customers interested in the most expensive items. But trying to up-sell a big screen plasma TV to someone living in a dorm room that isn't big enough for it is likely to put your customer off of your sales style. Balance your desire to make a sale with what product makes sense for the customer.
Ask for the sale.If the customer is having a difficult time making the decision, it's ok to do a little pushing. Trust that you have suggested the best item and ask something like "Would you like me to bring this up to the check out stand for you while you continue your shopping?"
Increase your units per transaction.After you confirm a sale, make the case for add-ons to up your total sales. If you've just sold a printer, mention some deals you're running on ink cartridges or reams of paper. Frame it as a money and stress-saving measure for them: "You'll need these eventually and this way you won't have to worry about it."
Part 2 Quiz
Why might you encourage a customer to purchase a less expensive product?
Forget bad sales.Spending lots of time on a sale that falls through can be frustrating and discouraging, but learning to put bad sales behind you and quickly approach new opportunities afresh is the best way to become a more successful salesperson.
- Treat each failed sale as practice. What did you learn from it?
Stay focused on your own sales.Some workplaces try to stimulate sales by encouraging competition among the sales staff, posting numbers for the week or the month.While this can be a friendly way of selling enthusiastically, it can also be discouraging if you constantly compare yourself to other salespeople.
- Celebrate if you do sell a lot, but don't make that your goal. Treat work as work. Fill your free time with other hobbies to avoid dwelling on making sales.
Keep busy.The more sales you attempt, the easier it will go. It'll be much easier to get past small failures and little setbacks and will keep you honing your craft. If you're making calls or roving the sales floor, the day will likewise go a lot faster the more time you spend selling.
Blame nobody.Whatever happens, avoid placing blame anywhere. It's ultimately the customer's decision whether or not to buy something, so don't treat it as a failure on your part if they choose not to. Think of yourself as a counsellor in a transaction. Make your suggestions, be as helpful as possible, and move on when the deal is done, successful or not.
Part 3 Quiz
What is the best way to move past a failed sales attempt?
QuestionWhat should a salesperson keep in mind before going to assist a customer?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerAlways be positive and polite and listen to the customer's needs. You won't know what the customer needs until they tell you. Try to create a solution for what they need. Even if it doesn't work out, always stay positive.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I overcome shyness with customers?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerLearn about the products you are selling. As much as you can. If you feel like you have full product knowledge and can answer any of your customers' questions, you start to feel confident, and over time the shyness goes away.Thanks!
QuestionHow should I respond when a competitor offers a cheaper price for the same product?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerPosition things other than the price of the product. Get their mind off the price and focus on the things that you do better than your competitor. It could be free delivery, in-home service, better reliability, and other such things. You have to have something that sets your business apart, otherwise it wouldn't be in business.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I interact with angry customers?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerI love an angry customer! Now you can work your skills! Bruce Lee said it, "flow like water." Go in that direction, say "Oh absolutely, that's not acceptable!" Empathize, listen intently, maybe offer another related incident you heard from a previous customer. They need to vent and be heard. Apologize, talk about it, then work in a new or different product that can solve their problem. Be confident and sincere and the customer will end up grateful for your help.Thanks!
QuestionHow can I improve my sales power?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerKnowledge about your product and self-confidence will greatly improve your salesmanship.Thanks!
QuestionHow can I be a good dress salesman?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerDress to impress. Dress like you're going to a casual wedding. Nothing over the top, but not a t-shirt and jeans, either. Make sure there are no holes or buttons missing. Nice dress shows.Thanks!
QuestionHow can I be more persuasive?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIf it's in real life, be serious and don't go off topic. If someone doesn't listen, ask what their concerns are and then refute them the best you can. If you're primarily asking about the field of business, find out what people care about and find a way to relate it back to your product.Thanks!
QuestionHow can I convince someone to buy an inferior product that's expensive?Dan KabasaCommunity AnswerStart by introducing the product to the client and showing the client the advantages of the product you are selling over other competing products in the market.Thanks!
QuestionHow can I convince a customer to buy a designer dress?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerAsk them about the occasion. Depending on their answer, pick a variety of dresses that would fit for that occasion, or a lot of occasions. Make sure you are completely educated about the product so you can talk about the advantages and why it's better than other dresses. Designer Dresses cost a lot of money, so the customer may take some time to decide, be patient.Thanks!
QuestionWhat can I do if a customer in my jewellery shop is not making eye contact and not comfortable with me?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIn a jewellery shop, that could signal that the customer is uncomfortable about spending a lot. The customer may feel embarrassed or even ashamed that they have to buy on a budget in a store known for extravagant prices. Try to make the person feel at ease by talking up the lower priced lines without blinking an eye; after all, a sale is better than no sale, so don't be snobby. It could also mean they are scouting out the store for a robbery; use your intuition on that one.Thanks!
How do I become a better jewelry salesman?
How can I make a career as a bus tours salesman?
How do I make a sales pitch?
How do I sell micro-finance loans?
How do I become a good salesman to convince the hardware retailers.?
- Always remember, you are here toserveandhelpyour customer.
- Always be a person of integrity, because they will be able to see if you are not.
- Tailor your pitch to the customer. People like different things -- all the bells and whistles are just noise unless they're ringing their tune.
- Listen to everything your customer says carefully, and listen to exactly how they say it. This is your firepower when presenting the product as a solution, and you want to present the solution back to them the same way they presented the need to you.
- Always try to close. If you never ask, you'll never get the sale. Try to find common ground with the customer to create rapport (e.g. sports, family, school).
- Don't rush them, many do and it annoys the customer
- A good salesman or person should have a good sense of humor and see your customers as family. Learning to build a business bond can also tends to help in boosting your sales.
Sources and Citations
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