When people first think of selling, they get an unsatisfactory image of a car salesman. However, selling represents a critical business growth strategy that keeps businesses alive, keeps revenue coming in, and pays bills. So everybody to some extent depends on businesses performing good selling.
A customer also needs a reason to buy. He needs to be told that the product or service solves his problem and does so effectively. To effect a good business growth strategy via sales, a business needs to practice ten rules regularly:
- Know your product and industry – Consumers aren’t stupid. They can sense quickly when a person is selling something they know nothing about. If it means taking some time to do research and understand the nuances of a product and its industry, do so.
- Stop acting – too often businesses starting out in sales believe they have to give off a different perception than they actually represent. Being honest and forthright makes a huge difference in winning a customer’s trust. They know who they’re dealing with, they feel comfortable working with an honest business, and they trust the sale will provide what’s promised.
- Persistence wins – sales don’t happen automatically. A business has to work at them and be persistent, even if told “no” the first time. Sometimes customers want to see if a business really wants their order or not.
- Concise messaging – Along with being knowledgeable above a business also needs to sell with concise messaging. People don’t have all day to listen to a sales pitch. Get to the point with enough detail to explain the product or service, but don’t bore them to death.
- Help solve problems – Many customers don’t buy product just because it looks a certain color. They buy because they need a solution to a need or problem. Connect the product or service to the problem and it will win over customers immediately.
- Respect – customers have their own mind, experience, background and skill. Businesses need to be respectful of these factors rather than insulting or dismissive. Nothing turns off a customer faster than a salesperson who comes across as a know-it-all.
- Be available – when customers are ready to buy, they do it on their time, not the business. Those salespeople who are available win the deals because they make it convenient for the customer to buy on his time.
- Face rejection bravely – if a business got stumped every time it was rejected, there would be no industries. Rejection happens and happens a lot. Businesses need to be strong in the face of “no” and pick up to do it all over again.
- Learn quickly how to listen – Many customers want to explain what their problem is. Unfortunately, business salespeople are too busy trying to sell to take the time to listen and see their opening right in front of them. By listening, a lot of work can be avoided simply connecting on a personal level with customers.
- Follow up – once the sales is done, too many businesses move onto the next customer. Following up with an existing customer can solve product problems quickly before a complaint happens, it can generate new sales, and it builds a long-term relationship with a customer.