Small improvements can make a big difference in anything you do, and the same is true for selling. During our sales training courses and workshops, we suggest the following 12 guidelines. Over time we have found that if used consistently, sales results improve.
Sales Training Basics
- Acknowledge customers: Makes eye contact, smile, and use a friendly greeting.
- Use an effective opening statement: Begin conversations with customers that show that you are there to help. For example, “What could I help you find?” or “How may I help you today? or “What brings you in?”
- Use open questions to establish needs: Start questions with what, where, when, how, why, tell, explain, describe, etc.
- Listen actively to what customers have said: Demonstrate that you are listening by using nonverbal cues: nodding your head, leaning forward, making eye contact, etc.
- Speak your customer’s language: Make word choices that your customer will understand; do not speak in jargon.
- Summarize what customers say to check understanding: Repeat key points that your customers make.
- Match the benefits of the product to the needs of each customer: Having listened to your customers, describe what the product will do for them.
- Keep the customer’s interests in mind: Become a trusted resource by meeting needs and not by being pushy or demanding.
- Effectively deal with objections: Asks question to identify and understand concerns or doubts, and reassure the customer by mentioning the relevant benefits of the product.
- Ask a direct question to close the sale: For example, “How would you like to pay?” or “When would you like it delivered?”
- Generate an add-on sale: Identify opportunities to sell products that complement the sale, and stress those benefits to customers.
- End on a positive note: Endorse the customer’s choice, and thank the customer for his or her business.