If you lead a sales team or if you’re in sales yourself, then you know that closing business is a key part of the job. Yes, there are also other very important parts of selling, such as:
But, in the end, if you’re not closing sales — you’re not going to make it. As a general rule, when it comes to closing business, you might adopt this saying that we’ve been using for quite some time— "Slow down the proposal and speed up the sale."
At The Center for Sales Strategy (CSS), we’ve adopted this phrase because there seems to be this belief that simply moving fast and pitching proposals is the secret to selling. It’s simply NOT TRUE!
Yes, we believe in moving fast, and there is no reason to make things slow down if they don’t need too, but with that said — moving fast sometimes leads to skipping important parts of the selling process, which is not what you want to do.
5 Things You Can Do to Close More Business
1. Ensure that you have clarity on the decision-making process that your prospect is using and that you’re confident that you have sufficiently involved the Decision-Maker and key Decision-Influencers in your idea, solution, and proposal.
2. Have you and the prospect (or the client if you’re reselling) agreed on an assignment that’s important enough to invest significant funds in addressing it? The key here is that you have agreed it is important and that there are funds to address it. The big mistake is often made when it is assumed versus agreed. Locking in on that agreement is key.
3. Have you discussed, in specific terms, how much your proposed solution will cost, and is your prospect open to investing that amount? Showing the investment level for the first time when you present the final proposal is not the best idea. In most cases, it causes the prospect to have to “think about” and send it to pending versus agreeing to the deal. Your goal is not to create pending but rather to close business.
4. Does your proposal clearly ask for a decision about the solution or plan you are recommending?
5. Have you checked for typos and other errors? After all, your proposal is a representation of your brand. Also, make sure you haven’t left out your name, the proposal date, and the expiration date as those little details all really matter.
Take time to revisit your sales strategy and techniques. Having clarity on the decision-making process, locking in agreements and budgets, asking for a decision, and double-checking your proposal win you more sales!