Overcoming Sales Objections

What happens when YOU get a sales objection ?

  • Do you fumble about and mumble ?
  • Worse still, do you sit there dumbfounded ?
  • Do you remember all these great responses when you leave the prospect's office and get in your car ?

Have you ever experienced the following ?

You are in front of one of your biggest accounts. You've asked the right questions and gave a dynamic presentation.

You are confident the sale will happen.
Maybe your heart is beating rapidly or your hands feel clammy.

The time has come to ask for the order.
You take a deep breath and say, "Let's do it!"

But, your client pauses and says,
"I’m just not sure. I need to think about it. Call me in six months."
Or ...
"I need to talk it over with ..."
"I'm not sure we have the money in the budget till ..."

How do you FEEL when this happens ?

Are you able to keep the prospect talking or do you just feel "gutted" or depressed or rejected or confused? 

Does it have to be the "End of the road" ?

Sale in six months? No!
More than likely the client is ready to buy and is just afraid of making an immediate decision. If his fears were eliminated, he'd buy now !
This is where your objection handling skills come into play.

Handling objections essentially removes those obstacles to your sales success !

Uncovering and dealing with sales objections challenges you intellectually and emotionally. It requires that you know not only your product, but yourself and your prospect as well. Product knowledge, creativity, sales tools, and confidence in yourself, your product, and your company must all come together in dealing with them and closing the sale. You must combine technique with honesty and conviction to get the prospect to resolve any lingering doubt or conflict.

So, why do so many salespeople leave with no sale? They never learned the art of overcoming sales objections and hanging in there to get the sale. That’s what this web page is about.

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Things not to do

1) Never but never argue.

Even if you are right you'll probably lose the sale.

2) Never, but never attack the person.

Separate the person from the objection and deal with it as apart from them. If you fight a person's feelings, more negative emotions will emerge and you will lose!(Not a good Rapport building tactic)

3 ) Never assume you understand an unspecified word

If a prospect uses a word that is a Nominalisation don’t start answering until you first understand their meaning. ( Briefly, a nominalisation is a word you cannot place in a wheelbarrow, it’s a concept not a tangible thing.)

For example, if a prospect says: “I need versatility.” Don’t start talking about flexibility or the range of products you have or your payment options because that may not be what your client is talking about.

Better to ask: 'Could you explain to me what you mean by versatility?' or

4 ) Never Insult the Prospect

Let’s look at an example.Prospect: 'Your prices are too high.'

It would not be very smart to reply with, 'Aren’t you interested in quality?'

You could reply with:“High prices compared to what?” or you could soften that with,“I understand your concern about pricing, we all need to ensure we’re competitive in this modern world, and could you tell me who or what you are comparing us to in making that comparison? ”

5 ) Never Avoid the Issue

'Quite frankly, your service is useless.'

It would not be right to change the subject or talk in theory about what is good service because you are dealing with an emotion here. The client is obviously angry or frustrated when the use a word like “useless”. You need to help them vent their emotion.

Much better to stick with the issue, 'Obviously something has happened to make you feel that way. Can you tell me about it?'

You need to do your best to establish and maintain Rapport in these situations.

6 ) Don’t Shift Responsibility

When there is a problem don’t try to blame it on your office staff or your delivery people. Think about how that is perceived by your customer. Your customer will only understand that you are dodging the blame. What your customer wants is for someone to accept responsibility and fix the problem.

You need to be responding with “We….”, to show that you stand with your company then with “I’ll fix it.” The “I” bit is important as you are the company in the eyes of your customer and if you have any sort of relationship with him / her they will feel more comfortable knowing the person who is looking into it for them.

7) Never, but never make the person wrong.

Never make a person wrong because you will create an enemy.

Making the person wrong is not a good Rapport building strategy.

8 ) Never Contradict the Prospect

Prospect: 'You guys always seem to be having production problems.'Mistake: 'No, that's not correct. We had some problems when we upgraded the plant two years ago. Did you know we have not had any downtime in the last 18 months?'

A better reply would be: 'Yes, we had some production problems when we upgraded the plant and currently the plant is running flawlessly, in fact, it’s been running like that for the past 18 months. Can you tell me if you have experienced any delays so that I can investigate further?'

In the second reply, the sales rep acknowledges the prospect's perception of a problem. Remember, first you meet them where they are and then move them to where you want them to be.

9 ) Don’t dwell too long on an objection

Don’t dwell too long on an objection because you will amplify its importance in the mind of your customer. Better to answer briefly. Your answer should be just long enough to satisfy the prospect, and no longer.

10 ) Never guess an answer

Admit you don't know. Say: "I'm sorry, I don't have the answer to that question, but I promise to get the information to you."

When you actually get back to them with a reply, this will show you have the courage to admit what you don’t know and that you “walk your talk” and follow through on your commitments. This can only improve the client’s perception of you.

Now you know what not to do.

Now if you really want to know how to handle objections and can't wait to go through the FREE eCourse, you can Deal with those sales objections NOW.

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Want to know how to handle any objection ?

How do you go about Overcoming Sales Objections

Remember to have any chance you must first have established mutual trust and confidence and let the prospect know that you are there to be both an advocate and a consultant. If you can establish the rapport it will assist you greatly.

1) Hear the person out - Listen fully!

Don't interrupt. Listen patiently and intently. Interrupting a prospect will intensify the objection and cause prospects to become preoccupied with it.

You must completely focus on the prospect to determine the real significance of this objection. Let your genuine concern and sincere interest show on your face.

Don't anticipate what he/she is saying and finish the sentence for him/her, just because you've heard every objection under the sun doesn’t mean that you needn't listen fully to your prospect's objection. He/she may have a unique twist.

If appropriate, close your order book to take the tension off him/her.

Avoid leaping on the objection before the person finishes - that will only elicit irritation and a sense of being discounted.

2) Feed the Objection back for confirmation.

By restating the objection, you show your concern for the prospect and get clarification in case you misunderstood his/her point. ( Avoid paraphrasing the objection at this time, build rapport by repeating the exact words your prospect used ). Some prospects even withdraw their objections once they hear them spoken aloud.

While restating the objection you can begin to consider your initial strategy to minimize, ignore or handle the objection.

Hint : As you feed the objection back act a little bit surprised. If you've established value, you are surprised that he/she would have an objection. He would say something like, "well, gee, I don't have the time."

"You don't have the time?"

Just like that. You feed the objection right back to him/her. Remember, if you listen, totally, then you will hear things that are not verbalized.

3) Qualify it as the only true objection.

You need to qualify it as a true objection.

You may choose to say, "You mean that's the only reason you're not buying?"

Now he can either say yes or no. This smokes out the real objection. If it’s a fake objection the prospect will say “No.” then you can ask what are his or her other concerns. If he says "yes, that's the only reason why I'm not buying'' you now know the real objection and you can start to answer it.

Alternatively, you may like to try a method employed by Lee DeBois called the “Obviously you…” / “just suppose” technique.

4) Gently question and explore the Objection.

Once you have the real objection. Invite the person to elaborate fully, ask questions to specify their objection. Is it comprised of fluff, non-specific and overgeneralized statements?

Nod to accept their answers (even if unreasonable) and continue with questions. Frequently, it will take three to seven questions to truly explore the obstacle you face.

Explain the objection, as you understand it, for clarity – “I can appreciate that, so what you are saying is (objection).” Or "Do I understand you to mean that..." .Isolate the objection and lock it down.

Rephrase your question in a way that incorporates the solution. "So if I were able to get you a longer warranty, would that be enough for you to make a decision?" That also smokes it out if it is a false objection.

This is a part of the Rapport building process.

5) Answer the objection:

Having completed the following 4 steps you are in a good position to get down to applying your skills.

Actually you can just chose to ignore some sales objections and go back to establishing value ( which is the next step anyway ).

There are many ways you can respond:
You can answer by admitting the shortcoming of your product and shifting quickly to a strong advantage--- e.g. “Yes our matrix platform adjusts only forty degrees horizontally, but it provides 50% more vertical adjustment than any other machine”.

You can submit a testimonial letter, a competitive comparison chart , or a special time-sensitive or price-related offer.

Rather than frame an "objections" as a disagreement you can reframe every "objection" into a question that you welcome. Perhaps even reframe an objection so that it becomes an advantage or seems trivial in the eyes of the prospect.

You can lead a person to answer his or her own objection by asking appropriate questions.

The most advanced methods for overcoming sales objections can be found in the process of reframing. This technique is based on the fact that all meaning is context dependent. So, a cloudy, 70 degree day is great summer weather for Anchorage, Alaska (actually they celebrate that kind of weather in Anchorage). But in Hawaii ..? Not so good!

Consider that almost any meaning can be reframed by either a change in content or context. Further information about this amazingly useful concept can be found in my eBook.

6) Check and test for satisfaction that the objection has been dealt with.

As you proceed you need to confirm the answer has been received and understood. Don’t reply to the objection and leave it hanging in the air.Now that solves the problem, doesn’t it ? "When you think of it that way, how do you feel about this product satisfying your needs?"“I guess we’ve made that clear?”"With that question solved, we can go ahead, can’t we?"

If the client says yes, you can lead to a close. If the prospect doesn't feel that his objection has been dispelled, you have some choices.

Now you must prove what you suggested to the prospect. This is the time to demonstrate value, list comparisons, and prove benefits. If you cannot answer the prospect in a way that's different or sets you apart from others, you'll never close this (or any) sale.

No one can predict the future but history often repeats itself, so statistics and facts are valuable tools for changing minds. Bring them along. The proof you show is limited only by your imagination and the ability to back it up. When you believe it, they'll believe it. They can see it in your face and hear it in your voice. Then selling is easy.

Your other choice is to point out to the client that even given his objection, the other benefits of proceeding outweigh it.

7) Reorient the person to his / her criteria of values and lead into a close.

It's easy to let an objection disorient and confuse. Use questions that invite the person to reorient to what's really important; to the major benefits of the product and what is important to his/her specific situation. These should make the objection look small. Now that you have uncovered the prospect's needs and reinforced the value of your offering you can bridge to a close. By this time closing the sale should be "fait accompli" -- the natural outcome of all that has come before.

At this point you can just ask for the order simply and directly or employ any number of trail closes or closing methods. It’s often good to describe similar situations when you close; people like to know about others in the same situation as themselves.

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