Be prepared to close the sale

Carrying forty forms is a much lesser burden than transferring the responsibility, and therefore accountability, of sale completion to the buyer.

It lasts for a second. Literally. That fleeting opportunity the girl gives the boy when the first kiss is imminent. And then it passes. Exploited or wasted. This is a sales column, not a relationship one, so what am I on about? This fleeting moment replicates itself in selling as an opportunity to close the sale. Regrettably many sellers waste it because they are unprepared.  And despite all the efforts that led to it, a sale is lost.

If I were a hawker I would sell CDs not DVDs. Why? It’s an easier sale to make. Most cars have CD players but only a few, DVD. Plus it’s dangerous to watch and drive. The driver can easily test the CD and thus more likely buy it than if he cannot as in the case of the DVD. Of course, there is the opportunity to cross-sell the DVD. I’m not lost on that; I’m more focused, on making it easy to close the sale.

Like newspaper vendors standing on a bump knowing you will slow down and that you are unlikely to park the car off the road, exit and go looking for them. Very much unlike the seller who at that magical moment is when he rummages through his folder to remove the contract to be signed (or, his ‘phone goes off)-and poof! the spell is broken. If only he had been ready with the document on the desk from go (and his phone off). If only he was as prepared as hawkers selling the wares that are in pressing need at the moment- for instance this week they will sprout on the streets with umbrellas.

Be equally prepared to close the sale.  Through practice, be armed to the teeth with responses to all possible objections (like “Let me ask my wife, first” or “Let me review the brochure again”) so that you don’t get stumped by them. Also, you shoot yourself in the foot when you ask the customer to fill in the RTGS (a type of bank payment) form, to kick off the transaction. You have likely given him too much work; and he will unlikely do it right away, if at all. And yet, you want it done right away for the sale to close. So, what to do? Find out in advance which bank he will be paying from and have the blank forms with you. You make it easier for him (and thus the sale to manifest) when you tell him, “Just sign here. I’ll fill in the rest, submit to the bank and email you the bank’s confirmation of having received the instructions.” What if you don’t know his bank? Well, carry RTGS forms from the top twenty banks, if not, all forty.  It’s a much lesser burden than transferring the responsibility and therefore accountability of sale completion to the buyer.

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