What Are the Best Sales Techniques?
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As a salesperson, you are probably looking for new techniques to help you close more sales.
Indeed, sales is a methodical science that is mastered over the long run. There are many techniques that will help you better manage your sales calls and improve your conversion rate.
What are sales techniques? Why should you apply them? And what are the different techniques that exist?
In this blog post, we will review the different sales techniques that can be used to help you get more new customers.
What are sales techniques?
A sales technique is a strategy or approach that salespeople use to influence potential customers during the whole sales process. It is a set of practices designed to sell a product or service more effectively.
There are as many sales techniques as there are situations… that is to say an infinite number.
However, most sales techniques can be categorized according to the different stages of a sales process, which are:
- the approach phase
- the discovery of needs
- the sales pitch
- the response to objections
- the closing
Why should you use a sales technique?
As mentioned above, the main objective of using sales techniques is to increase your closing rate. Meaning that you will be able to generate more revenue for your company.
As with any profession, the effectiveness of the right sales profile hinges on multiple factors:
‘Technique’ belongs to this last category of skills. Indeed, if a good salesperson has an innate disposition for sales, learning sales techniques will allow them to gain even more in their performance as a sales rep.
Moreover, by using techniques during your interactions with customers, you can establish a relationship of trust with prospects. This will encourage them to do business with you in the future and eventually upsell!
What are the different techniques that exist?
There are many types of sales techniques you can use, but here are 20 of the most effective:
Method 1: The elevator pitch technique
The elevator pitch is a classic sales technique that allows you to present your offer in a very concise way, usually in about 30 seconds to a minute. You can use it either for cold calling or warm calling.
It is the ideal tool to make an impression on potential customers and get them interested in what you have to say.
To make an effective elevator pitch, you need to focus on three things
- Who are you?
- What do you do?
- What can you do for your prospect?
By keeping these three points in mind, you will be able to deliver a clear and concise message that will resonate with your audience.
Method 2: The Problem/Solution technique
The problem/solution technique is a very popular cold calling technique, especially in lead marketing, that allows you to identify your customers’ needs and offer them a solution that meets their expectations.
To use this technique, simply ask your prospects through a discovery call what their main challenges are. Once you have identified their pain points, offer them a solution that will help them solve their problem.
This technique is particularly effective because it allows you to demonstrate that you understand the customer’s situation and that you have the solution(s) to meet their needs.
Method 3: The Before & After technique
The before-and-after technique is another way to highlight the value of your product or service.
To use this technique, simply describe to your prospect what their product or service does for them and then show them what their life would be like without it.
This technique will allow you to demonstrate the value of your offer in a very concrete way.
Method 4: The testimonial technique
The testimonial technique consists of using testimonials from other satisfied customers to increase your credibility and build trust with your leads.
To use this technique, simply collect testimonials from your satisfied customers and use them in your sales pitch. You can also include them on your website or social media channels.
A very popular LinkedIn strategy for instance consists of collecting client testimonials and featuring them in a post on your page.
This type of content tends to generate a lot of trust, as it shows that other customers have had success with your products or services.
Method 5: The authority technique
The authority technique is all about positioning yourself as an expert in your field in order to gain the trust of your prospects.
To use this technique, simply show your prospects that you have the expertise and knowledge to help them solve their problems. You can do this by sharing relevant blog posts or articles, statistics, key accounts, research reports… anything that will prove that your brand is an authority in your market.
This technique is common among large-account customers who prefer to invest in reliable solutions rather than start-ups with a new product.
Method 6: The social proof technique
The social proof technique leverages the approval of the people around your prospect to increase your credibility.
To use this technique, simply show your prospects that other people or companies in their environment are using your product or service and are happy with the results. You can do this by sharing testimonials, case studies, or reviews.
This technique is somewhat similar to the authority technique, with the difference that it will work better on referrals from the personal circle of the individual you are talking to.
Method 7: The scarcity technique
The scarcity technique consists in creating a sense of urgency by highlighting the limited availability of your product or service.
To use this technique, you need to let your prospects know that your offer is coming to an end and that they need to act quickly if they want to take advantage of it.
You can do this by setting deadlines, limiting the number of products available, or offering special discounts for a limited time.
This technique works very well because it encourages people to act out of fear of missing a great opportunity, aka their FOMO.
Method 8: The contrast technique
The contrast/comparison technique allows you to highlight the features and benefits of your product or service by comparing it to your competitors.
To use this technique, you will need to identify key features and benefits of your product or service and compare them to those of your competitor. This will allow you to demonstrate the superiority of your offering in a very concrete way.
This technique is often used by salespeople to close a deal by highlighting the advantages their offer has over the competition.
Note that this method will only work if you have a differentiating argument in favor of your brand compared to the competition.
Method 9: The curiosity (tease) technique
The art of teasing in sales consists of arousing the curiosity of your prospects so that they want to know more about your product or service.
It can be used in the approach phase, at the very beginning of the sales meeting, or during the sales pitch, to refocus your lead’s attention when you lose it.
To use this technique, you need to create a message that piques your prospects’ curiosity and makes them want to know more. You can do this by asking questions or sharing some information without giving too much away.
This technique is often used in online advertising, where the goal is to get people to click on a link to learn more about a product or service.
Method 10: Storytelling
The storytelling technique comes down to telling your prospects a story that will create an emotional connection with your brand.
To use this technique, you must identify the values that are important to your target audience and create a story around them. This story can be about your brand, your customers, or even yourself. The goal is to create an emotional bond that will make your prospects want to do business with you.
This sales tactic comes together with marketing strategies beautifully. The respective teams will have prepared the work beforehand via media storytelling actions, and so on.
How to properly apply your sales techniques?
Now that you know what sales techniques exist and how they work, you still need to apply them well.
To do this, you must take into account the following points:
- Sales techniques are not mutually exclusive. On the contrary, they often complement each other. So don’t hesitate to use several at once to increase your chances of success.
- Not every sales technique will work with every prospect. It is therefore important to adapt your approach according to the person you are dealing with and their profile.
- Sales techniques must be used at the appropriate point in your B2B sales process. For example, it is useless to use the scarcity technique if your prospect is not yet convinced of the utility of your product.
- Finally, it is essential to use sales techniques carefully and subtly. If you overdo it, you risk coming across as insincere or even manipulative, which will damage your relationship with your prospect.
Therefore, sales techniques should be used wisely, taking into account the person you are selling to and the stage of the sale.
Here are some final tips to help you boost your online sales:
1. Train and learn from the best
If you want to master sales techniques, you need to train and learn from the best. There are many books and courses on the subject that can help you develop your skills.
2. Practice, practice, practice
The only way to master sales techniques is to practice, practice, practice. The more you use them, the better you will become at them.
3. Be sincere
When using sales techniques, make sure you are sincere and authentic. If your prospects feel that you are trying to manipulate them, they will not hesitate to end the relationship with you.
Selling is a tough business and you will undoubtedly encounter rejections along the way. But don’t give up, because every “no” gets you closer to a “yes.”
5. Have fun
Last but not least, have fun! Selling is a great job that can be very rewarding if you do it well. So have fun, it will show in all your sales conversations with your prospects!