How to Close a Sale: 20 Effective Sales Closing Techniques in 2024
Are you frustrated with sales deals that fail even after months of attempting to convince the prospect?
You are not alone. Only 19% of sales leads turn into buyers on average, and all the rest is wasted time and money! However, you can change this by applying the right techniques to successfully complete or “close” your sales deals.
Applying a proven closing technique will ensure that all your efforts at pursuing and persuading the prospects pay off with the desired sale! As a salesperson, you get closer to your quota and get your sales commission while the business adds to its sales revenue. But there are many techniques to choose from, and not all will suit your business.
So, this blog will cover the concept and types of sales closing techniques in detail to help you beat your competition with the perfect approach. Read to the end to find the common mistakes and how you can avoid them to get a smooth start. Let’s begin!
Table of Contents
- What Is Sales Closing?
- Why Are Sales Closing Techniques Important?
- What Are The Best Sales Closing Techniques?
- The Visualization close
- The Puppy dog close
- The Assumptive close
- The Question close
- The Analytics close
- The Now or never close
- The Urgency close
- The Empathy close
- The Hard close
- The Soft Close
- The Take Away Close
- The Summary Close
- The Sharp Angle Close
- The Something For Nothing Close
- The Objection Solicitation Close
- The Ben Franklin Close
- The Needs Close
- The Artisan Close
- The Alternative Closing Technique
- The Opportunity Cost Closing Technique
- Common Sales Closing Mistakes To Avoid
What Is Sales Closing?
Sales closing is the event wherein the seller and buyer agree to the conditions of the sale, and the buyer commits to complete the transaction. Closing is the natural ending of the sales process when a prospect or customer decides to make a purchase. It is the finale of your salesperson’s efforts and usually involves the prospect making the purchase or signing an agreement.
Sales closing is an irreplaceable part of the sales process as it is the last phase where the prospect agrees to buy the product. This is the crucial step that confirms the sale, helping the sales representatives meet their quota while growing the business’s revenue.
However, getting to the final purchase agreement takes a lot of persistence as people often think twice before spending their hard-earned money. And if the closing is unsuccessful, all your efforts at engaging and convincing the prospect go waste!
This make-or-break nature of sales closing can make it one of the most stressful aspects of selling. But it doesn’t have to be so! Sales closing can be easy and effective if you use the correct sales methods or techniques, which we will now discuss in detail.
Why Are Sales Closing Techniques Important?
Sales closing techniques are processes that guide a salesperson on their path from pitching a product to asking the prospect to buy it. It generally involves steps to pique their interest, compel them with benefits, and offer an unbeatable win-win deal.
Sales closing techniques integrate the close into your pitch smoothly, giving you the best possible chance of achieving the desired result at the end of the meeting. They make the closing natural and seamless, ensuring that you don’t have to use pushy tactics that can potentially harm your rapport with the prospect. Here are some key points that reflect the importance of sales closing techniques-
- All of the other skills and efforts of a salesperson may go to waste if you don’t use a subtle and methodical approach that ensures a “yes” from the prospect.
- Employing sales closing techniques has proven to increase business volume and productivity.
- Closing a sale is the deciding stage in which you must use time-tested techniques to ensure maximum outputs. You can’t afford to guess your way through the closing stage!
- Closing techniques help you establish and maintain a positive reputation for yourself as a salesperson.
- Sales closing techniques create a sense of urgency to help overcome inertia when a prospect is interested but delaying the commitment.
- They help you earn the trust and credibility of your potential customer by making your offer attractive and helpful instead of pushy. This makes the customer likely to buy from you again.
What Are The Best Sales Closing Techniques?
There are several types of closing techniques, and your salesperson must select the right one for each case depending on the offering, customer behavior, and past interactions. To help you get started, here are the 21 most effective sales closing techniques that can boost your closing success rate-
1. The Visualization close
Humans are primarily vision-dependent, so it’s easy for customers to understand why they should buy something when they visualize it. The visualization close leverages this by helping the prospect visualize what they’re purchasing and how it would help them. This trick applies to almost all offerings with a physical appearance or effect.
2. The Puppy dog close
This is a simple trick where you temporarily offer the product or service to get well-qualified leads. The idea is that once they experience its value, customers will be unwilling to give the offering back!
An example of this concept is when you wouldn’t want to give back a puppy dog once you have bonded with it, which is often really quick! The puppy dog close technique gets its name from this example and is ideal for offerings that prove their value in a short while.
3.The Assumptive close
This is a power move where you move ahead and make the offer, assuming that the prospect wants to buy. This approach is ideal if you feel the prospect has an interest in the offering but needs a little push to take the call to buy it.
So, instead of asking prospects if they want to buy the product, you will confidently ask the number required or desired delivery time.
4. The Question close
Customers often have subconscious concerns that stop them from making the purchase decision. So, this closing technique requires you to ask a series of probing questions to eliminate all objections and then make an attractive offer. For example, you can go with a direct question such as- “Is there anything preventing you from buying this product today?”
5. The Analytics close
Some clients are analytical and want to see and judge all the facts before deciding. In this case, you can offer compelling statistics, infographics, and a list of advantages v/s disadvantages. And this requires clear explanations with compelling statistics so that the prospects themselves make a favorable decision.
6. The Now or never close
This classic technique has stood the test of time and is highly effective at driving hesitant prospects into action. It involves enticing prospects by offering them a special benefit such as a discount, gift, or bonus. For example, you can say- “If you sign up today, I can offer a 25% discount.”
7. The Urgency close
This technique creates a sense of urgency that puts pressure on the prospect, encouraging them to make a purchasing decision. It can drive immediate action but requires perfect timing as your customer must have enough interest in your product, or your offer would seem too pushy.
Here is an example of urgency close- “This is a limited-time offer that is valid only till the end of the day.”
8. The Empathy close
Depending on the offering and the prospect’s personality, focusing more on emotions and empathy can be more effective than persuasive reasoning. The empathy close technique is suitable for such instances.
It requires showing the customers that you care about their pain and that your offering will perfectly solve their problems. So, you need to be more like a doctor than a seller for a successful empathy close! Besides the immediate benefits, this technique also helps you create lasting and lucrative relationships with your customers.
9. The Hard close
Go for the hard close if you feel the only way to ensure the purchase from a point is by making a straightforward offer. This technique involves face-to-face overt selling when you directly push someone into buying. However, you should try to apply this technique only once the prospect has shown interest in the product or service. An example of a hard close is- “Could you please sign this agreement?”
10. The Soft Close
The soft close shows your prospect the benefit of your product or service without promotion while asking occasional questions to raise their interest and shape further comments. This can help you identify what the prospect wants and subtly move them towards the purchase without asking for an immediate commitment. If you play your cards right, the client will eventually get interested in purchasing the product by their initiative!
For example, you can go with- “If I could reduce your maintenance cost by 25% and productivity by 15%, would you be interested in learning more?” This statement gets the client involved. And you can follow it with information about the features and then convincing information about the offer, such as- “If you spend another $10,000, you will get a 20% discount on the entire order”.
11. The Take Away Close
The take away close involves showing indications of withdrawing the offer. And it is effective because it grabs attention and creates a fear of missing out. This technique capitalizes on people’s desire for things they can not have, also known as reverse psychology. However, this tactic works only if the prospect already has an interest in your product or service.
12. The Summary Close
This closing technique includes reiterating the key points of the offerings while stressing the value and benefits to get the prospect to commit. It puts previously agreed-upon points into one impressive package to remind prospects what the deal offers them.
An example of a summary close is- “So we are offering you the ABC mobile phone with a 7-inch LED display, powerful processor, and high battery life at a discount of 20%. Are you ready to avail the offer now?”
13. The Sharp Angle Close
Prospects often ask for discounts or add-ons if they feel they have the upper hand. Here, you may try the sharp angle close technique where you agree with the request and make an immediate purchase request! This approach surprises prospects and makes them feel they are getting a great offer as per their wishes which they must not miss out on.
For example, you can reply to “Can you offer a 10% discount?” with “Sure. I can do that if you buy today”. However, prospects may sometimes reply negatively to a sharp angle close, showing that they are not interested or your approach is not right.
14. The Something For Nothing Close
The Something For Nothing Closing Technique works around the concept of goodwill and reciprocity. You give your prospect an extra feature or free add-on in goodwill, making them feel obligated to do something in return, which could be buying the product!
Who doesn’t like free stuff? However, your free addition must be relevant and not too expensive for you, or you may significantly lower your profits.
15. The Objection Solicitation Close
In the Objection Solicitation close, you ask a specific question that gets any reservations or concerns of the prospect in the open. This trick lets you address all possible objections and convince prospective customers that the offering is perfect for them.
This closing technique is very useful if prospects appear reluctant to decide without directly revealing the reason.
16. The Ben Franklin Close
Benjamin Franklin used to list down the pros and cons involved in difficult decisions, helping him make a confident choice. You can apply this simple tactic to sales closing when the prospect has difficulty with the purchase decision.
Listing down the pros and cons of your product will give a complete picture generating trust and helping prospects realize how valuable your product is for them. Once reluctant prospects see that the pros outweigh the cons, the odds of you closing the deal successfully improve.
17. The Needs Close
This sales technique focuses on satisfying the prospect’s needs to encourage them to buy your offering. First, you list the things the prospects say they need from your product. Then, you review the list against your product and find the points that match. These points become the focus of further discussion, helping you impress the prospect by showing how your offering precisely addresses their needs and problems.
18. The Artisan Close
The Artisan Closing technique highlights the amount of effort, skill, and time invested in the product. It is a unique approach that focuses more on the behind-the-scenes of your product rather than the benefits it offers its users.
This technique works best with prospects who appreciate things involving a lot of effort and hard work, such as paintings or artistic pottery. It adds perceived value to products and allows you to charge higher prices for the exceptional work in creating the product or service.
19. The Alternative Closing Technique
The Alternative Close is an assumptive approach where you assume that the prospects have an interest in your product and provide them with two alternative choices to move the deal forward. It works best when there are no remaining objections or queries.
The alternative closing technique involves prospects, offers more diversity for an accurate choice, and simplifies decision-making. This, in turn, makes it easier for them to make commitments.
20. The Opportunity Cost Closing Technique
In business terms, the opportunity cost is the cost of forgoing an opportunity. It is the cost you incur by not doing something. This sales closing technique taps into this principle by stressing what the prospect will miss out on if they do not buy and implement your solution.
You must insist on why purchasing your product is not an expenditure but rather a critical investment. Also, highlight the negative effects of not using the offering in comparison to the benefits they will enjoy on using it, such as better efficiency and convenience. Lastly, compare their positive returns from the benefits in the long run with the much smaller investment at present.
This process will make the prospects realize that the longer they take to buy and implement the offering, the more they will stand to lose. And this will compel them to act immediately and buy your product or service.
That brings us to the end of the types of closing techniques.
Common Sales Closing Mistakes To Avoid
There are several common mistakes that almost every salesperson commits during their sales career. But we will help you avoid them by listing out the ten most common mistakes and tricks to avoid them-
1. Talking too much without listening
Talking is essential while trying to sell something, but it’s easy to become irrelevant and pushy if you don’t stop to listen! Remember that you are not delivering a speech to advertise your product or service. You are there to listen to your prospective customer’s needs and tailor your offer to help them.
So, you must focus on listening and understanding the prospect first and later make personalized recommendations that address their pain points in a considerate manner. This approach is especially critical during your sales process’s prospecting (consideration and qualification) stage.
2. Offering too much for nothing
In an attempt to win the customer, some salespeople tend to offer too much help for little or nothing in return. Helping is certainly necessary to build trust, but you must define the limits, or you may end up as an unpaid consultant for people who don’t intend to buy anything!
So, your help should involve the solutions to your prospect’s problems in the form of your sales offering. Moreover, you must avoid going out of the way to help with irrelevant issues.
3. Not focusing on the solution
A common error is that salespeople focus only on explaining their offering’s features and forget to sell the solution it offers to the client. This error is closely related to the mistake of talking too much and not listening. And so is its solution!
No one likes to hear you boasting about your product, they want solutions to their issues. So, you must focus on understanding your prospect’s most pressing problems and then make a personalized offer that explains how your offering can help them solve those problems.
4. Focusing on price, not value
People buy products or services for the value they offer, not because they are cheap! A low price does encourage prospects to buy the offering, but you already ensured that they have sufficient buying power while choosing leads!
So, you must focus on the value that your offering delivers and offer discounts to drive the prospect into action only if they are reluctant to buy based on the value alone. Selling with a focus only on the low price may occasionally get customers, but such customers will not be loyal to your brand.
5. Making promises you can’t keep
Overpromising and under delivering is a sure-shot way to lose the sale and destroy your reputation. Instead of making tall promises that you can’t keep, let the prospects sell to themselves!
You can do this by asking the right questions that gently push the prospect toward your product by their initiative. Moreover, you can even underpromise and overdeliver while offering free trials. Low expectations and high results can surprise the prospect, encouraging them to proceed with the purchase.
6. Not having the intention to close a sale
If you focus too much on offering help and advice, you may miss out on making a strong closing offer! You must step into a sale determined to turn the prospect into your customer and look for opportunities to convince the customer without being too pushy. Following the correct sales technique carefully will help you easily avoid this mistake. Also, try using apt closing statements for sales.
7. Not being ready to overcome common objections
Treating objections as hurdles that you must avoid is usually the wrong approach. This is because objections give you a chance to solve the prospect’s concerns and prove that your product or service is a good match for the client.
So, repeated rejections only strengthen the final buying decision if you focus on answering objections with a pre-planned response that acknowledges and addresses the concerns respectfully.
Patience is the key here! However, repeated objections may sometimes indicate that your offering is not the right match for the client. In such cases, you must abandon the sale to save time and effort.
8. Arguing with a potential customer
A prospect’s objections may become unreasonable or illogical, which no explanation can resolve. But if you lose your temper, you will lose the deal and your reputation with it!
Instead, you should reason with them respectfully and reaffirm that your offer is relevant to their needs. If this doesn’t help, it may be time to abandon the lead and end the conversation without fruitless arguments.
9. Not doing your homework
Attempts to convince a stranger without any planned guidelines are likely to fail. It is vital to prepare your talking points, key questions, and responses to common objections based on the prospect’s profile in advance.
This preparation will help you communicate better and ask the right questions, resulting in a better rapport and a more customized and convincing sales pitch. And this will lead to personal trust coupled with an irresistible offer, helping you seal the deal with minimum effort. In case you feel unprepared, you always read sales motivational quotes.
10. Not getting access to the decision-makers
A common mistake is that salespersons don’t focus on approaching and convincing the actual decision-makers. You must deal with the people who are qualified to make the final purchasing decision, even if they are not the end user.
Here’s a simple example- Would you approach babies to sell diapers, or would you rather talk to their parents? You would naturally have more luck with the parents as they have the necessary understanding and buying power, even though their infants are the end users.
How To Improve Your Closing Skills?
Sales closing is a tricky art, and you must have the necessary skills and knowledge to ace it. So, here are some methods to improve your sales closing skills as a salesperson-
Go for sales training
There are many books and courses on improving sales and salesmanship. You just need to find some time every day for them, and you will soon find yourself naturally incorporating their suggestions!
Keep a tally of your sales
The numbers don’t lie! Keep a record of your sales to find your strong and weak points and work on improving your weak areas while making the most of your strengths. For example, you may be great at cold calling but require writing practice to create effective follow-up emails.
Talk with others
You must get out of your shell and ask members of your own team, former employees, or other salespersons for advice. You can also join referral groups to get suggestions on how to convince customers of a product’s value.
Set achievable goals
Set monthly targets and do your best to hit or exceed them. You should start small and increase the targets as you get better. This simple trick will keep you motivated and give direction to your career.
Talk with customers
Customers are your target as a salesperson, so who is a better judge of your skills than them? Moreover, customers meet several salespersons every day, so they know what works and what doesn’t. And they may be willing to reveal it to you once you build a good rapport and ask the right questions.
Target existing customers
Existing customers are more likely to buy your brand’s offerings than new ones. In fact, 65% of a company’s business results from existing customers on average.
So, you must focus on maintaining relationships with existing customers and regularly making personalized offers to them to encourage them to buy again. You must also look for opportunities to upsell and cross-sell to existing customers wherever possible.
Buckle Up To Use Sales Closing Techniques For More Closed Deals
The tips and techniques this blog covers can help you increase your sales by simplifying and optimizing the crucial stage of closing deals. So, it’s time to train your salespersons in sales closing techniques to boost your closing success rate.
However, you can’t sell ice to an Eskimo! You must ensure that your sales representatives get high-quality sales qualified leads to begin with. Maintaining a quality standard for leads is critical to raising the productivity and motivation of your salespersons. Otherwise, they may waste lots of time, costs, and effort on irrelevant prospects.
So, once you know how to close a sale, you must ensure a consistent and coordinated effort from your marketing and sales teams to enhance the impact of your sales closing techniques and skyrocket your sales!
All the best!
Here are the best sales closing techniques: The Visualization close, the Puppy dog close, the Assumptive close, the Question close, the Now or never close, the Urgency close, the Empathy close, the Hard close,
the Soft Close, the Take Away Close, the Summary Close, the Sharp Angle Close.
Overall, sales reps consider the following closing techniques to be effective: The assumptive close, the option close, the suggestion close, the urgency close
You can use sales closing techniques to close deals faster. They are mainly psychological tactics that work in your favor most often. Try using the closing technique that fits your needs.