top tips for closing sales and hitting your targets.

Closing sales might seem difficult especially if you're new to an organisation handling direct sales. Fortunately, selling to warm leads, which will often be the case in sales positions, is easier is you know the right skills and techniques.

Customers are already interested in the product and might just need a few questions answered before they close the deal. Cold selling is a little bit different. Below we take a look at how you can keep on target and effectively close sales.

How to hit your sales targets: techniques.

Written material.

It is widely believed that salespeople who offer written material over a simple verbal pitch tend to close more sales. This is because people are naturally more inclined to believe what we read rather than what we see.

Requesting or even going out of your way to prepare a document highlighting a product or service's most admirable points will go a long way in helping salespeople to help close deals.

Materials can also be distributed to cold leads, which might reflect on the material at a later point in order to make a decision further down the line.

Of course, this assumes salespeople are already doing quite well and can afford to let leads go away to think about things themselves, but it does tend to pay dividends in the end.

Communication skills.

When dealing with leads, salespeople need to communicate with them as clearly as possible. Customers feel more assured with salespeople who are able to clearly and confidently communicate their ideas.

This is something that comes natural to some but for those who aren't practising pitches in front of a mirror, into a voice recorder, or even friends and family members can help smooth out rough edges before it becomes the time to try them in a live situation.

Salespeople may also want to consider joining public speaking groups in order to boost their ability to communicate to larger unknown audiences.

Body language.

The body language sales people employ can make or break any deal. There are two rules within the field for this, too: salespeople should remain seated at all times during a pitch and they should make firm yet non-threatening eye contact.

This will accomplish two things. When salespeople stand up at any point during a pitch, unless the pitch was always delivered from a standing position, then they are silently communicating that something in the pitch has changed.

This can be very unsettling to some customers, who were probably un-swayed by a salesperson's presentation to begin with. Clear eye contact will also help deliver a sense of authority and trustworthiness.

If salespeople believe in their own product or service and show it through their eyes, then customers are likely to remain inclined to close the deal too.

Treat leads like buyers.

Leads are buyers who simply have not made up their minds yet and need a little persuasion. When salespeople come from the position that prospects are just potential buyers, then this is likely to communicate itself through a poorly delivered pitch or poor body language. Both will induce disastrous results.

Salespeople, therefore, need to approach the whole process as if the prospect has already made the sale and just needs a little coaxing in the right direction. Doing this will communicate a far higher level of confidence and desire to sell than a more relaxed approach.

Smile.

Smiling goes a long way to communicating confidence. However, the main point behind salespeople always smiling is that it comes through clearly within their voices.

Various muscles are relaxed and stretched into such a way that the vocal chords become more readily able to communicate at higher pitches, which are commonly associated with pleasantry.

Doing this will allow prospects to feel much more comfortable in a sales surrounding, which further eases their transition into buying customers.

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