10 Ways to Accelerate Closing Your Deals
Are any of the opportunities in your pipeline stale? Do you have
deals that you thought would close months ago, yet somehow they
remain in your pipeline? Most sales professionals suffer from
challenges related to opportunities that never seem to close, or
prospects that just don�t seem to take that final step. This
challenge causes salespeople and managers to be terminated. It�s so
common that many a company has failed because the supposedly strong
pipeline never materialized into revenue.
Good news ... the following will help you discover ten ways to
accelerate a deal to close.
10) Aggressive sales management.
It�s not ideal by any means (and that�s why it ranks at the bottom
of the list) but many a sales manager will proclaim that deals would
never have closed if it weren�t for micro-management. On a more
upbeat note, sales contests and other sales rep incentives fall
under this category, too.
9) Customer incentives.
This too is a bit of a last resort because compressing the sales
cycle by way of a fire sale typically results in reduced
profitability, not to mention the accompanying sales rep frustration
and customer anguish.
8) Gain a bona fide customer commitment to the timeline.
Granted, the road to frustration is paved with good intentions and
commitments that are not always fulfilled. But galvanizing the key
decision maker(s) to a timeline really does work wonders.
7) Drive consensus of the management team.
Agreement does not always equate to action but having every
stakeholder nodding �yes� is an important element if your solution
involves a broader decision-making-unit. Solution selling is
complex; this stuff�s chess, not checkers. Not every decision maker
has to agree, but just about any one of them can veto it. Getting
everyone on the same page can be time consuming and costly but it
does lead to agreement and action.
6) Persistent follow-up.
Ah, the basics. Professional, value-based follow-up is magical.
Out-of-sight is out-of-mind; so be tenacious with your best leads
and you�ll reap the rewards of focused activity.
5) Align the solution to a strategic objective.
Whether it�s at the departmental or corporate level, if your
solution helps the company achieve their stated goals, chances are
it�s closer to the fast lane. Even better, align it to an objective
that is part of the decision maker�s compensation or bonus program.
4) Expose a personal gain for the key decision maker(s).
It�s important to understand the difference between a professional
objective (see #5 above) and a personal objective. Uncovering the
personal ambitions and desires of the target people is a powerful
method to get the customer to take action.
3) Tie your solution to a market opportunity of the customer.
This means enabling your customer to provide an increased service
level that will yield your customer (incremental) revenue, or shield
your customer from losing (decremental) a current revenue stream.
2) Demonstrate a strong return on investment (ROI) supported by
customer data. If the decision maker recognizes that
the department or company is losing money by not implementing the
solution, it begins to become a no-brainer to get moving sooner
rather than later.
1) Tie your solution to a pending regulation or other impending
event whenever possible.
Granted this doesn�t affect most solutions. However nothing is more
motivating for a company than an impending event, such as a new
regulatory requirement that forces the company to act by a specific
Whether you�re selling a product or a service, the reality is that
the customer is not buying a product or a service. The customer is
buying a solution to a problem. Zig Ziglar once talked about Home
Depot selling one million 1/4� drill bits per year. Yet none of the
customers actually wanted a 1/4� drill bit, they all wanted 1/4�
holes. The same dynamics applies to your solution.
Kevin Graham, managing director for Empowered Sales Training,
authored �The Top Ten Ways to Accelerate a Deal to Closure.� EST
leverages deep personal experience, gems from industry icons,
classic sales methodologies and innovative practices to empower
sales success. Graham has qualified for President�s Club status in
three Fortune 500 companies, led teams of more than one hundred
associates, and successfully achieved revenue objectives in excess
of $1-billion per annum.
www.empoweredsalestraining.com for free sales guides, such
as Book More Meetings and Get The Decision Maker On The Phone, or to
take the Empowered Sales Quiz. (The Empowered Sales YouTube channel
offers dozens of free sales videos.)