“Our sales funnel creates lots of leads but not enough closes. What can we do differently to turn leads into closed sales to convert like crazy?”
Thoughts of the Day: Good news is you have opportunities coming in the door. Of the ones you have in front of you, how do you turn those leads into closed sales? How well do you understand clients’ needs? And how well do you convey that understanding? Is this the right time for your client to buy? If not, how can you adjust the timing?
One of the things that hold back a lot of companies is not having enough sales leads to work with.
Sounds like that’s not the problem here. Which is terrific. A strong pipeline of opportunities coming to the business is gold waiting to be mined.
Now help your company figure out how to tell the difference between good leads and not-so-good ones, between leads with potential to close now and ones that won’t close anytime soon. Look for delayed deals that can benefit from nurturing until they’re ready to close.
Arm salespeople with a script of questions for answers that solve their problems which will help turn leads into closed sales.
- What’s your ideal time frame, and why that timing?
- How much depends on this sale?
- How will any changes in customer needs, the economy, or your company’s situation impact your decision to purchase?
- Who else needs to be involved in decision-making on this purchase, how will they get involved, and what other commitments on their plates might get in the way of them paying attention to this deal?
- If you saw a way to move up the purchase timetable, what would motivate you to do that?
- How long before the lack of making this purchase impacts business performance and profits?
Understanding the client’s urgency and necessity is critical. If it’s not urgent and not necessary, the salespeople have a lot more work to do to keep this deal front and center and turn leads into closed sales.
Ask how well the solution fits the client’s needs and listen for objections.
Make sure that everyone involved in the decision sees it the same way as your contact, that you don’t get misled by one person who doesn’t represent the views of the buying group overall. Deal with objections thoroughly and carefully, but also be alert for deals that are more wishes than reality. Sometimes it’s more important to walk away and put the time elsewhere on another deal that shows more promise.
Deals that are urgent in the clients’ eyes should get closed right away. Don’t make things complicated; avoid creating obstacles to closing. Once the client admits there’s a fit, ask for the sale.
With outstanding deals, ask your salespeople to find out if the client’s timeline matches their estimate of when the deal might close. Check for any timing changes. Confirm expectations whether and how this deal might, or might not, happen. Encourage salespeople to get the truth about what’s happening, even if it’s not good news.
List and track outstanding opportunities in a spreadsheet to turn leads into closed sales.
Look at which salespeople are good at forecasting, which salespeople are good at setting accurate close dates, and which ones are over-promising and under-delivering. Put your focus on helping them to better understand what’s going on and how to either close more deals or let go of ones that have little or no hope.