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Although many experts claim that prospecting is the most challenging stage of the sales process, 71% of sales reps say that closing contracts is their top priority. And it makes sense, since maintaining consistent sales is what will help your business grow.
But what about those prospects who seem to be out of line with your offer?
This could happen for several reasons:
-An event out of your control, such as your contact in the company leaving his or her position vacant, the company changing direction or budget problems.
-You didn't create enough urgency, i.e., your prospect doesn't see the need to take immediate action.
-It doesn't suit your buyer person. Your product does not solve their pains, nor does it offer them value in their day-to-day life.
-He never wanted to buy from the beginning. A prospect might carry a conversation to the end, even knowing he or she is not ready to buy or does not have the authority to make the decision.
Apart from the first point, which is out of your hands, it is possible to reduce the chances of having prospects who do not want to buy, who do not suit your buyer person or who do not have the urgency. You should only identify the following signs.
In this first stage, your representatives communicate with the prospects via phone, mail or social networks. Buyers know little or nothing about your service or company.
1. They don't show up at your meetings
It's normal for a scheduling issue to occur, but if you notice that a prospect cancels meetings frequently or simply doesn't show up, he's definitely not interested in buying.
2. They tell you he's investigating
Some prospects claim that they only want to know information, but not to make a purchase or receive any contract proposal before a particular period. At this point, you can prioritize those prospects who show the most interest and are ready to buy; always maintaining courtesy and open doors, in case you change your mind
At this stage the sales representatives will be able to find out about the needs and challenges of their prospects, and if they really need your service; while they begin to know in depth the characteristics of your offer.
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3. You can't create a need
Your prospect may have the budget, purchasing authority and interest in your product, but if he or she cannot identify a need, he or she may not become a buyer. Disqualify leads who do not recognize their problem or are not interested in solving it soon.
4. Your prospect can't explain why he needs the service now
Your prospect may have a problem, but if he doesn't have a reason to attack it now, he simply won't buy. If he feels his need isn't important enough to solve in the short term, you can focus on other, safer prospects until you get a positive signal.
This is the time when your salespeople create customized presentations and display data to prospects, to demonstrate how your offer can help them achieve their goals.
5. Your prospect does not complete any task
At this stage your team researched the prospect, and is responsible for advising them and sending them information that can help them. But you also have to make sure that your prospect does some work on his own that is:
-Educational. You ask him to read relevant information, subscribe to software, watch a video or attend an event to learn more about the topic.
-Significant. If the work is very simple, it will not determine the prospect's commitment.
-Structured. It makes it clear what process to follow, what the deadline is and any important suggestions. Don't let him get confused or waste energy wondering what to do.
6. It has not involved other stakeholders
If you have reached this stage and your prospect has not involved other team members (partners, financial directors, advisors, managers), this is a negative sign that the purchase will not go forward. In the exploration stage, sellers should ask which members have a say in the final decisions, and schedule collective meetings to present the offer.
Every contact with your prospects is important, especially when you make them aware of the value your service can bring to their business. But when it comes to priorities, it's essential that your teams focus on those prospects who have already proven to be BANT compliant: they have the budget, the authority, the need, and the timing fits both parties.
30% of salespeople say that closing sales has become more challenging compared to previous years, so it's worth having an ally to help you optimize this process. If you want to know how to qualify your prospects more effectively to generate more and more sales, our experts at Innova Marketing Solutions are ready to help you achieve it. Click here and get a free 30-minute consultation.