Research says only 1 out of 50 deals are made in the first meeting, but many sales people give up after only one or two set backs. To get the edge on competitors you need to have perseverance.
There are times when you are so focused on your business that you can miss the simplest solutions for growing it. This is where the biggest opportunities frequently lie. These solutions are very obvious, once you are aware of them, but are some of the best kept secrets if you are not. For example:
Business people expect and hope to do business at the first meeting with a client, however, studies show that only 2% of sales actually happen on the first meeting.
Usually the 2% that do buy on the first meeting are those that have already looked into the product or service and already know what they are looking for. If the sales person can check all the right boxes and they are comfortable, then a transaction takes place. However, that is certain not typical. The 98% of other clients only buy when they are confident and a certain trust level has been built.
Anyone is sadly mistaken if they think they will walk in and easily close a sale. The professional sales people understand what their customer’s needs are. They get to know the client, provide solutions to their problems,and proof to back it up. They build up trust and engage an ongoing communication (also known as follow-up). They do not just push their products and services with an arsenal of deal closing tricks.
Customer’s have many reasons not to buy, even though they could benefit from your service, product, or expertise. For example, they may have limited time available at that time, too many tasks on their mind, cost concerns, budget constraints, or maybe cash flow issues. Sometimes you fail to market your business enough to establish your name in your field, and the customer does not feel comfortable purchasing without question. Those reasons are not necessarily negative. They are just realities that you need to be aware of, which is why it is so imperative to follow-up with your potential clients.
Think of the times that you have expressed an interest in a service or product, and then never heard from that company again. It happens quite frequently. Actually, research shows that only 20% of sales leads ever receive a follow-up. So, that means 80% of potential buying opportunities are lost just due to the lack of a follow-up.
If there isn’t a follow-up with the customer, there is nothing done to build trust and a relationship. In today’s economy with the competition out there, companies will not succeed. People want to be sure that they are making good buying decisions before they will commit to purchasing.
Multiple studies by different market research companies show that 80% of sales that are non-routine happen after at least five follow-ups.
Take a moment and ponder that. It takes five follow-up efforts after your first contact with the customer before a purchase is made!
Here are some other interesting statistics on this:
This means that 92% of sales people stop pursuing a sale after four “no’s”, and a small 8% even ask for a fifth time.
When you think about the fact that 80% of potential clients will say “no” four times before they say “yes”, then that 8% are getting the 80% of the sales.
Once you realize these statistics, you then can stack the odds in your favor. You do this by setting up a ‘Five No’s’ strategy, where you keep in contact with your potential clients until each has said “no”, or “not now”, or “maybe another time” at least five times. Every single time you are in communication you have the chance to advance the customer relationship.
Companies that have the “Five No’s” strategy have a much higher rate of conversation than their competitors who don’t. Do you have strategies in your business now to make sure you are contacting your prospects on a regular basis? Think about what ways you can regularly contact potential clients in a meaningful and simple way so you can obtain their loyalty of business.
About 63% of people who are requesting further information on your business don’t plan to make a purchase for at least three months. On top of that, 20% take more than a year to buy.
When you contact your prospective buyer and also current customers every three months and even sooner, this builds a level of professionalism and confidence that keeps your business at the “top of mind” of your potential customer. Customers do not consider contacts regarding payments, order confirmations, or the annual Christmas card as meaningful ways of contact.
An example of a meaningful communication strategy needs to put into place. Do you have one in your business to keep top of mind awareness with those in contact with you? In what ways do you take care of your clients so they trust you and consider you as a professional organization?
Using this simple strategy is critical to the longevity of your business in this current economy. Put the strategy into place and grow and prosper your business.