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As a salesperson, how often have you heard, "That's too expensive" or "I’m not sure now is the right time" when talking to prospects? If you had a nickel, right? One of the most challenging aspects of being a sales professional is learning to overcome objections like these. Objections are a part of the job, but should never be a deterrent to your success. In this blog, we'll discuss some practical strategies you can use to overcome objections in sales conversations.
A sales objection is any real or perceived barrier a lead articulates during the sales process. It's a concern they say is keeping them from making a purchase decision.
An objection is not a rejection. Rejection is an outright "no." It's a closed door. Objections leave the door open. Your prospect is indirectly or unconsciously asking you to change their mind.
Ultimately, it is an opportunity. An objection in a sales conversation usually stems from something the buyer lacks - perhaps budget, time, need, or understanding of your product's benefits. However, a savvy salesperson can overcome these objections by anticipating and preparing for them. Here are five tips for addressing objections during the sales process.
Before you even get to the point of objection, it’s important to lay the foundation of a strong working relationship with your prospects. People buy from people they know, like, and trust. When your prospects like working with you, they'll want to find a way to move the relationship forward.
Data backs this up. According to a PwC study, 73% of customers surveyed said their experience was an important factor in their purchasing decisions. This study also reported that 59% of U.S. customers would walk away from a purchase after several bad experiences. 17% would walk away after just one bad experience, even if they love the product or the company.
Get a feel for your prospect’s company culture and tailor your interactions to fit their communication and working style. You may not be able to overcome every objection, but you can create a positive experience for your prospects by building a sense of credibility, teamwork, and trust.
While building a solid working relationship, it’s essential to learn as much as possible about your prospects' wants and needs. It’s easier to overcome objections in sales when you can anticipate and then proactively address them. This comes from clearly understanding their BANT (budget, authority, need, and timing) and the priority of these factors. If you can fit your product or service into their BANT framework, you've won over any objection they may have.
For example, if you know that price tends to be a sticking point, start the sales conversation with your value proposition to justify your price early in the conversation. Or, if you know that your prospect's company has a certain set of values, like sustainability, explain how your company prioritizes the environment in your sales pitch.
You can prepare for these conversations by researching your prospect's personal and company goals. Learn about the challenges the company is currently facing, its core values, its growth strategy, and its decision-making hierarchy. The objective is to know as much about them as possible so that you can anticipate any objections they may raise. The PSA slogan "The more you know.." is very true in sales.
When you think of an objection as an opportunity, you can address it positively. Any objection is a chance to get to know your prospect better and to build trust. This is not the time to convince the prospect that their objections are wrong. Nor should you give up and recommend another vendor.
The correct response to an objection is to ask “why?” Ask questions to help you understand the reasons behind the objection. For example, is there a specific element of your product (price, functionality, implementation) your prospect is personally worried about? Is there an element missing or unneeded? Is the objection coming from another critical stakeholder?
As you find out more information, do not dismiss their concerns out of hand. Show them that you hear them and understand their position. Try to provide a solution that mitigates or eliminates their concerns.
The key to overcoming objections in sales is to use active listening skills. It's important that your prospect feels heard and understood. When they present you with an objection, repeat it back to them in your own words. Tell them that you want to make sure that you understand. You will build trust with your prospect and can better address the problem.
This key is intentionally listening. When your prospect discusses their objections, it is your job to listen to understand, not to respond. Do not interrupt them while speaking; give them the time and space to voice their concerns freely. Then you can respond appropriately.
Empathy is the "capacity to understand or feel what another person is experiencing." It is the capacity to place yourself in someone else's position. Having empathy is critical to effective sales.
In other words, sales should not be just about making money - it’s about adding value. That’s the only way to close the right types of customers quickly, and improve customer retention. The best salespeople present their product or service as a solution to the prospect's pain points. They understand their prospect's needs, interests, and objections to get that meaningful, lasting sale.
So, don't just dismiss objections as trivial or untrue, or become defensive. Instead, put yourself in your prospect's shoes, so you can help them solve the issue. Approach each objection with patience and empathy, and you will be able to address them effectively. And your prospect will appreciate your consideration and respect.
Objections are a natural part of the sales process. Every salesperson faces them. Think of an objection as a learning experience. When you successfully address a prospect's objectives, you learn to anticipate and overcome similar objections in future sales conversations. So, instead of avoiding objections, learn how to overcome them. These skills are invaluable to your endgame.
Sales coaching is extremely valuable in teaching your sales team how to handle objections. Calldrip offers sales coaching as part of our all-in-one sales enablement software. With our powerful conversational scorecards and customized KPIs, this solution is a game changer in making your sales team more successful. To learn more about Calldrip's sales coaching software, request a demo here.
Pam is a marketing and communications professional with twenty years of experience in content creation, copywriting, creative brand strategy, and brand messaging.