"You can create a story that resonates and ticks all the checkboxes narratively, but it’s the data that takes those top sales reps over the top."
ST Report Rising Stars 320

Closing the Sale: How the Top 1% Sales Reps Do It

Closing the sale is the moment of truth, the final confirmation of whether or not your efforts have been fruitful. For many salespeople, it’s a make-or-break situation which more often than not, doesn’t end well. It’s the number one priority for businesses, according to HubSpot, followed by improving the efficiency throughout the sales funnel.

Sales prioritiesSource: HubSpot

The top 1% sales reps don’t have these problems; they usually have strong, defined abilities that set them apart from the rest of the pack. They easily connect with their prospects, slide down the pipeline, and close deals without breaking a sweat. What makes them so successful? Here’s a look at a few closing sales tips and techniques (especially relevant if you’re selling SaaS) that will shed some light into their day-to-day sale-closing habits.

They listen and ask the right questions

The picture of a stereotypical sales rep is usually that of an overly talkative person that almost seems like they’re paid by the word. If that’s how you conduct closing sales, chances are you’re missing out on opportunities. Great sales representatives are also great listeners. During the length of the sales cycle, prospects will drop clues regarding their stance on you and your product or service. This is the information that will make it much easier for you to ask the right questions at the right time, gain trust, and obtain additional information needed to close the sale, as well as eliminate any objection to purchasing. The point is to make interaction a new chance for data collection. By keeping a keen ear to prospect’s specific pain points, you’ll be able to create targeted messaging around how you can serve specific needs. It will make connecting your value proposition much easier and ultimately present a bonafide solution to their problem.

They know the ins and outs of the buying process

Taking a step back to listen and ask the right questions leads down a path to more detailed knowledge of every prospect’s buying habits and process. What separates the best from the rest is their understanding that the entire sales cycle is a process that involves a number of commitments, starting from qualifying prospects to moving them to the bottom of the sales funnel. Naturally, some prospects need more time to come to a decision or simply demo your product/service longer, while others commit to a purchase quicker. In either case, catering to them throughout the sale process and focusing on their needs will help move the deal to the end zone.

B2B Buying processSource: CustomerThink

They draw their power from business intelligence

When closing the sale, sales reps at the very top of the pyramid have all their bases covered. Because they are really good at presenting their sales pitch, they ooze efficiency in getting there. They know the product or service they’re selling to a T, as well as their competition and their offering. They are constantly in the know, tracking competitors extensively while keeping a close eye on emerging companies. This allows them to stay ahead of the game and outsell the competition because they possess extensive knowledge regarding their product or service.

You see, different closing techniques rely on different factors. In some cases, well-timed questions will open an opportunity to hammer out a deal. Other times, it’s about crafting a message that creates a sense of emergency. All the cool and suave talk will only get you so far without data. In particular, the constant fluctuations in the B2B environment warrants gathering as much intelligence as possible due to the increasingly data-driven development of the B2B buying process. You can create a story that resonates and ticks all the checkboxes narratively, but it’s the data that takes those top sales reps over the top. When all’s said and done, the numbers don’t lie.

Sales data broken down by a prospect, product/service, historical sales, and so on will make sure you are prepared for demands and questions your prospect might have. There’s nothing a good SIP (sales insight platform) can’t cover, be it market research, lead generation, customer retention, or something else to deliver accurate and timely data in your hands.

The top 1% are also super efficient with their time, all in order to make the most out of each day. Looking for the decision-maker within an organization? Here’s an advanced email discovery list based on typing their name and company. Not sure which lead is worth pursuing? Assess their potential efficiently with lead generation and qualification tools. These days, automation through big data analytics is key to efficient time management and data-based decision-making.

They never stop trying and learning

Among the most successful sales reps or business owners, one rather distinguishing feature is the perseverance to succeed. Most reps have a tendency to give up far too easily or too soon. B2B prospects are typically busy and they really want to talk, it’s just that sometimes it’s not a good time. That shouldn’t discourage you to try a few times and keep your name somewhere in the back of their minds. The best reps are persistent- they keep trying until they get an audience, but they also know when to stop and walk away (not to mention they have a trained nose when the prospect isn’t about to convert). That way, they waste less time running around disinterested buyers and instead focus on deals that are most likely to close.

In the same fashion, the cream of the crop of sales reps is always improving themselves by reading relevant sales books, following and adopting new trends, learning new skills, and fine-tuning their own selling abilities. By contrast, HubSpot Research’s survey of salespeople revealed that more than half rely on their peers to get tips for improving. The very top salespeople are never content with themselves and always strive to push their limits.

Closing the sale 1%-style

Creating a best way to close a sale requires incorporating many details and tactics into your strategy. Developing a deep understanding of your potential customer’s business is crucial, as is finding their pain points and showing them where your product or service fits in. All of this should be powered by numbers, the irrefutable data that can reveal actionable insights during every stage of the sales cycle. By implementing these points, you’ll learn how to close sales effectively and make your way to the top.