The Gift of Choice

My favourite area of the sales process, and one I take great pleasure in succeeding at, is closing the order.

You will often hear me say the sales process is all about control and how you can steer your prospect through your process to the desired outcome. Whilst maintaining control, you create the illusion that the prospect is making the decisions, and this makes them feel empowered.

This technique is best demonstrated by utilising the alternative close through your sales process. Give your prospect a choice of solutions to pick from while making sure each answer is a good outcome for yourself.

A good example of an appointment creation would be, “I am free on Tuesday and Friday this week, which day suits you best?” In this example, the customer feels obliged to either pick one of your suggested days or suggest an alternative themselves.  All answers lead to the creation of an appointment.

This closing procedure also works well when looking to get an answer on a big decision, for example the purchase of a new car, by giving a simple decision between two small options, both of which give you a positive decision. For example, “Is it the black or the silver you would be looking to buy?”

At some point you will want to persuade a prospect to change from what they already know. This may take the form of moving from an existing service provider to you, or trying a new product or service. In these circumstances, you can preface  your alternatives with the phrase, “What is going to be easier for you?” For example, “… staying with your existing supplier and being disappointed with results, or giving us a chance where you will get my personal attention?”

This simple preface suggests both options are easy, but positioning your solution in second place strengthens your argument and makes it very difficult for your prospect not to agree with you.

A final example of the illusion of choice is the inclusion of the magic word ‘enough’. If you sell on quantity the inclusion of this word allows you to grow your prospects’ order size on the condition you are reasonable. A great example would be a print company that typically sells 500 business cards per transaction changed their closing line to, “Would 1000 cards be enough for you?” making it possible the average order size.

Giving your prospects choice can help them make decisions easier. The magic trick is that they made the decision you helped them design. Good luck experimenting with your new skills!

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