You can invest all your time and money into building a great product but at the end of the day, your success depends on your close techniques. You’re generating tons of leads, making compelling calls, and sending cold emails, but can you close the deal on the spot? Check out these kickass close techniques and close more deals from now on.
It’s now or never
Also known as the scarcity close, in this approach, you need to estimate the potential client’s level of urgency accurately. Your goal is to play the prospect’s fear of missing out (FOMO). It might be that the product inventory is running dangerously low or the promo code is expiring after a certain date. Whatever the reason, if they don’t close the deal now, there are no guarantees that the same offer will stand later.
The problem with this technique is that if the prospect hasn’t shown a strong or urgent interest in your special deal, the approach can backfire. Especially if you can’t play the scarcity card. To make it work, you need to make sure the prospect wants to purchase but needs a little push to close the deal.
Let’s take a look at how a now or never close plays out for an event planning business.
“At the moment we have availability to plan your anniversary on June 1. We understand that you want to look at other companies. However, I must tell you that the date is in high demand, so I can’t guarantee the spot will be open after today. I would love to complete your contract today, so we can get you on the schedule for June.”
If they say yes, send them a personalized proposal where you’ll specify your services, timeline, and guarantee.
Our library has over 79 free proposal templates for a variety of industries you can use. Each proposal is professionally written and designed for maximum conversions.
These digital proposals look like an extension of your website. They display and scroll perfectly on all devices, ensuring your prospects can open and read them the moment you send your offer.
If you enable the live chat, you can get in touch with your prospects as they’re reading the proposal. This way you can address all the possible questions right there and then – in other words, bring the issue to a close.
Give a summary
The summary close might appear weak at first, but it’s highly effective in situations where the prospect is entertaining offers from multiple companies.
In this case, the prospect might have got lost in all the key features and prices and needs a bit of reminding. The summary approach is where you remind the prospect about the benefits of your product such as features, service, availability, price, etc. It states why your product is the best for solving their pain points. You’re repeating the terms of the offer by helping them visualize the whole package.
A summary close would look something like this:
“For your anniversary of 200 people, our event planning includes catering, venue decoration, serving staff, musical entertainment, a full setup, and breakdown. Would you like to add anything else before we confirm the contract?”
Make an assumption
The assumptive close is one of the most popular closing techniques but to pull it off, you need to be confident the prospect is ready to buy. That’s because this technique is based on an assumption – you assume that the sale is close and only a few details remain to be decided.
In this case, you want to be assertive without being too aggressive. It will scare the prospect away. Your best chance is a summary close where you’d sum up all the terms and benefits of your pitch.
Then, you can ease into the assumptive close by saying something like:
“We’ve agreed that our event planning falls well within your anniversary budget for 200 people. It also includes free delivery and serving time at 13:00. What time do you want our team to arrive to start setting things up?”
Take the sharp angle
When it comes to closing, prospects may be pushing for additional products or services or looking for a generous discount. In those cases, you should be ready to negotiate. If you have the liberty to make decisions and know what you can offer to sweeten the deal, this one should be easy.
On the other hand, if any add-ons and freebies need to be approved by your sales manager, it might delay the closing and lose the deal altogether.
So how does a sharp angle close work? In the event planning example. The prospect may ask:
“Can you provide discounted balloon decorations?”
You may respond with a closing question:
“Sure, we can provide those at a 25% discount, but if I include that in the offer, will you sign the contract today?”
Why is this approach so effective?
You’ve managed to meet the prospect’s request – but on the condition that you close the deal immediately. Some will say this approach is too “salesy” but in reality, it meets all the criteria of a successful close – the prospect agrees that you’ve met all their needs so it’s OK to ask the closing question at one point.
Ask a question
The art of selling often boils down to good listening. The best sales professionals keep asking questions throughout the engagement and pay attention to the prospect’s responses. Even at the final stage of closing a deal. Asking questions can be a great way to finalize a sale.
For example, you can repeat all the terms of the offer and ask the prospect:
“Does this contract cover all the needs for your event? Did we get all the details correct? Are the time and date good?“
By doing this you achieve several things. First, you encourage the prospect to sign the deal by admitting you’ve met all of their requests. Also, it opens up possibilities for additional sales, such as more products and services the prospect might have forgotten to mention. At this point, you can even sweeten the deal by offering a product sample or an extended trial of services.
Finally, this approach is a great way to directly guide the prospect to sign the contract without being too pushy or desperate. Kind of a win-win situation.
Let them visualize
Sales strategy and tactics routinely follow how the human brain works. If you help the prospects visualize what they are purchasing, and have the means to sum it up in a brief form, they have an easy job understanding what they’re buying and why.
In other words, they need to see what you’re offering. More than 90% of people interact with the world and make decisions based on visual input data.
Research from 3M reveals that the human brain processes image 60,000 times faster than words. So, captivating visuals are the quickest chance to get to your potential client’s brains.
At Better Proposals, we know that seeing is believing.
This is why every proposal in our library starts with a beautifully designed cover to set the mood for what waits inside. We’re not skimping on visual aspects either.
Apart from high-quality images – which you’re free to replace with your own – now you can even embed a video of your product or service to run in the background as your prospects read the proposal.
Show them the puppy
The so-called puppy close is a technique where you allow the prospect to test the product or service before agreeing to close a deal. Instead of hearing from others how your product is great, they can try it themselves.
The name comes from the strategy that pet shops use to sell puppies.
- A family enters a pet shop and a child falls in love with a puppy.
- The kid wants to bring the puppy home, but the parents aren’t so sure about it.
- The owner says something like, “Why font you take it home for the weekend and see what happens?”
- The family takes the dog home where the little bugger wins the hearts of everybody in the house so mom and dad agree to go through with the sale.
You should give this method a chance for two reasons:
- Prospects can decide their pace, without feeling pressure to decide there and then.
- They can have an authentic experience with the product that shows them how it benefits their day-to-day workflow.
Before offering a trial you need to decide how the customers will test your products. A great example I’ve heard about is Warby Parker, a glasses company that sends their customers sample frames with non-prescription lenses. They can pick the frames they like, try them on for a week, and send the samples back for a working pair.
At Better Proposals, we offer a 14-day free trial for our proposal building software. This way our prospects can see for themselves how easy it is to create an engaging proposal that looks good on mobile as it does on desktop.
The “Ben Franklin” close
The lore says Ben Franklin used to make decisions by creating a list of pros and cons and based his choice on the longer one. As a matter of fact, Bonhomme Richard used this method to persuade people to his side of an argument.
If your clients are analytical personalities, your best chances are to compile a list of your product’s advantages and disadvantages in advance. The catch is to encourage them to make a decision based on the stronger list.
Just to be on the safe side, make sure the pros list is at least 2-3x more valuable than the list of cons.
Share in empathy
Emotions are a way to power. Sales professionals often use emotions and empathy to reel in customers. When emotion takes the lead, the reason is in the backseat.
So what do you do?
Relate your product’s benefits and aspects to solving customers’ problems. Make it clear that you care about their pain and you’ll win their hearts if not minds.
Take a walk in their shoes to understand their situation completely. Present the same kind of problem that you encountered. Say something like:
“It makes so much sense to men now. This solution has worked so well for me.”
Take the role of a matchmaker who is bringing a great product to a worthy customer. Then, when they are empathizing back, you decide what’s best for them like they would decide.
Take it away
The take-away close is another proven method that draws from human psychology. Here’s how it goes: You introduce attractive features, then offer to reject them for the sake of something else, perhaps more interesting.
I’m sure you’ve seen Taxi Driver. Remember the scene where De Niro’s character is buying guns from Easy Andy?
The first gun that Andy shows him is the mean ass .44 magnum:
“They use this in Africa for killing elephants. For you, I recommend something more practical, like this .38 snub-nose revolver.”
From that moment on, the gun dealer knew that Travis Bickle wouldn’t settle for anything less than the .44 mag.
In this situation, the customers don’t want to lose what they almost had. They don’t want to lose anything on their wish list so they proceed to purchase the products.
“Just one more thing” a.k.a. the Columbo close
This close technique comes from a classic 1970s TV show, Columbo, whose main protagonist, detective Columbo, was famous for appearing to end an interrogation before turning around and nailing the suspect by asking, “Just one more thing…”
In the world of sales, you can use this technique to uncover a hidden objection that’s holding up the sale in the pipeline. Once you’ve made it clear the meeting has come to an end, slip in a question that strikes the heart of the matter and gives you valuable information.
Here’s one example:
“Now that the presentation is over, may I ask just one more thing? Off the record. Why didn’t you buy from me today?”
Being skilled at closing is hands-down the most valuable technique a salesperson can learn. Yet, many software solutions help you close deals like a pro.
Speaking of which, why don’t you take Better Proposals for a spin?
Book a demo and see how our interactive web-based proposals help you seal more deals while automating the whole process.