There are many actions we can take to help our buyers move through the selling process to the buy decision. And while there are many things we should do, there is one thing you should NEVER domake the selling process more difficult than the buyer wants or needs.

That’s right, if you want to chase away your sales opportunities, make the buying process complicated or irrelevant and take more time, energy, or effort than needed.

Though this is one big Not To Do, there are many ways we complicate our selling:

  • Giving too much information—either by mouth or in print.
  • Not giving enough relevant information which makes them have to do research for themselves.
  • Not listening and missing the cues the buyer is sending.
  • Having no clear outcome or action defined for a meeting.
  • Lack of preparation and research which makes the buyer need to explain information that could have been gathered in other ways.
  • Making assumptions that waste time.

easyI’ve been guilty of all of these actions at one time or another. But a recent situation where I was the buyer and recipient of many of these actions is what reminded of me of the power of making it easy for the buyer. 

A month into the sales process  for purchasing a new service and after many different conversations, demos, and too many additional questions (once 4 new calls in one day!) I interrupted the conversation to say,

“Okay, we need to stop. I have asked for information that I need in order to make a decision for a month now, I committed time today because I was told you would have the information ready, and now you’ve added yet another person to the process who is asking me the same questions I have answered for you since the first time we spoke. When you have that information let me know and I’ll take it into consideration.”

After a bunch of stammering, we ended the call.

Guess where that sale is? Stalled.

Yup, after initially being very excited about the product and what it could do for me; I was so irritated and stressed about the time and energy I had spent so far. I was also feeling let down and dragged down soI haven’t made the time to review what was finally sent. And guess who is paying the biggest price for not getting the product? Me!

While I’m sure the seller would have liked the sale quite honestly I would’ve really liked the product as well and continue to get what I need less efficiently.

How can you know how the buyer wants to buy? ASK them! Not just once but through the entire process. 

Ask them what they need, how they want the information, when they want it, be very clear on the next steps, and who is doing what by when.

Then make sure you listen to their answer and help them buy in the way that works for them!

Adjust your selling process (or the sales conversations you have control over) to the buyer and make it easy for them to buy from you.

Honoring the buyer’s need for data, detail, and timing also leads to repeat business and referrals and stops the buyer from running to your competitors.

Your Turn! What do you to ensure you make it easy for your buyers to get through the selling process? Leave a comment and you’ll be entered into a drawing for a signed copy of the Conversations That Sell book.

Congratulations to Roger Hurst for winning the last copy for his comment on this blog.