Sales has many differences. Whether it’s selling different products to different industries that have different types of customers and different types of processes. There are often a lot of variables that change in each sales role out there. It can be hard comparing someone selling used cars for example to someone selling property, or comparing someone selling insurance to someone selling corporate software.
That being said, there are principles of sales that don’t change.Principles that remain the same as the process of selling something to someone. Understanding those basic principles can then help you master to core of selling and develop skills that can be used to sell anything to anyone.
Here I’m going to break down the 5 basic principles of selling:
1) Selling is all about relationships.
It doesn’t matter what you sell, the ability to win that sale will ultimately always result in your ability to build some form of relationship with the buyer. People buy from people and in a world full of competition it can often boil down to your ability to build a better relationship. This includes a mixture of building rapport, identifying needs, showing genuine interest, building trust and adding value.
The question you always need to ask yourself is “Why should my prospect chose me over my competition?”, with the answer not being about the product but about why they should buy from YOU personally.
2) The sale is not about your product, but their problem.
To win in sales you need to make the whole thing about their problem or their reason for buying and not about your product. Their need should always come first with your product then answering the problem they have. The key to success in sales and a principle that will count for all forms of selling is the need to identify the pain behind the buying decision. Why do they want or need this product? What problem will it solve and how will it remove this potential pain from them?
People will buy for emotional reasons which they then back up and justify with logic. The trick is to identify the problem and tap into the emotional part of the buying decision, then justify it with the value, features, benefits etc.
3) Price and value go hand in hand
You could be selling a product that throughout the competition the features rarely change, but the price does. What defines that price is the value that you create for the product and what it can offer the potential buyer. If your prospect thinks your product is expensive, it’s because you haven’t created enough value for it.
Every industry will have competition and it can often be irrelevant what the difference in price is if you can’t create and sell value. A lot of sales people get really hung up around the price and see it as a real blocker to their ability to sell. In reality the price is irrelevant if you can build up the value for the customer so they don’t feel it’s expensive.
4) There is no sale unless you can close it.
We all love a big pipeline, we all love to brag about the amazing opportunities that we’re working on, the big customers we’re targeting, the hard work we’re putting in. Unfortunately one of the key principles of selling is the reality that there is NO sale unless you close it. All of that stuff is great and part of the process, but success in sales won’t come from the size of your pipeline or the hard work you’re putting in, it comes from actually selling!
It doesn’t matter what you’re selling, where you’re selling or who you’re selling too, your ability to succeed in sales will always come down to your ability to close deals and actually sell!
5) Those who listen, win.
We’ve all heard the “2 ears 1 mouth” quote but it’s such a powerful and important principle for success in selling. It’s only by listening that you build relationships, it’s only by listening that you identify real problems and buyer pains, it’s only by listening that you can find buying signals and close the sale.
The best sales people are those who are good listeners, who still control the conversation but who know how to ask the right questions and effectively listen to get the information they need to progress the sale.
If YOU could add ONE more principle that is crucial to succeeding in sales, what would it be? Please write it in the comments box below and don’t worry if someone else has written it, it will be good to see how many we can add to the list.