Selling Services – 5 x Secrets To Close More Sales
Selling services can sometimes feel a bit harder than selling other product types.
Generally, when selling services, you’re selling the invisible; an intangible outcome or result of some kind.
Compared to that of a physical product – people can see, hear or feel what they’re buying.
That’s why when selling services, you need to have a slightly different format and process to close more consistently.
In this article, you’ll learn the five important secrets to leverage when selling services, so that you can connect with your potential clients a lot deeper, consistently close more sales, and serve more people.
Selling Services – 5 x Secrets To Close More Sales
Selling Services Secret #1 – Qualification Is Your Friend
The first secret to consistently selling services, is to ensure that you qualify correctly, and you meet with decision makers.
Many Sales Professionals and Business Owners that sell professional services, spend a lot of time having consultative sales conversations with people who are not decision makers, can’t afford their services, or don’t meet their ideal niche.
Qualifying early allows you to quickly identify whether or not they’ll be the right fit for your services, and that you maintain a process where you use your time, resources, money and energy effectively.
IBM initially came up with a concept called BANT; it’s an excellent acronym to help guide you when qualifying your potential clients. BANT stands for:
- Time frame
The budget is crucial to learn early, because you don’t want to spend hours meeting with potential clients who are shopping purely on price.
Authority is important as it’ll prevent the ‘I need to speak with’ sales objection from coming up later.
The need is self-explanatory – will they actually benefit from what you sell, and is there a real demand for it?
Finally – for your reputation and to avoid legal and budget ramifications, can you perform the services they need in the time frame they require it?
To learn how to qualify correctly when selling services, check out the linked article below.
Related article: Qualifying Sales Leads – A Step By Step Guide
Selling Services Secret #2 – Positioning
Positioning yourself as a specialist and authority in your field is a must if you’re selling services.
No matter what services you’re selling; it’s likely the competition will be rife.
For this reason, you need a unique angle when speaking with your potential clients, so they feel comfortable up front that they’re in the hands of a true Sales Professional.
Most people who are selling services are seen as a commodity – they compete based on price.
The issue with this business model, is that if everyone is competing on price; you’re literally all in a race to the bottom of the barrel.
For that reason, if you’re selling services you need to master positioning yourself as a trusted authority.
There are various ways of doing this.
First – after you’ve qualified your potential client, let them know that you’ll be asking them a lot of questions, because you want to ensure you can in fact prescribe them a solution.
This eliminates the sales friction they’ll initially feel and removes the thought that you’re going to try and prematurely pitch them.
It also allows you to ask deep diving questions, which we’ll speak about shortly.
Secondly, it’s important to set expectations with your potential clients.
Let them know that it’s OK to say no if they’re not happy with your proposal, and that you’ll do the same if need be.
Furthermore; clarify that you’d like to openly talk about the opportunity of working together if they are in fact interested.
This removes two key objections from coming up later; the ‘I need to think about it’ objection, as well as the ‘I need to speak to’ objection.
To learn how to effectively position yourself as an authority when selling services, read the linked article below for more detail.
Further reading: Positioning In Sales – How To Sell Effectively
Secret #3 – Don’t Present Too Early
Another important secret when selling services, is not to sell and present too early.
The difference between Sales Professionals and Business Owners who close more clients consistently, is that they prescribe their services after they’ve had a deep dive sales conversation.
Many Sales Professionals and Business Owners ruin their chances of closing the sale, by talking about their services before they have the right to do so.
As per our article in Entrepreneur, a lot of salespeople think that they should pitch their idea, hope something sticks, and then ask for the sale.
The problem with this mindset, is that you’re approaching from a position of hope.
And your potential client knows this.
It positions you as a commodity, as it doesn’t align or speak to their desires or needs.
Instead, we recommend only presenting your solution when you have uncovered their pain points and asked enough questions to learn about their desires.
Selling Services Secret #4 – Deep Dive Into Pain
Finding pain is very important when selling services, because as mentioned – best practice is to prescribe a solution rather than pitch it instead.
To find a need when selling services, you’ll first need to learn about their previous, current and future pain points.
People buy for two reasons – to avoid pain and move towards a desired state.
There are generally three levels of pain:
- Technical issues
- An impact on their business
- What this means for them personally
Most Sales Professionals and Business Owners stay on the surface; they stay in the technical area.
The issue with this, is people make buying decisions emotionally – meaning they buy because of how it affects them personally.
Finding pain is crucial when selling services, because without identifying their pain points; you’ll be presenting a solution to something they’re not truly wanting to solve.
To learn how to find pain in a non-pushy way, read the linked article below.
Further reading: Pain Points & Sales – Your Ultimate Guide
Selling Services Secret #5 – Ask Questions That Sell
The most important part to master in the sales process if you’re selling services, is your ability to ask deep diving questions.
Asking the right questions will help you with the following:
- Learning how they buy
- Finding pain
- Handling objections
- Asking for the sale
There are open ended questions, tie down sales techniques, assumptive close questions, and many more.
Due to the sheer depth required to learn different question types, we highly recommend you read our article dedicated to asking probing questions. We’ve linked it directly below.
Further reading: Sales Probing Questions – 20 x To Ask Daily
Selling services can be a bit harder than physical products, because at times you can be selling the invisible and intangible.
These five secrets to selling services will help you win more sales, because you’ll better qualify, position yourself, and also get to the true reason as to why they want to buy change.
If you’re interested in learning how to sell more consistently, register for our 7 Day Sales Challenge here.