9 Sales Closing Techniques That’ll Make You the Best Salesperson on Your Team

12 min read
Nov 3, 2023
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So, you've made it through the initial stages of the sales process. The pitch went well, rapport was built, and there was mutual interest. But now, you’re approaching the moment of truth—the close. This isn't just any stage — it's THE stage. Feel that flutter in your stomach? That’s because a lot is riding on this, emotionally speaking.

The significance of closing in sales

Closing a deal is akin to that final scene in a movie where everything comes to a head. It's filled with anticipation, hopes, and the sheer weight of everything you've invested. All those hours spent understanding the client's needs, crafting the perfect proposal, and ironing out the kinks – it all boils down to this. It's not just about numbers or hitting targets — it’s personal. A successful close validates your efforts and boosts your confidence, and, for many, it's the adrenaline rush that keeps the passion alive.

But wait, there's a plot twist. 

Just as you’ve been honing your sales skills, buyers have been evolving too. They've become more autonomous in their buying journey. Have you noticed how today's buyers love to do their own research, compare options, read reviews, and often, decide even before reaching out to sales reps? This shift towards self-serving means they're now more informed and empowered. They often know exactly what they want and how they want it. While this can be a challenge, it’s also an opportunity. It means that when they do come to you, they're already halfway there.

This change in buyer behavior underscores the importance of being not just a salesperson but an advisor. Someone who understands their journey, can add value, and guide them through the final steps with authenticity. The modern buyer craves genuine connection, trust, and transparency.

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The whys and hows of sales closing techniques

If you're aiming to master the art of closing, you're in for a treat. These techniques, when used correctly, can be your golden ticket to winning clients and building trust.

1. The assumptive close — acting like it's a done deal

You know when you're so sure of something that you just act on it? That's the spirit of the assumptive close. At its core, it operates on a simple premise: you assume the sale is already made. This isn’t about being presumptuous or pushy. Instead, it’s about demonstrating confidence in the value of what you're offering and naturally guiding the conversation towards the next steps.

Imagine you're test-driving a car, and the salesperson says, "How would you like the car to be serviced before you pick it up next week?" They're not asking if you're buying — they're asking how you'd like your new car prepped.

Relevance in today's sales landscape

You might wonder, "Is this technique still relevant?" Absolutely. In today’s fast-paced world, customers appreciate clarity and decisiveness. They’re often looking for affirmation in their purchase decisions. The assumptive close can offer that gentle nudge, reaffirming their choice. It signals that you believe in what you're selling and, by extension, boosts their confidence in the purchase.

However, a word of caution: it's essential to read the room. This technique thrives when the prospect already demonstrates a significant level of interest. If overused or used prematurely, it might come off as too forward.

2. Showcasing what’s on the line with the opportunity cost close 

By now, we probably all know what fear of missing out (FOMO) is. Whether it's skipping a party that turns out to be the event of the year or passing up on a limited-time sale, the regret can be real. That's the psychological backbone of the opportunity cost close. 

This sales closing technique highlights what the prospect stands to lose if they don't act. Instead of solely focusing on the benefits of your product or service, you shine a spotlight on what they might miss out on or the potential disadvantages of not purchasing. You could use the opportunity cost close by demonstrating how not choosing your product could lead to higher costs or less efficiency in the long run.

Relevance in today's sales landscape

In a world of endless choices and fierce competition, customers are often paralyzed by options. The opportunity cost close can serve as a clarifying lens, helping them understand the tangible and intangible costs of not making a choice.

Make sure that this technique doesn't veer into the realm of undue pressure, though. The goal is not to induce anxiety but to offer perspective. It's most effective when you genuinely believe that your solution is in the best interest of the prospect and that they could regret missing out. Consider painting a picture of the opportunity cost. Sometimes, the prospect needs to see not just what they could gain but what they might lose to make that confident step forward. 

3. The try before you buy close

This technique is all about letting the product or service speak for itself. You give prospects a chance to experience what you’re offering without the initial commitment of purchasing. Once they see the benefits firsthand, the theory goes, they'll be more inclined to buy.

The try before you buy close is widely used by B2B software vendors offering free trials of their products and services, but you can also see it used in your daily life. Think about platforms like Netflix or Spotify offering a one-month free trial. Once you've binged a few series or created your own playlists, the thought of discontinuing can feel like a loss.

Relevance in today's sales landscape

In an era where consumers are bombarded with choices, the "try before you buy" approach can be a game-changer. It cuts through the noise, letting the product or service make its own case. This technique builds trust, showcases transparency, and reduces the perceived risk for the buyer.

In essence, this technique banks on the idea that once someone experiences the value firsthand, they're more likely to commit. And with consumers seeking authenticity and tangible value, this approach can be a surefire winner. It's crucial to ensure that what you're offering in the trial or sample truly represents the best of your product or service. A subpar trial experience can backfire, driving the prospect away.

4. Give and take with the sharp angle close 

You probably been in situations where you're inches away from sealing the deal, but the prospect throws a curveball—a special request or a condition. How you respond could be the difference between closing and losing. 

The sharp angle close is all about agility in negotiation. When a prospect makes a last-minute request, you agree to it, but in return, you ask for the close. It's a tactic that transforms their request into a mutual agreement, emphasizing the give-and-take nature of the deal.

If a prospect asks for a minor concession or add-on, you grant it but only on the condition that they'll commit to the purchase. A customer might say, "Can you throw in an extra phone case with this smartphone?" Your response could be, "I can do that for you if we finalize the purchase right now. How does that sound?"

Relevance in today's sales landscape

In a market where customization and personalized service are increasingly valued, the sharp angle close shines brightly. Modern customers expect their unique needs to be met, and this technique allows you to cater to those while also ensuring a favorable outcome for your business.

There's a fine line between a strategic concession and compromising your product or service's value. It's crucial to ensure that what you're offering as a “give” doesn't undermine the overall value or sustainability of the deal.

The sharp angle close is more than just a tactical move—it's a reflection of adaptability and responsiveness in sales. It’s about showcasing that you’re attuned to your prospect's needs while also driving home the value of what you’re offering.

5. Letting curiosity seal the deal with the question close

You're in a shoe store, trying on a sleek new pair of runners. The salesperson, noticing your uncertainty, pops a simple question: "Can you see yourself hitting the track with these tomorrow?" Suddenly, you're not just trying on shoes — you're envisioning your next workout. This is the power of the question close

The essence of the question close lies in using carefully framed questions to guide your prospect towards making a buying decision. Instead of telling them what to think or do, you're encouraging them to reach that conclusion on their own through introspection by asking questions that help the buyer imagine the product's benefits in their own life.

Relevance in today's sales landscape

With consumers flooded with information and choices, being too pushy can often backfire. The question close offers a softer, more engaging approach. It respects the buyer's autonomy, allowing them to feel they're making an informed decision, not just being “sold to”.

By encouraging consumers to reflect on their needs and desires, you're providing a unique personalized experience. This technique capitalizes on the psychological principle that people are more committed to the conclusions they reach on their own.

Be sure your questions come from a genuine place of curiosity and interest. The modern consumer is adept at sniffing out insincerity. It's not about manipulating but facilitating an introspective journey.

6. Visuals worth a thousand words — the video close

You've heard it countless times: "Seeing is believing." By merging the power of visual storytelling with the convenience of technology, this sales closing technique can be your game-changer.

The video close leverages video content to explain, showcase, or clarify product offerings, pricing, testimonials, or any other aspect of the sales process. It's about providing that dynamic, engaging touch when static words might not do the trick. If you sell beauty products, instead of just describing the effects of a skincare product, brands use videos to demonstrate the transformation. Think: "Watch how our serum reduces wrinkles in just two weeks!"

Relevance in today's sales landscape:

The modern consumer often multitasks and skims through vast amounts of information daily. Videos, with their combination of visuals, sound, and motion, can break through this noise, grabbing attention and effectively conveying the message.

With platforms like YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram emphasizing video content, consumers have grown accustomed to consuming information this way. They not only expect it but often prefer it.

7. The scarcity close and the allure of limited availability

Remember when you've been on the fence about buying those concert tickets, and then you see "Only 5 seats left!" and suddenly, you're scrambling for your credit card? That's the power of the scarcity close in action. It's a psychological trigger, highlighting the limited nature of an offering to create urgency.

The scarcity close hinges on the principle that people value things more when they're perceived as scarce. By emphasizing limited availability or a dwindling timeframe, this technique stirs FOMO, prompting quicker decision-making.

Relevance in today's sales landscape:

With endless choices and instant gratification all around us, creating a sense of urgency is more potent than ever. The scarcity close leverages the innate human desire to have something rare, unique, or fleeting.

With real-time updates and notifications becoming the norm, businesses can instantaneously inform consumers about limited offers or dwindling stock, making the scarcity close even more impactful.

Overusing this technique or creating false scarcity can backfire, eroding trust and credibility. Ensure that the scarcity you're highlighting is genuine. Misleading your customers might offer short-term gains, but in the long run, it can tarnish your brand's reputation.

8. Mastering the art of "less is more" with the takeaway close

This technique revolves around the principle of suggesting that a particular product or deal might not be available for the prospect. By hinting at the potential of retracting an offer, you create a heightened sense of value and urgency around it.

If you're a realtor, you might say, "Another interested buyer is considering this property. They're ready to pay upfront, so I'm not sure if this offer will stand tomorrow."

Relevance in today's sales landscape:

When everything is within reach, suggesting that something might slip away is a powerful tool. But here's the thing: People are smart. With access to a world of information at their fingertips, consumers can often discern genuine offers from manipulative tactics. This means that while the takeaway close can be incredibly effective, it must be used judiciously and authentically.

When executed with genuine intent and a real value proposition, this technique can tilt the scales in your favor. It's all about balancing the allure of potential loss with the genuine value of your offer. So, the next time you feel a prospect is on the fence, consider giving them a glimpse of what life might be like without your stellar product or deal. But remember, the trick is in the authenticity of the takeaway.

9. Bringing it all together with the summary close 

The summary close is about consolidating all the pivotal points discussed during the sales pitch, emphasizing the benefits and value of the product or service. It's a way to refresh the prospect's memory and underline why your offering is the best fit for their needs. You can do this in a few different ways:

Relevance in today's sales landscape:

In an era of information overload, it’s incredibly easy for prospects to feel overwhelmed or even forget crucial details discussed earlier. That’s where the summary close shines. By revisiting the key takeaways, you reinforce the value proposition and show your prospects that you’ve attentively listened to their needs.

However, as with all techniques, it's essential to gauge the room. If your prospect appears eager to close the deal, overly elongating with a summary might break the momentum. On the other hand, for those who seem hesitant or lost in the myriad of details, a well-placed summary can be the beacon leading them to a confident decision.

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Here's what's next for you

The playbook's in your hands now. It's one thing to understand these sales closing techniques and another to implement them. Sales, at its core, is about connections, solutions, and growth. With these insights tucked into your belt, you're poised to elevate your sales game to new heights.

Go on, take these techniques and tips for a spin. Flex those sales muscles, refine your approach, and watch as you meet and exceed those targets. Because, in the end, sales is as much about personal growth as it is about numbers.