Assumptive Closing Statements For Essays
Learn How to Use the Assumptive Close in Sales
When is it okay to assume?
We've all heard the saying that we should never assume. Assuming can set you up for disappointment, cause you to stop listening to your clients and to not be as thorough as you should be during a sales cycle. But all these "rules" go out the window when it comes to effectively using the assumptive close.
As powerful and as effective as the assumptive close can be, you'd better be prepared during each step of the sales cycle or this close won't end in a close at all.
Assuming a sale that you haven't earned is akin to conceit, which is one of the most damaging traits for any sales professional.
The Assumptive Close
If you begin a sales cycle assuming that the prospect is going to buy your product or service, and you subtly let your prospect know that you are assuming that they will become a customer, you are employing the "assumptive closing" technique.
Sounds pretty simple, right? Well, it is but there are a few things to keep in mind when using the assumptive close.
Your State of Mind
Funny thing about having positive expectations whenever you enter a sales opportunity: Things seem to work out more favorably. Maybe there are some cosmic or divine forces at work or maybe being positive just puts you in a more resourceful mind-space. The more positive you are, the fewer fears or reservations you have. If there is one thing sure to kill a sale, it is doubt.
You also approach each step in the sales process with more enthusiasm, more energy, and more confidence.
These traits are contagious and often have positive effects on all you come in contact with. People, in general, prefer to spend time with positive people and avoid those who are negative. Using an assumptive process that develops positive traits not only has positive effects on those with whom you interact but has been shown to have significant benefits to you that permeate all areas of your life.
Assuming that your prospect sees the benefits of your product or service gives you a distinct advantage. While your assumptions may be completely wrong, your confidence can be contagious and may be all that is needed to pull your prospect out of the prospect column and into the customer column. It is important to note, however, that assuming too much may backfire. You need to use frequent "temperature checks" of your customer to make sure that she is following along with your assumptions.
Your Customer's State of Mind
In general, people love to buy things but do not like to be sold things. When dealing with a sales professional who feels they need to a prospect through each step of the sales cycle, people have a natural tendency to push back, become suspicious and often end up not buying anything at all. However, when someone feels they are being guided by a confident sales professional who seems to understand them, people often times follow the lead of the sales professional. Your main task is to lead them towards a sale that benefits them and you.
The wonderful thing about the assumptive closing technique is that it is very low pressure. Instead of trying to convince a prospect to do something, you assume that they want to and agree with moving forward.
This only works if you've done your job thoroughly in each sales step and have the right to assume the sale. Do a poor job of prospecting, qualifying, delivering value or any of the steps in a sales cycle and your assumptive close turns into a pompous push.
If you find yourself having to employ "hard close" techniques, should serve as an indication that you have not done a good job with one or more steps in the sales process. Using the assumptive closing technique to move from one sales step to the next works extremely well once your customer sees enough value to invest more time and energy.
A Final Word
The Assumptive Close has many benefits to both the sales professional and the customer. Not only can the sales process be enjoyable, rewarding and easy, the process can also be much shorter.
Getting to "Yes" is the goal of every sales professional. The quicker you can get to "yes," the quicker you can get on to the next sale.
In the first paragraph of this article, it was suggested that the assumptive close allows you to throw away the critical factors that you follow during a sales cycle. After reading, you're probably wondering, "So, what are those things I can do away with if I use the assumptive close?" The answer is, actually, none. In fact, you need to listen even more closely to what your client is saying.
With buyers more cautious than ever, you need to have an arsenal of closing techniques if you’re going to win more deals.
Over many years of training and coaching, my company has taught sales people to successfully alleviate buyer concerns, gain commitment and close more sales with the following 7 Killer Closing Techniques.
The Trial Close
The Trial Close is the most common closing technique used by sales professionals. It’s a great way of testing the buyer’s intent and can be used at any stage of the sales process to make sure that you’re on the right track to gaining a commitment.
“Does everything we have talked about today satisfy your needs?”
“If we can overcome this issue by lunchtime, would you be prepared to sign the contract?”
“If we satisfy that requirement, would you be willing to commit your resources to making the deal go ahead by the end of this month?”
Use it to check that you’re meeting the buyer’s needs, that the buyer has no objections and that the buyer is willing to commit to taking the sale forward.
With this technique you should be looking for a green light from the prospect to enable you to move on to the next stage of the sale.
The Direct Close
A Direct Close is a straightforward request for the buyer to commit to making the purchase. It should therefore only be used when you’re confident that the prospect is ready to buy.
Only use this closing technique when you’re certain that the prospect has a burning desire for your solution or if you already have a good relationship with the prospect that entitles you to be so direct with your request.
“Can I ask you to sign the order today?”
“Now that everything is agreed, will you commit to signing the contract right now?”
Be cautious if you intend to apply a Direct Close. The prospect may view your confidence as misplaced and could quickly stereotype you as just another pushy sales person.
The Pressure Close
The Pressure Close is one of our favourite closing techniques at Sterling Chase. It is a great close to apply when you have already created a compelling event in your prospect’s mind that forces them to realise that they have a need for your solution and they can’t fail to act in time.
Examples of a Pressure Close:
“So that you comply with the upcoming regulatory requirements for recording sales calls, can we agree to sign the contract today? This will help us to get back on track for meeting the solution’s deadline.”
“To cope with the difficult economic conditions affecting your industry, can we agree to sign the contract today?”
The Pressure Close can be used in almost any situation in which an external factor that is out of the buyer’s control (such as new regulations or tough economic conditions) will cause them internal pain unless they purchase your solution. It’s important to combine this closing technique with the Trial Close to ensure that you’re in a position to influence the prospect without them feeling pressured into the sale. Our advice to less experienced salespeople is that, if you’re going to focus on a couple of closing techniques, practice and implement combinations of the Trial and Pressure Closes.
The Negotiated Close
The Negotiated Close should be used to overcome any unreasonable objections or demands. This is a great closing technique to use with prospects who like to haggle for every last ounce of value and challenge you at every turn. It can also be used when you know that a prospect’s request is outside the scope of your proposal and/or capabilities.
Example of a Negotiated Close:
“If we sign the contract today, we can start work on these concerns first thing tomorrow morning. Is that something you would be willing to commit to?”
This example may seem evasive but it can really work if you show enough enthusiasm to take the sale forward and convince the buyer that their concerns are merely hurdles which can be overcome.
The Alternative Close
The Alternative Close can be a powerful closing technique, particularly if you sense that the prospect is not satisfied with the solution that you intend to offer them.
Examples of an Alternative Close:
“Do you want the contract to contain the first or the second option when we sign today?”
“Which of these three solutions works best for you?”
“Shall we proceed to the next stage of the sale this week or next week?”
A lot of buyers like choices at the point of sale. The Alternative Close provides them with other options when they show signs of discontent with the solution that is initially proposed. Alternative options could be offered in the form of added value or an entirely separate product that is shaped to meet their specific needs. But remember, most prospects don’t like to be presented with too many choices so use your judgement to get the balance right.
The Assumptive Close
The Assumptive Close is a closing technique used by sales people to act as though the prospect has already decided to go ahead with your solution or is ready to move to the next stage of the sales process. It is best applied when the prospect has clearly bought into your solution and declared their need for your solution.
Examples of an Assumptive Close:
“So when shall we deliver this solution to you by?”
“What will your competitors think when you implement the solution?
“I’ll send the contract out now for you to sign and get back to me today. Is that okay for you?”
This closing technique enables the mindset of the prospect to shift from their needs and desires to the benefits and advantages they will enjoy once they implement your solution. But be aware, this close should only be used once you’ve received a verbal agreement from your buyer and you’re just tying up loose ends.
Similarly to the Direct Close, you should be highly confident that you have satisfied the buyer’s needs and that they’re ready to move to the next stage of the sale before applying this type of closing technique. Misusing the Assumptive Close can give the buyer the impression that you’re overconfident and pushy.
The Rebound Close
The Rebound Close uses the opportunity of a buyer request (or even an objection) to force a commitment to get what you want and to move on to the next stage of the sale. It’s a reactive closing technique and is typically used by more experienced sales people, but it can be highly effective if you know what you’re doing and have researched the prospect well.
Example of a Rebound Close:
Buyer:“When can you get the engineers started on implementing the solution?”
Seller:“Well if you sign the contract this morning, I can schedule the engineers to start work tomorrow, in line with the project timescales…”
As shown in the above example, you can effectively react to a buyer request by hitting them with a compelling close to commitment so long as it is relevant to (and plays on) the buyer’s initial statement. This can be highly effective in accelerating the sales process.
The 7 Killer Closing Techniques are tried and tested methods of closing that will help you in any sales situation. When used correctly over a sustained period of time, their application in sales calls and meetings has been found to significantly increase sales for the organisations and people we work with.
But becoming an expert in closing is just one part of the sales process you’re going to have to master to make a real difference to your selling career. To get yourself in the best possible position to apply these techniques, you need to master the art of Selling from the Left®. Download our free Guide to Consultative Selling to get started.
Written by: Steve Eungblut, Managing Director of Sterling Chase
Date Posted: 13 October, 2011