7 Objection Handling Techniques to Improve Sales Conversions
Here’s a sobering statistic from Hubspot for South African sales managers: 48% of salespeople are afraid to pick up the phone and make cold calls.
That’s nearly half of all salespeople going into their cold sales calls not with confidence but with fear.
We only need to look at the average strike rate of a cold caller to see that the odds are stacked against them from the start – before they even pick up the phone and start dialing.
And then there’s this statistic: 82% of buyers accept meetings with sellers who proactively reach out.
This paints a clear picture that those salespeople who are confident enough to dial those digits and try to make a sale from nothing actually have a great chance of booking a meeting with their prospect.
In part, sales confidence comes from knowing how to handle the most common objections customers give salespeople.
It’s about making the customer realise how much they stand to benefit, by setting their minds at ease using objection handling techniques.
So, what is objection handling and how can we improve our sales conversions by working to improve it?
What is objection handling?
Objection handling can be described as the process through which salespeople answer client questions and manage their concerns during a sale.
Selling Signals defines objection handling in more detail as, “…the way that a salesperson responds to, and overcomes, objections made by the prospect in order to move the sales process forward and ease their mind.”
So, if we go on the second definition, there are two parts to sales call objection handling.
Moving the sale forward. Easing concerns.
We can’t move the sale forward when there are concerns from the buyer, and we can’t ease their mind effectively if we don’t have the answers or know the objection handling techniques to do so.
Objection handling encompasses learning common sales objections, learning the communication skills you’ll need to handle them, and investing in tools like sales call management software to help you stay on top of your game as a salesperson.
Common sales objections from prospective clients
“I can get it cheaper somewhere else.”
There’s no denying the competitive nature of the global capitalist free market, where countless competitors in every industry jostle it out for limited market share.
When you hear this objection, revert back to your product or service’s unique selling proposition; the thing that makes yours different from the rest.
“I’d like to get it sometime in the future.”
A common objection during sales calls is the quasi-commitment from prospects to perhaps look at it again in a week, in a month, in a year.
This means the customer might be interested but has more important things to focus on right now. Try reminding them why this might be more important than a few of the things they’re prioritising instead.
“I don’t really understand what you’re offering.”
Sometimes our future customers object solely because they haven’t a cooking clue what you said or what you’re offering them.
This could be because you rushed your pitch, or because of your accent, or simply because of a terrible cellular signal.
Retry your pitch a bit slower if that’s the issue, and if connectivity is bad try and arrange a follow-up call instead.
Objection handling techniques to increase conversions
1. Shadow expert salespeople
Know a salesperson that just slays all day over the phone?
Shadow them next time they make a call where they’re expecting to close, and take note of their conversational techniques while they’re handling any prospect objections.
Handling objections is an art form, and some people just have a natural talent for persuasion.
Learning from them could help to diagnose your own shortcomings while giving you a real-life example of objection handling techniques in action.
2. Try some conversation coaching
Imagine having software that can analyse your sales calls, identify the factors that led to successful calls, and train you on how to improve your overall strike rate.
Logimeter’s Conversation Coach is exactly that, it analyses your sales calls and gives feedback to help you close more sales.
Let’s face it: there’s no way a sales manager can listen in on every one of your sales calls to give their critique. With Conversation Coach this becomes possible.
3. Track & review your sales calls
The best sportspeople and sports teams use recordings of themselves in action, but more often their competitors, to improve their performance.
Similarly, having the ability to track calls and replay them – where you hear exactly how each conversation went – helps you better identify which parts of your sales process need the most polishing.
Logimeter Call Tracker is a system that tracks and records calls while recycling missed calls and offering powerful real-time call analytics. Record, listen, improve, repeat.
4. Validate your prospect’s concerns
The above techniques are excellent prep work for sales calls where objection handling will likely be needed, but what about during the call?
Everyone knows you can’t win the game solely by strategising in the locker room.
During a sales call with a future client where they are keeping you on your toes, don’t forget to make it clear from the start that you understand where they’re coming from.
5. Share a story of a similar customer
Sharing social proof is another powerful way to handle objections during the sales process.
Here, you’re telling the story of how you were able to assist other customers who were facing the same concerns.
In a B2B setting, you could go as far as to bring up a client, in the same industry, who you assisted in a similar fashion previously.
6. Listen instead of just hearing
Too often salespeople hear what their prospective clients are saying during sales calls, but they’re not really listening.
This is the ‘listen to answer’ versus ‘listen to understand’ conundrum.
When you practice active listening, you’re focusing on what your call participant is saying and what it really means, instead of thinking about your rebuttal or next question while they’re talking.
7. Set a specific follow-up date & time
Still using a notebook to keep track of your sales calls?
It’s not as effective as call tracking software, especially when it comes to setting (and remembering to attend) follow-up sales meetings.
If you are unable to address all of your prospect’s concerns in one sales call, make sure you book a concrete follow-up appointment – online or on paper – by asking for a set day and time to call back.
Convert more sales calls without needing a notebook
Sales excellence and higher lead conversion rates are a reality when modernising your sales management systems.
You could write it all down in a notebook, or you could work smart and handle your sales management online.
Convert more calls into sales and reach your quotas like an absolute boss with Logimeter as the ace up your sleeve.
Book a demo with us today: https://www.logimeter.com/book-a-demo/
Logimeter case studies: https://www.logimeter.com/resources/case-studies/
Logimeter customer stories: https://www.logimeter.com/resources/customer-stories/