Selling is tough in a down market, and the wrong approach could have serious consequences for your bottom line. Economic troubles can cause hardship for everyone, but salespeople are hit especially hard since they’re dealing with an environment that makes it much harder to convince people to buy.
While there’s no one-size-fits-all solution to the issue, there are a few things salespeople across a wide variety of industries can do to get more positive results. Take a look at some tips for how to sell in a down market so you can stay on top.
Prioritize Your Time
Your job is to close sales, and in a down market, this can take longer than normal. Even if you were able to enjoy some free time before, you’ll need to amp up your productivity in a down market.
In a sales position, it’s easy to find yourself allocating chunks of time to activities such as long lunches, administrative paperwork, or simply checking the latest news online. When you’re in sales, however, you should prioritize setting appointments with potential leads and already-secured accounts.
Commit to Prospecting
Prospecting is one of the most difficult aspects of selling, and it can sometimes be mentally and emotionally draining. While all that is normal, prospecting is something you’ll need to put more focus on in a down market, as the reward can be significant.
To keep up with your goals, you may want to make at least 20 prospecting calls each day. You might find it easiest and most helpful to get them all out of the way in the morning, but remember to stay flexible to accommodate your prospects’ schedules. What matters most is making the time to complete a certain amount every day and sticking to that goal.
Improve Your Customer Service
Down markets can create a lot of anxiety, and offering stellar customer service is an excellent way for a salesperson to alleviate some of their customers’ worries. Be sure to take time to meet with your existing accounts to help them with whatever they need. This can promote client loyalty and get you some extra referrals as well.
One of the most common topics of conversation between you and your customers during a down market is the tough economy, so getting referrals might actually be easier than you’d expect as long as you’re offering excellent customer service. Put simply, if you offer useful service during the down market that seriously alleviates some of the stress people are feeling, they’ll tell their friends. In fact, a reputation for good customer service can often be more of a motivation to buy than getting the lowest prices.
Set Positive Goals
One of the hardest obstacles to conquer during a down market is pessimism. The hardships can get to everyone, but that’s all the more reason why you need to maintain a positive attitude throughout it all. Your attitude will bleed through your sales tactics, and your customers will notice. Remember, closing a sale is far more dependent on the attitude of the seller than the attitude of the potential customer.
While it’s important to maintain positivity when interacting with people, you’ll also need to be optimistic with yourself when setting your own personal sales goals. Be confident in your abilities, and set realistic — yet optimistic — goals that reflect your shifting efforts in response to the tough economic conditions.
Prepare for Common Resistance
During a down market, various customers will often levy some of the same objections against your sales efforts. They may say that what you’re offering costs too much or that a competitor offers it cheaper. Potential customers may also say that they want to think about it more, a stalling tactic that’s often functionally the same as a refusal.
When facing these common objections to your sales pitches, you’ll need to have smooth and natural responses prepared to move past that resistance. Remember to always treat sales objections as requests for further information. For example, when someone says your goods or services are too expensive or are cheaper somewhere else, you may want to highlight the quality of your product or service, explain what makes it superior to the competition, and detail the committed customer service that comes with it. Overall, sharing the value of the product and how it solves a problem or improves quality of life for your prospect are the keys to overcoming objections.
Get Help From Experts
One of the best ways to sell in a down market is to call in help from the experts. That’s exactly what you’ll find with Sales Arbiter. Whether you’re a sales manager looking to train a team or you’re a salesperson yourself, our experts are happy to help you optimize your tactics and increase your revenue. Contact us today to learn more about what we can offer.