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15+ Sales Closing Techniques Every Salesperson Should Use

Sales Closing Techniques

“You catch more flies with honey than vinegar.” 

When it comes to closing a sale, your approach matters. Instead of being sour or pushy, try using a little honey – by which I mean, focus on building a connection with your prospects and showing them how your offering can make their lives easier. 

Let me walk you through 15+ sales closing techniques that’ll help you catch more flies (and close more deals) with your honey-sweet approach.

Key Takeaways

  • When a salesman believes a prospect is prepared to make a purchase, they will apply a sales closing method. This follows the development of confidence, the presentation of the solution, and the resolution of any issues.

  • To successfully close sales, understand the psychology behind closing, use appropriate techniques based on the situation and prospect’s responses, handle objections effectively, measure performance, and continuously improve skills.

  • The article covers 15 top sales closing techniques, including the assumptive close, urgency close, summary close, question close, trial close, soft close, hard close, referral close, testimonial close, objection handling close, collaborative close, value-based close, emotional close, combination close and the puppy dog close.

What is Sales Closing?

The last phase of the sales process is called “sales closing,” during which the salesman convinces the customer to approve the purchase of the product or service being sold.

It involves addressing any remaining objections, strengthening the value statement, and guiding the prospect toward a positive buying decision.

Effective sales closing requires a combination of active listening, problem-solving, and persuasion skills. When you’re trying to seal the deal with a potential customer, it’s not about tricking them or pushing them into something they don’t want. 

The key is getting to know what they really need and showing how what you’re offering can solve their problem or make their life easier.

The Principles of Sales Closing

Understanding the psychology behind sales closing can help you better connect with your prospects and increase your chances of success.

The table below outlines key psychological principles that influence decision-making in sales and how salespeople can utilize these principles to effectively close deals. 

Psychological PrinciplesExplanationHow to Leverage
ScarcityLimited opportunities drive action.Create time-sensitive or limited offers.
Social ProofPeople follow others’ positive experiences.Share testimonials and success stories.
ReciprocityPeople return favors or goodwill gestures.Provide value, insights, or small gifts.
AuthorityPeople trust perceived experts.Demonstrate expertise and credentials.
ConsistencyPeople maintain consistent beliefs/behaviors.Get prospects to make small aligned commitments.
LikingPeople say yes to those they like.Build rapport and show genuine interest.
Fear of Missing Out (FOMO)People avoid missing valuable experiences.Emphasize exclusivity and potential regret.
AnchoringFirst information heavily influences people.Set a high anchor price or value early on.

Top 15 Sales Closing Techniques

1. The Assumptive Close 

The assumptive close is a technique where the salesperson assumes the prospect is ready to make a purchase and proceeds as if the sale has already been made.

  • Act as if the sale is a previous conclusion
  • Use language that implies the prospect has already made a decision
  • Be confident and assertive in your approach
  • Avoid asking if the prospect wants to buy; instead, ask about delivery or quantity

    Example:
“When would you like to schedule the installation of your new software?”

2. The Urgency Close 

The urgency close creates a sense of scarcity or limited availability to encourage the prospect to make a quick decision.

  • Highlight limited-time offers, deadlines, or low inventory situations
  • Tap into the fear of missing out (FOMO)
  • Create a sense of urgency without being too aggressive
  • Use time-sensitive language to motivate the prospect 


Example:

“If you sign up today, you’ll receive a 20% discount, but this offer expires at midnight.”

3. The Summary Close 

The summary close involves recapping the key benefits and features of the product or service to strengthen the value proposition.

  • Highlight the main points discussed during the sales conversation
  • Address any objections or concerns the prospect may have
  • Emphasize how the product or service solves the prospect’s problems
  • Ask for the sale after summarizing the benefits

    Example:
“To sum it up, our solution will increase your productivity by 30%, save you $10,000 annually, and come with a 24/7 support team. Shall we move forward with the paperwork?”

4. The Question Close 

The question close involves asking a series of questions that guide the prospect towards a positive buying decision.

  • Ask questions that lead the prospect to the desired conclusion
  • Get the prospect to say “yes” to smaller commitments
  • Build momentum by asking increasingly important questions
  • Use the prospect’s answers to tailor your closing approach 


Example: 

“If we could reduce your processing time by half, would that be valuable to your business?”

5. The Trial Close 

The trial close is a low-risk way to measure the prospect’s interest and identify any remaining objections.

  • Ask open-ended questions to assess the prospect’s readiness to buy
  • Uncover any remaining concerns or doubts
  • Use the prospect’s feedback to adjust your approach
  • Prepare to address objections or provide additional information

    Example: 
“Based on our discussion, how do you feel about our proposed solution?”

5. The Soft Close 

The soft close is a subtle approach that involves asking for a small commitment rather than a full sale.

  • Ask the prospect to take a small step forward in the sales process
  • Build trust and reduce the perceived risk for the prospect
  • Increase the likelihood of a future sale by securing a minor commitment
  • Provide value to the prospect through a small commitment

    Example:
“Would you be interested in signing up for a free 30-day trial of our service?”

7. The Hard Close

 The hard close is a positive approach that involves directly asking for the sale.

  • Use this technique when you are confident the prospect is ready to buy
  • Ensure that all objections have been addressed
  • Be clear and direct in your request for the sale
  • Prepare to handle any final objections or hesitations 

Example:

“Based on your needs and our solution’s capabilities, I believe this is the right choice for your business. Are you ready to proceed with the purchase?”

8. The Referral Close 

The referral close involves asking the prospect for referrals or introductions to other potential customers.

  • Use this technique when the prospect decides not to buy
  • Capitalize on the prospect’s network to generate new leads
  • Demonstrate confidence in your product or service
  • Build trust with the prospect by showing you value their connections

    Example:
“I understand if now isn’t the right time for you to make a purchase. However, if you know anyone else who might benefit from our solution, I would greatly appreciate an introduction.”

9. The Testimonial Close 

The testimonial close involves sharing success stories or testimonials from satisfied customers to build credibility and trust.

  • Use testimonials that are relevant to the prospect’s industry or pain points
  • Highlight the positive experiences and results achieved by other customers
  • Address doubts or concerns the prospect may have
  • Reinforce the value proposition through real-world examples

    Example: 
“One of our clients in your industry, ACME Corporation, saw a 25% increase in sales within the first quarter of using our software. Here’s what their CEO had to say about our partnership…”

10. The Objection Handling Close 

    The objection handling close involves addressing and overcoming the prospect’s objections or concerns.

    • Actively listen to the prospect’s concerns
    • Acknowledge their objections and show empathy
    • Provide solutions or reassurance to address each objection
    • Demonstrate your expertise and commitment to the prospect’s success

      Example:
    “I hear your concern about the implementation process. Our dedicated onboarding team will work closely with your staff to ensure a smooth transition and minimize any disruptions to your business.”

    11. The Collaborative Close

      The collaborative close involves working with the prospect to find a mutually beneficial solution.

      • Position yourself as a partner rather than just a salesperson
      • Involve other team members or decision-makers when necessary
      • Work together to customize the solution to the prospect’s needs
      • Build trust and strengthen the relationship through collaboration

        Example:
      “Let’s work together to find the best package that meets your specific requirements. I’ll involve our product specialist to ensure we can tailor the solution to your unique business needs.”

      12. The Value-Based Close 

        The value-based close focuses on the long-term benefits and ROI of the product or service.

        • Emphasize the value the solution provides beyond just features or price
        • Highlight the potential for cost savings, increased efficiency, or revenue growth
        • Demonstrate how the solution aligns with the prospect’s business goals
        • Use data or case studies to support your value proposition

          Example:
        “By implementing our solution, you can expect to save $50,000 in annual operating costs while increasing your production capacity by 20%. The long-term ROI is substantial when you consider these factors.”

        13. The Emotional Close 

          The emotional close taps into the prospect’s emotions and desires to create a strong connection.

          • Paint a picture of how the product or service will improve the prospect’s life or business
          • Use vivid language and storytelling to evoke emotions
          • Focus on the benefits that matter most to the prospect
          • Create a sense of excitement or anticipation about the future

            Example:
          “Imagine having an extra hour each day to spend with your family, pursue your hobbies, or focus on growing your business. That’s the kind of freedom and peace of mind our service provides.”

          14. The Combination Close 

            The combination close involves using multiple closing techniques together to adapt to the prospect’s responses.

            • Start with a trial close to gauge interest
            • Move into an assumptive or soft close to secure a small commitment
            • Use a summary or value-based close to reinforce the benefits
            • Be prepared to handle objections or switch techniques based on the prospect’s reactions

              Example:
            “Based on our discussion, it seems like our solution is a great fit for your needs. I’d recommend starting with a 3-month pilot to ensure you’re seeing the full value. We can then discuss expanding to a full-scale implementation. How does that sound?”

            15. The Puppy Dog Close 

              The puppy dog close involves offering the prospect a free trial or sample of your product or service, with the belief that they will grow attached to it and want to keep it.

              • Provide a low-risk way for the prospect to experience your offering
              • Allow the prospect to see the value firsthand
              • Create a sense of ownership or attachment to the product or service
              • Follow up to convert the trial into a full sale

                Example: 
              “Why don’t you take our software for a test drive for the next 14 days? You’ll have full access to all the features, and I’ll check in with you to see how it’s going and answer any questions you may have.”

              16. The Artisan Close 

                The artisan close highlights the unique craftsmanship, quality, or specialization of your product or service.

                • Emphasize the skill, expertise, or care that goes into your offering
                • Differentiate your product or service from competitors
                • Appeal to prospects who value artisanship or attention to detail
                • Justify a higher price point or premium positioning

                  Example:
                “Each piece of our handcrafted furniture is made by skilled artisans using traditional techniques passed down through generations. The result is a one-of-a-kind, heirloom-quality piece that will last a lifetime.”


                17. The Visualization Close 

                The visualization close involves guiding the prospect to imagine themselves using and benefiting from your product or service.

                • Use vivid, sensory language to help the prospect envision the experience
                • Focus on the emotional and practical benefits they will enjoy
                • Ask questions that encourage the prospect to picture themselves using your offering
                • Create a sense of ownership or investment in the product or service

                  Example:
                “Close your eyes and picture yourself walking into your newly renovated kitchen. The sunlight gleams off the polished quartz countertops, and the sleek, modern appliances are perfect for entertaining. How does it feel to have your dream kitchen finally become a reality?”

                18. The Empathy Close 

                  The empathy close involves demonstrating a deep understanding and concern for the prospect’s challenges, needs, or desires.

                  • Show genuine interest in the prospect’s situation
                  • Listen actively and ask questions to uncover their true needs
                  • Acknowledge their concerns and show empathy for their struggles
                  • Position your product or service as a solution that addresses their specific issues

                    Example:
                  “I completely understand the frustration of constantly juggling multiple projects and deadlines. Our project management software is designed to streamline your workflow, eliminate unnecessary meetings, and help you stay on top of your team’s progress. Let me show you how it can make your life easier.”

                  Sales Closing Techniques: A Comparative Analysis

                  While all the techniques mentioned above can be effective in closing sales, they differ in their assertiveness, complexity, and emotional appeal. Understanding these differences is crucial for businesses looking to optimize their sales strategies and drive better results. 

                  By selecting the right approach for each situation, companies can enhance their closing rates, boost revenue, and foster stronger customer relationships. This comparative analysis provides valuable insights to help businesses choose the most effective sales closing techniques for their unique needs and goals.

                  Close TypeAssertivenessComplexityEmotional AppealBest for
                  Assumptive CloseHighLowLowConfident buyers
                  Urgency CloseHighLowHighTime-sensitive offers
                  Summary CloseMediumMediumMediumComplex sales
                  Question CloseMediumMediumLowBuilding momentum
                  Trial CloseLowLowLowGauging interest
                  Soft CloseLowLowMediumBuilding trust
                  Hard CloseHighLowLowReady buyers
                  Take Away CloseHighMediumHighCreating urgency
                  Referral CloseLowMediumMediumExpanding reach
                  Testimonial CloseMediumMediumHighBuilding credibility
                  Objection Handling CloseMediumHighLowOvercoming concerns
                  Collaborative CloseMediumHighMediumComplex sales
                  Value-Based CloseMediumHighMediumDemonstrating ROI
                  Emotional CloseMediumMediumHighLifestyle products
                  Combination CloseHighHighHighAdapting to prospects
                  Puppy Dog CloseLowLowHighOffering free trials
                  Artisan CloseMediumMediumMediumHighlighting craftsmanship
                  Visualization CloseMediumMediumHighHelping prospects envision benefits
                  Empathy CloseMediumHighHighDemonstrating understanding

                  Common Challenges in Closing Sales

                  Closing sales is important for business success, but it’s not always easy. Sales reps often face objections from potential customers, such as:

                  • Price: Prospects think it’s too expensive
                  • Timing: Prospects aren’t ready to buy now
                  • Lack of Need: Prospects don’t see why they need it
                  • Comparison Shopping: Prospects want to look at other options

                  To handle these challenges, sales reps need to listen to the prospect’s concerns, show they understand, and explain how the product or service solves their problems or meets their needs. 

                  By being ready for common objections and questions, sales teams can give good answers that show the value of what they’re selling. This helps them close more sales.

                  How to Measure and Improve Sales Performance

                  To continually improve your sales closing performance, it’s important to track and measure your results. Some key metrics to monitor include:

                  MetricDescription
                  Closing Rate% of prospects who make a purchase
                  Average Sale ValueAverage $ amount of each sale
                  Sales Cycle LengthAverage time from initial contact to purchase
                  Objection Handling Success Rate% of objections successfully overcome

                  By regularly reviewing these metrics and identifying areas for improvement, you can refine your best sales closing techniques, and optimize your overall sales process.

                  Tips for Improving Sales Closings

                  Elevate your sales closing performance by implementing these proven strategies. Consistently measure your results and refine your approach to achieve greater success.

                  Record and Analyze Calls

                  Listen back to recorded sales calls to identify strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities in your closing approach. Notice what worked well and what fell flat.

                  Get Feedback

                  Ask colleagues, managers, or even friends/family to audit your pitches and closing techniques. An outside perspective is invaluable.

                  Study Top Performers

                  Observe and learn from your organization’s top-closing sales reps. What language do they use? How do they handle objections?

                  Practice Through Role-Playing

                  Role-play different scenarios and practice deploying each closing technique. The more comfortable and natural you are, the better.

                  Learn From Lost Deals

                  Analyze why certain deals slipped away. Was it an ineffective closing technique or could you have better qualified the prospect?

                  Research

                  Read books, take courses, and attend workshops/seminars to continuously hone and expand your closing skills.

                  Test New Approaches

                  Experiment with new techniques or terming on a subset of prospects to gauge their effectiveness before wider implementation.

                  Develop A Personal Style

                  While modeling, adapt techniques to create a closing approach that aligns with your personality and strengths.

                  The best closers are always learning, iterating, and evolving their skills. By measuring performance and implementing these tips, you can continue improving your ability to successfully close more sales.

                  Frequently Asked Questions

                  How do I know when a prospect is ready to close?

                  Look for buying signals such as asking about pricing, inquiring about the next steps, or expressing a sense of urgency. When you notice these signs, it’s a good indication that the prospect is ready to move forward.

                  What if a prospect says they need to think about it? 

                  Acknowledge their need for consideration, but try to set a specific follow-up timeline. Ask if there’s any additional information you can provide to help them make a decision, and stay in touch to maintain the relationship.

                  How do I handle a prospect who goes silent after the initial contact? 

                  Don’t assume the silence means they’re not interested. Follow up with a gentle reminder, providing additional value or resources. If you still don’t receive a response, consider moving them to a nurture campaign and focusing on other prospects.

                  What if a prospect is only focused on price? 

                  Try to shift the conversation to the value and benefits of your product or service. Highlight the potential ROI, cost savings, or competitive advantages. If price remains a sticking point, consider offering a discount or flexible payment options.

                  How often should I follow up with a prospect after the initial contact? 

                  The frequency of follow-ups depends on your industry and sales cycle. As a general rule, aim to follow up within 24-48 hours of the initial contact, then adjust your cadence based on the prospect’s responsiveness and engagement level.

                  Seal The Deal With These Techniques

                  Closing a sale is not about manipulation or pressure tactics; it’s about understanding, empathy, and genuine problem-solving. 

                  By approaching each prospect with a sincere desire to help, actively listening to their concerns, and tailoring your solutions to their specific needs, you’ll build the trust and credibility necessary to close deals with confidence. 

                  Use these proven closing techniques, but always remember that your ultimate goal is to create value, foster long-term relationships, and make a positive impact on your customers’ lives. 

                  References

                  5 Different Types of Sales Closing, Medium

                  12 Best Sales Closing Techniques For Sales Reps, enthu.ai

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