Six Mistakes Your Salespeople Are Making

By Robin Lines

Not Listening

Salespeople often want to push the ‘big ticket’ items. They will have a well-crafted pitch and all of the answers to the questions they think the client will ask. Problems arise when it’s the client who goes ‘off-script’ – an unforeseen objection, an unanticipated question, not needing what the salesperson is selling.

Your salespeople need to be able to connect with your clients on a personal level. They need to listen to what your client is telling them and only then direct them towards a solution. Sometimes it might not be the highest value sale they can make, but selling the right product or service reaps greater rewards in the long-term.

They Don’t Know What They’re Selling

Of course, to sell the right solution, a salesperson needs an in-depth knowledge of what they’re selling. They need to be able to make recommendations, pitch the benefits and answer questions. If your salespeople don’t know what they are selling, how can you expect them to inform the client?

Always remember, a customer primarily asks themselves ‘How will this benefit me?’. You need to ensure that your salespeople can answer that question before it has been asked.

They’re Not Asking the Right Questions

Great salespeople have a knack for finding a customer’s pain points and discovering their needs. After all, if you want to sell the right product you need to be able to work out what that product is. The more diverse your offer, the greater the challenge for a salesperson to narrow down the options.

Sometimes a customer may have already sold themselves on one product, but it is, in fact, another that would be more appropriate. Train your salespeople to ask your clients what challenges they want to overcome and dig deep into specifics to make sure you are selling the right product to the right client.

Your Salespeople Are Unlikeable

Sales is a people-oriented business. If your salespeople cannot connect with people, then you need to figure out why? It could be that they’re perceived as loud or abrasive by employing high-pressure sales tactics. Perhaps they come across as somebody who is only after the commission, or there is something else off about their presentation. Whatever it is, you need to address it quickly.

Remind your salespeople that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to sales. Each client is an individual and needs to be treated as such. Consequently, people skills are a vital part of sales.

Your Salespeople Are Not Prospecting

Prospecting is vital if you want to keep your business ticking over. Too many organisations allow their salespeople to sit around and wait for leads when business is slow. Instead, they should be training their salespeople to generate their own leads. Get them on the phones, firing off some emails or arranging meetings with clients.

Slow days are the perfect time to keep a relationship active, keep clients informed and even to follow-up recent sales to make sure the customer is happy. All of these activities can help keep your pipeline flowing.

You can read more on Prospecting here.

Your Salespeople Cannot Sell Themselves on Your Offer

A salesperson needs to be enthusiastic about what they’re selling. If they cannot sell themselves on a product, how can they expect to sell it to somebody else? At worst, an unenthusiastic salesperson comes across as demotivated, which may reflect on your business poorly.

You should encourage salespeople to research your offer, ask questions about your offer and engage in roleplays where they sit in the buyer’s chair and have the product sold to them. Help them to understand what problems this offer solves, and they should then be able to pitch it enthusiastically to clients.

Need Help Developing a Prospecting Strategy?

Robin Lines Associates offers fully bespoke and comprehensive sales training programmes for any size business. With other thirty years’ experience, we can help your people become consistent sales winners and game-changers for your company’s prospects.
Robin Lines

Robin Lines

Professional Services Consultant

I'm a highly experienced, versatile and dynamic training facilitator and business coach, dedicated to assisting leaders in helping their people achieve their potential and realise goals. I also deliver a range of Consultative Selling and Key Account Management programmes, equipping salespeople with the skills, tools and methodologies to help them win and outsell their competition.


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