The year is rapidly coming to a close, and as it does, many people are rushing around to do things that they want or need to accomplish before 2020 arrives.
Unfortunately, that sense of urgency may not apply to your potential new clients. Perhaps you’re in the situation of communicating with someone for at least a week, but they’re still not convinced to buy a product.
Here are five strategies that could fix that common but frustrating problem:
1. Focus on how now is an ideal time to buy something that sparks a change
People often think a new year gives them a perfect opportunity to enact positive changes in their life. That’s why you should try to tie your product to something that facilitates improvement. This option works particularly well for B2C sales since emotions so often drive their purchasing decisions.
For example, maybe you sell a meal delivery service, and a person can get the best deal on a plan if they sign up for a year at a time. Try emphasizing how your company could help a hesitant customer finally make good on their promise to stop eating so many fast-food meals from a drive-through, for example.
You could also mention that beginning something like that at the start of a year makes it especially easy to keep track of things like the overall money spent or saved, or how many times they make meals to eat at home versus dining out. Then, they can look back over time and see the evidence of their beneficial change.
2. Prove your credibility
B2C and B2B clients view a company’s credibility differently. For example, if a B2C company has a compelling social media campaign and receives rave reviews from a potential buyer’s friends, those two things could cause a purchase to happen by cultivating credibility.
However, when you’re trying to close a B2B sale, customers more often want evidence of how you’ve helped similar customers. That might mean showing them case studies or testimonials. The more you can do to prove credibility, the easier it should be to ultimately convince people they’re making the right decision by choosing to do business with you.
3. Gauge the genuine interest level
When a prospective customer tells you, “I need to think about it,” that response can seem discouraging. However, it merely means you need to be friendly and accommodating, plus find out when you can schedule a follow-up. Hearing that reply from a person should also encourage you to ask some questions that clarify whether the person is truly still interested in what you offer or intent on backing out.
For example, say something like, “Just so we’re on the same page, can you confirm whether you’re still interested?” Alternatively, find out if the person intends to buy before the year is out by asking a question such as “Is this purchasing decision a priority for you by the end of the year?”
By finding these things out, you can spend more time interacting with the people who are most eager to buy — even when some of them say they need to think about it some more.
4. Bring up time-sensitive offers and the need to capitalize on them
People are often more willing to buy if there are specifications they must meet to save money. In one instance, Harvard Business School researchers found that customers spent 9.4 percent more when an eCommerce store had a minimum threshold for free shipping. You can take inspiration from that finding and use the knowledge — with a slight tweak — to help close sales.
Instead of requiring people to spend minimum amounts to receive free shipping, draw potential customers’ attention to any offers you have that expire as 2019 comes to a close. For example, maybe people can save 25 percent off the price of an enterprise-level password manager if they purchase by December 31. Or, perhaps customers can get something extra by showing their commitment and signing up for your service by the end of the year.
Reminding people of how they’ll miss out by delaying their decision-making could spur them into action. If you opt to give a freebie to individuals who become new customers by the end of the year, it could also be helpful to tell them about the value of the complimentary offer, provided it’s sufficiently impressive.
5. Understand your role as a problem-solver
It’s natural for you to ask questions about what a potential customer wants. And, hopefully, you’ve been doing that throughout the communications with them. It’s equally essential to be an outstanding listener, however. Your leads will probably be straightforward regarding some of the problems they want to solve. By also tuning in to what they tell you, you’ll likely uncover some that aren’t as obvious.
You can frequently present yourself as a problem-solver by focusing on your ability to offer consistently outstanding service. If you can’t beat competitors on price, that may not matter. Research carried out in 2017 by Podium showed that 63 percent of customers would pay up to 15 percent more for the same product or service if they had the assurance of a good experience.
Potential customers get fed up if it sounds like you’re offering irrelevant solutions. That’s why it’s crucial to listen to what they say, then angle your pitches towards the precise things they mentioned as struggles or goals.
Power through the final push
People can express hesitation at any time of the year. However, it can be exceptionally disappointing to experience at the end of a year — mainly if you’re trying to meet a year-end sales goal or wrap up any loose ends with leads before 2020 kicks off.
The five suggestions here can help you break through barriers and stay on track to have a strong finish to the year.