What is consultative selling?
Consultative selling is an approach which focuses on establishing trust and value with a prospect and exploring their needs before being offering a solution. The salesperson’s priority is to build a rapport first then provide the prospect with the right product.
To put this strategy into action you need to demonstrate key techniques. Here are 5 important techniques I think are highly valuable to a salesperson.
1 – Careful Questioning
To understand the customer’s needs the seller should begin with careful questioning. This will provide them with a detailed picture of what the customer wants. It is important to refrain from asking too many questions as the customer can feel like they are being interrogated. Instead, offer insights about your service and products along the way to build up credibility. This will naturally allow the customer to follow up with questions and stay engaged. Maintaining engagement is a vital skill needed when communicating over the phone.
2 – Build a Relationship
Earning a customer’s trust without a face-to-face interaction is difficult to achieve. One way sellers can overcome this is by developing a knowledge-based relationship through follow-ups. I recommend that after a phone call the seller should follow-up on at least one action which was mentioned. This will show the customer that the seller is reliable and will keep their word.
3 – Control the Conversation
The style of dialogue used by a seller is important to consultative selling. It is important that the customer understands the seller is something who has the ability to guide them through complex business challenges. I recommend being concise and making sure you give the customer a chance to speak
4 – Consider All Feedback
All feedback is beneficial to a seller, regardless if it is positive or negative. When a customer explains their experience with a service or product, they are clarifying their needs and telling a seller what they want moving forward. Therefore, it is important to consider all feedback and make suitable changes based on such information. By asking for their opinion, the seller can demonstrate their commitment to the customer.
5 – Research Customer Needs
It is likely that a conversation on the phone is shorter than one in person, so the seller needs to research the business and industry in advance to utilise their time on the phone. This will equip them with a basic level of knowledge and allow them to begin questioning the customer.