Negotiating as a Key Sales Skill
There are many business sales training programs that purport to teach sales negotiation skills. And many are worthwhile. They teach a sound sales negotiation methodology and provide thoughtful practice scenarios that build negotiation confidence and competence. But here are strategic sales negotiation tips that can help you close deals that work for you and your client.
3 Strategic Sales Negotiation Tips from the Pros
But we think the ability to negotiate effectively pretty much boils down to three key points. Incorporate these into your sales cycle as tips from the pros and you will have a powerful strategy on how to close business in a way that satisfies both sides.
- Don’t Jump the Gun
Timing is critical, especially when extra incentives to buy are involved. Have you ever felt prematurely pushed into a sale with promises of discounts or threats of dwindling inventory? These are favorite tactics of online retailers. But they don’t fit well in the world of more complex, solution selling.
Before you even think of offering incentives, you need to know that your prospect is fully qualified because they
– Want to buy from you
– Value your solution
– Are authorized to make the purchase
– Are ready to talk specific terms and next steps
Only then should you offer deal sweeteners. Otherwise, you could be perceived as interested more in what suits you than what suits them – the opposite of being client-centric.
- Know Your Prospect’s Business Needs
The term “win-win” is so often used that it has become a cliché. But it is an idea that still carries enormous weight and value. For a sales negotiation to be truly successful and long-lasting, both sides need to feel satisfied with the outcome.
With that in mind, a critical strategic sales negotiation tip is that you must thoroughly know what your client wants and needs from the deal – personally and professionally. What do they hope to gain and why does it matter? What will a positive outcome look like from their perspective?
- Understand Your Line in the Sand
What is actually in your power to offer in the negotiation? There are always non-negotiables. Be fully prepared with what you can trade on. What terms do you have control over – price, delivery schedules, guarantees, volume discounts?
Be clear prior to approaching the negotiating table exactly where you have authority.
The Bottom Line
Though many salespeople fear the negotiation stage of the sales cycle, if you are properly armed and prepared it can be a very satisfying experience. Sales negotiations do not need to be adversarial. In fact, they should be approached with the understanding that the goal is the same, only the details need to be ironed out.
To learn more strategic sales negotiation tips, download The 2 Most Common Sales Negotiation Tactics To Be Prepared For