7 months ago
February 21, 2017

How to Improve Your Selling Skills

These methods for improving your sales skills and results can help.

Claire McConnachie

All sales people want to improve selling skills in order to improve selling results, even sales people who are consistently in the top tier. Indeed, the constant drive to do better is one of the not-so-hidden secrets of top performing sales people, who are never satisfied and are always striving to make more sales. These methods for improving your sales skills and results can help.

Improve Selling Skills By Asking for Insight

Self-reflection can help you improve selling skills on many levels, but these methods might not necessarily identify how others perceive your selling skills. Look at your selling skills through another person’s eyes to find out where you can work to make a real difference for yourself and for your career.

  • Ask your sales manager directly where he or she thinks you could work to make the most impact.
  • Ask your peers how they perceive your selling skills, and where they think you might be able to affect change.
  • Follow up with a lost sale to ask what you might have done differently to encourage a different outcome. This takes courage, but the results from knowing where things went astray can be tremendous.

Improve Selling Skills by Planning Your Sales Call

If your only objective on a sales call is to get a sale, you may want to improve selling skills by updating your approach to setting sales call objectives. Staying focused on the big picture is a great start, but in order to hone your sales outcomes there should be much more going on every time you reach for the phone. Make every sales call a success by setting multiple tier objectives for every call, such as:

  • Reaching the right decision maker for the opportunity at hand
  • Acquiring information that allows you to confirm that your targeting and qualifying of the prospect are accurate
  • Getting a commitment that leads to a sale, such as a follow up call or a presentation

Improve Selling Results By Getting Your Prospect Engaged

Your most highly qualified prospects are those who are not only equipped to buy, but engaged in the process. Working with a prospect who is not engaged means that you are working with a prospect on autopilot: Chances are good that he or she is not absorbing the information you are sharing, and has something other than you and your opportunity on his or her mind. The first and foremost way to make sure your prospect is engaged is by getting him or her to ask questions. If your prospect is not asking questions, encourage him or her to do so!

Improve Selling Results By Updating Your Pitch

There are virtues to a short and sweet sales pitch, but if your pitch is too fast you might be approaching a close before your prospect even understands where the conversation is headed. The sales pitch is one of the hardest areas to improve selling skills because it needs to be the right length, with the right message while remaining interesting and relevant. It may help you improve selling results if you keep every sales pitch centered on three to five key points. The benefits of staying focused on your key points are:

  • Your prospect will be more likely to understand and perhaps more critically, remember who you are and what you represent.
  • Your prospect will have a better idea of the ways in which you can help him or her and the organization he or she represents be more efficient and effective, generating interest from the beginning.
  • Your prospect will feel more comfortable responding positively if he or she has these understandings.

Finally, if you are committed to improve your selling skills and results, remember to never stop learning. The understanding of the sales process is constantly improving, and by improving with it you can ensure that your sales numbers are headed in the right direction.

Claire McConnachie

Claire is a Western University graduate with a background in recruiting, sales and customer service. As a Recruitment Consultant, her goals are to place the best people in the right roles resulting in satisfaction for both the candidate and client.