Simple Sales Tracking Blog

Do You Always Uncover the Buyer’s Needs?

Following on from the last time when we looked at the introduction phase of the sales interview.

Today I would like to focus on uncovering the buyer’s needs through the use of structured questioning.

For many salespeople who deal mainly with enquires coming in this seems rather straight forward i.e. the buyer states the need, asks for the solution, then the price. The trap of course is we give them a price without further exploration of their needs and if we are not the cheapest then quite often we miss the sale.

The other scenario is we are referred to a prospect who already has a supplier of our product or service and may be happy with them. The traditional sales process would look something like the following –

1. Introductions/Pleasantries
2. Find Common Interests
     . Clients we work with
     . Agencies we have
     . Our experience with similar business
3. A few questions to uncover needs
4. Present Solution
5. Offer of Proposal
Look familiar?

Our goal is to uncover the buyers need – No need = no sale, or a gap in what they are currently getting.

It is important to remember you are wanting the buyer to do one of the hardest things any of us face- to make a “change” – this could be from their current supplier or their way of doing things.

To achieve this you need to meet a number of objectives –

1. Establish trust – If the prospect doesn’t trust you they will not reveal their true needs to you. No Trust = No Sale
2. Uncover the need you can provide a solution for – No Need = No Sale
3. Establish the true size of need. This establishes a return on investment in the buyers mind and creates urgency to act. No ROI = No Urgency = No Sale
4. Elicit an invitation from the prospect to present your solution.

This is best done through asking good prepared questions.

Your questions create not only the reasons to change but also the urgency for your solution.

In structuring your questions you need to understand the different levels of buyer needs – this we will look at in my next article.

Quote of the Week:

Every sale has five basic obstacles:
no need, no money, no hurry,
no desire, no trust

Zig Ziglar

Brett Burgess is a Sales Trainer and Programme Developer for Sales Impact Group Ltd

Filed under: Sales Techniques and Strategy, , , , ,


Simple Sales Tracking is web-based sales CRM software for the tracking, analysis and forecasting of individual and team sales pipeline and contacts.

Built with simplicity at its core, focus is kept on key sales tasks, while eliminating unnecessary ones, helping to ensure buy-in of the entire sales team.
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