Rejection is part of the territory for those who have a career in sales. However, that doesn’t mean that they can’t learn to anticipate common reasons that prospects say no and learn to work around them. While some customers will remain adamant they don’t want or can’t afford the product or service, many just need help in seeing that its benefits are much greater than any obstacle in its place. Below are some common rejection reasons as well as how a salesperson might be able to turn it around into a yes.
We Like It, But It Costs Too Much
People are accustomed to negotiating big-ticket items like cars and houses, so they often bring these same skills to the business world. After all, no one wants to pay more money than necessary. It’s important for salespeople to understand where the prospect is coming from but not to make the focus on money too soon. If this happens, it draws attention away from the value of the product or service. Instead of conceding price, he or she should focus on describing why the item in question is worth the asking price.
There’s No Room for This in Our Budget
This is an expansion on the above. The prospect might express interest in the product or service but no ability to buy it due to budget constraints. Sometimes this is a legitimate objection and other times people say it to end the conversation as quickly as possible because they’re busy or just not interested.
After acknowledging the objection, the salesperson should ask a question such as “What would be most important for your business if you didn’t have to consider your budget?” This helps to forge a common ground with the prospective customer and determine actual interest. The sales professional should attempt to discover a time that he or she can follow up when the cash flow situation might be better. Additionally, it’s important for salespeople to set their initial appointment with a key decision maker. That way, this person may be able to override budget issues if he or she can see the true value of the product or service.
We’re Already Receiving This Product or Service from Your Competitor
This objection isn’t as negative as it might at first seem. It tells the sales professional that the prospect recognized the need for the product or service or at least something closely related to it. This saves a lot of time in educating the prospective customer about the uses and benefits of what the salesperson came there to sell. It also doesn’t always mean a closed door. The prospect may not feel satisfied with the competition and has reached the point of considering change. To flush this out, the salesperson should consider asking the following questions:
· What made you choose this company in the first place?
· What do you think is working well right now?
· What isn’t working so well?
It’s good sportsmanship to acknowledge what the competition is doing well before focusing on any complaints the customer stated. This is the sales representative’s opportunity to describe how his or her company could offer better service. Directly comparing the product or service in question offered by the two companies can help overcome this objection as well.
We Don’t Really Understand the Benefits of This Product or Service
While this might sound like a sales objection, it’s really an opportunity for the salesperson to do a better job explaining the value of the product or service he or she is demonstrating. A good way to start is asking the customer to describe a business challenge or goal that is challenging to meet. What does the customer plan to do about this? He or she might start stammering and have no idea how to answer the question. This is a good time for the sales representative to tie the product or service to specific problems or goals the customer just mentioned.
Will This Really Give Us the Return on Investment You Claim?
No one wants to spend money thinking they will get nothing in return, especially businesses on a tight budget. The prospect is likely to pass if the sales professional can’t describe exactly what to expect in terms of return on investment (ROI). This objection might require a follow-up meeting to give the salesperson a chance to pull some hard numbers and case studies from other customers to prove ROI. Instead of accepting this objection as a firm rejection, the salesperson should do whatever is necessary to show value.
The above represent only a handful of possible rejections that sales professionals can expect when they meet with or call a potential customer. Over time, they will learn to recognize patterns and have an arsenal of tools to move past an initial rejection.