Skip to main content

The 5 Steps of Consultative Selling

Alt text

richardsonsalestraining4 August 2017Blog

Share on LinkedInShare on TwitterShare on Facebook

It’s time to put the customer back into the conversation. The greatest resource a seller has in winning new business is an honest dialogue.

To ensure an honest and productive dialogue in all of your sales conversations follow these 5 steps for consultative selling in every buyer interaction.

1. Come Prepared

Sellers need to come prepared. Effective selling begins before the conversation starts. Seek out resources to learn more about the key drivers behind the customer’s business as well as the decision makers and their process. Interactions with the customer are valuable, so be sure to tackle the easy questions on your own before meeting the customer.

2. Foster Openness

Foster openness through dialogue that allows the buyer to feel less guarded about their insights on what they need in a solution. This exchange primes the seller to effectively position value later. All things being equal, the ability of a seller to tightly demonstrate relevance to a specific customer issue or opportunity (rather than simply an industry-wide one) will always be more compelling.

3. Check In

Successful sellers rely on periodic feedback from the customer. This “checking in” ensures that the customer is involved in the conversation. Feedback will reveal if the seller has offered any ideas that are incongruous to the customer’s perspective. Knowing these objections is critical before making recommendations that involve the product at hand.

4. Build Momentum

By creating a dialogue, asking questions, and eliciting feedback, sellers will be well prepared to ask for the sale. Often, several decision makers are involved. Therefore, sellers need to propose specific next steps to continue the momentum. It’s the seller’s job to help build consensus among stakeholders.

5. Establish Trust

Finally, sellers can continue to build their credibility by delivering on their commitments. When a buyer sees a seller’s actions as consistent with what they say, they establish Knowledge-based Trust. This is a critical outcome according to an independent study commissioned by SAP in which respondents revealed “trust” as the most important factor when purchasing products. Keep the customer engaged by making routine follow ups. These touch-points keep the customer locked into the various ways your solution connects to their problem.

Share on LinkedInShare on TwitterShare on Facebook
young sales professional sitting at her desk on the phone with a client using the consultative selling skills she learned in richardson's training program

Consultative Selling Training Programme Brochure

Learn about building the foundational selling skills needed to improve the performance of your entire team.

Download

Resources You Might Be Interested In

Article: How to Cut a Deal Loose: Walking Away from Low Quality Opportunities

Learn how to qualify out poor-quality opportunities and identify pursuits that are most worthy of a seller's time.

Article

Brief: Sales Tech Stack Chaos & How to Avoid It

Learn about Richardson's simple framework for building a tech stack that works for your sales organization.

Article

graphic with the name selling challenges research study

2024 Selling Challenges Research Study

After gathering information from over 1,000 sales professionals, sales leaders, and sales enablement professionals, Richardson presents these findings and the specific actions needed to overcome them.

Research

Solutions You Might Be Interested In