Asking for Commitment in the Sales Process

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If you have successfully applied Customer-Focused Selling concepts, up to and including the negotiation of terms, getting a buyer’s commitment should come naturally. You have earned your customer’s trust, helped with recognition of needs, and proved that your solution is best.

As mentioned earlier, your goal is to open the relationship, not to close the sale.

In the Customer-Focused Selling process, I refer to the abilities needed to ask for the agreed-on order as “commitment skills,” not “closing skills.”

Closing skills attempt to get the buyers to commit.

Commitment skills are different because there is MUTUAL COMMITMENT at the point of sale: the customer commits to you, and you commit to the customer.

In the final two roles you play in the process–Teacher and Farmer–are focused on the commitments you make to the customer.

Here are a few non-manipulative ways to ask for commitment:

Ask, “What should be our next step?”

This question is most appropriate for a buyer who has a clear direction of how events should unfold, a lion personality type. This is a simple, honest question that asks your buyer to suggest a commitment to you.

Describe in detail what happens between now and installation, delivery, or commencement of service. If you have an implementation plan, now is the time to share it.

Then, simply ask, “Does that sound acceptable to you?”

Ask, “Would you like to give us a try?”

This commitment question is soft, yet direct, because it asks for a “Yes” or “No” answer.

By now you have come a long way with your prospect. The commitment techniques above are often successful. However, some buyers may still be reluctant. If this is the case, you must deal with the salesperson’s old nemesis–objections.

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Kevin Davis

Kevin F. Davis is the author of The Sales Manager’s Guide to Greatness”, which was named the 2018 Axiom Business Book Award Winner, Silver Medal. Kevin is also the author of Slow Down, Sell Faster!”.