The Best-Kept Secrets to Dealing with Sales Objections
When it comes to dealing with objections, most shop owners shut down as soon as the customer says, "It's too much money" or "I'd like to think it over." There are a number of reasons why, but the single most common reason is that shop owners don't know how to handle the objections.
By Bob Cooper
Here are what I’ve discovered to be the best-kept secrets when it comes to dealing with sales objections.
1. Accept the fact that
the single greatest cause of
sales objections is a poor sales presentation. If you don’t follow the
eight steps of the sales cycle (1. Build rapport; 2. Fact-find; 3.
Identify the need; 4. Identify the solutions; 5. Build interest and
value; 6. Ask for the sale; 7. Close the sale; 8. Resell the service),
if you rush through your presentation, or if you don’t believe in the
service you’re recommending, then sales objections are bound to occur.
So, the first place to start in handling objections is in mastering
your presentation. In all cases, make sure that you build rapport with
the customer, offer options whenever possible, build interest and
value in the benefits of your service rather than the parts and labor,
and give the prices last.
2. When you hear an objection,
it’s a cardinal rule
that you need to listen, learn and be thankful. When a customer gives
you any kind of sales objection, they’re telling you that they’re
interested, but there is something that is standing in the way of them
authorizing the service. As sales professionals, we need to be thankful
that they are expressing their concern rather than just leaving. First
and foremost, when a customer voices a concern, you should never
interrupt them. The more they talk, the more comfortable they will feel
with you, and the more you will learn about the questions and concerns
they have. You should also make a point to never disagree, because all
that will do is alienate the customer by proving them wrong. You may
win the battle of words, but you’ll lose the sale. Instead, you should
say something like, “Well Mr. Jones, based on what you’ve just told me,
I can see why you would feel that way. Let me tell you what we’ve
3. Follow the Elite-recommended
five-step procedure for dealing with sales objections:
1. Hear the customer out.
2. Feed the objection back to the customer to assure you understand
them: “So what you’re telling me Mr. Jones is that you feel you can get
the same job done for less somewhere else, am I correct?”
3. Respond to the objection. This is where you answer their questions and resolve their concerns.
4. Confirm your response: “So does this all make sense now, Mr. Jones?”
As soon as they agree, you should ask for the sale again.
5. Change the subject: “Now will you need a ride back to your office?”
4. Know when to quit.
One of the most common questions
we get at our Masters Course for service advisors is, “When do you quit
when a customer continues to show interest?” My philosophy is pretty
simple. If I sense that the customer is becoming frustrated in the
least bit, I quit. If I sense that I’m becoming frustrated in the least
bit, I quit, because I’d never want that frustration to show through to
the customer. And, lastly, when I feel the customer fully understands
everything that has been recommended, and why, when I have answered all
of their concerns in a professional way, and they have still decided to
pass on my recommendations, I quit.
5. Record yourself.
One of the best tools you can use
as a service advisor is a digital voice recorder, and one of the best
habits that you can develop is recording your presentations and then
reviewing them as soon as possible. When reviewing your voice
recordings, pay close attention to your tonality, your listening
skills, the delivery of your presentation and whether or not you
followed the sales cycle. Just assure that you abide by any local,
state and federal laws regarding the recording of others, regardless of
whether the customer is at the counter or on the phone.
6. Lastly, bear in mind that service advisors
sales people, not clerks. It is the job of an advisor to help customers
make difficult decisions that are in their best interest. If you never
put money ahead of people, if you sell from your heart rather than
based on the dollars and if you follow these recommendations, then a
number of things will occur. Beyond just becoming a better service
advisor, you’ll be able to easily handle those sales objections, and,
most importantly, you will be helping a lot of people at the same
For the last 20 years, Bob Cooper has been the president of Elite Worldwide, Inc. (www.EliteWorldwideStore.com),
offering shop owners sales, marketing and employee management audio
training courses available for instant download. The company also
offers coaching and service advisor training services. You can contact
Bob at email@example.com, or by calling 800-204-3548.