Too Many Options? Narrow It Down to Get the Sale Now

If you sell a product or service with many add-on’s and options or choices, then it’s easy for your prospect to get overwhelmed and want to “think about it.” Many sales reps actually make it for harder for buyers to decide because they keep pitching (instead of closing) and so complicate the sale even further.

If you find that you’ve “talked past the close” as I like to say, then it might be time to un-complicate the sale and make it easy for your prospect or customer to buy something now, rather than putting the decision off.

Here are some ways you can do that. As usual, take some time to customize these to fit your product or service:

Option 1:

“Now _________ I may have made this harder on you than I should have. Let’s look at the basic package again, the (restate the easiest offer), and let me ask you: will this do most of the things you’re looking at this to do for you?”

Option 2:

“It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the choices and combinations, so let me make this easy for you: most people in your position go for our X package because they find it does everything they need it to do. And, of course, you can always upgrade later should you have the need.

So let’s do this….”

Option 3:

“I’m getting the feeling we’ve gone over too many options, and it would probably be easier for you if we just took half of these away. Which features don’t you feel you need?”

Option 4:

“I know it’s easy to go back and forth on some of these combinations, so let me ask you: is this a toss-up decision, or are you leaning towards one more than the other – and if so, which one is it?”

Option 5:

“__________, let’s step back here for a moment. You don’t have to get the package that has all the bells and whistles – unless you really want to, of course…. – so tell me, which one of these are you leaning towards?”

Option 6:

“You know, going through all the possible options and combinations could take you hours and hours. You don’t have to do that now. Instead, let’s break this down to your absolute essentials: which features can’t you live without?”

Options 7:

“If you had to pick one package/combination over another, which would it be?”

Option 8:

“With all of these options you’re going to get our (warranty, performance, delivery, etc.), so any package you pick is going to be fine for you. Tell me, what are you leaning towards right now?”

Option 9:

“__________, let’s make this simple and get you started with the basic package for now. That way you can see how this works for you, we can get into a relationship, and later, down the road, if you want to expand your coverage, you can. At least in the meantime you’re not missing out on these results….”

Option 10:

“Let do this: let’s take the premium package so you won’t have to worry later that you’re missing out on something you wish you had gotten in the beginning. With this package, you’ll get everything you need….”

Having these closes handy when you feel your prospect slipping away or having a hard time making a decision could very well save the sale for you.

“I Want to Think About It” – Ten New Ways to Handle it!

I know, we’ve already been through this objection, but sales reps always want more input on it so here it is:

The bottom line is that when someone says they want to think about it, it means they aren’t sold yet. And it could very easily mean that they aren’t sold on your solution, and they never will be because they have something else in mind.

Your job is to either get to that hidden objection and learn what you need to do to overcome it, or get your prospect to reveal why they aren’t going to go with your product or service.

And that’s why you must get your prospect talking. Now here is why this is so hard for sales people: They don’t want to ask because they don’t want to know! Most sales reps would just prefer to let the prospect “think about it” hoping they will somehow convince themselves and buy at some time in the future.

How often does that happen?

What usually happens is that the prospect then disappears at this point, never to be heard from again. And that’s why sales reps dread this objection.

But top producers know that getting their prospect talking at this point is crucial to find out one of two things (and both of these things is a successful outcome):

1) What the hidden objection really is, and so find a way of dealing and overcoming it, or:
2) What the reason is they aren’t going to move on it, and so be able to hang this up as a learning experience and use the lessons to qualify the next lead better.

Let me repeat – BOTH of these outcomes should be considered a success. The first because you’ll learn what you need to do to get a deal, and the second because you won’t start chasing an unqualified lead that will never buy, and you’ll learn how to not create another one in the future.

So the following ten rebuttals to “I want to think about it” are designed to get your prospect talking – and then you’ll be able to decide which category they go into…

[Note: I would be remiss if I didn’t emphasize again that you should have avoided this objection from coming up in the first place by asking this type of qualifying question during your initial call: “And if you like what we have to offer, what would be your timeframe for getting started?”]

Objection: “I want to think it over”

Option 1:

“I understand. Just out of curiosity:

• “Do you understand how the (explain the benefits of savings or making money here) work right?”
• “And do you understand what we mean when we say, (stress any warranties guarantees or customer service options) here, don’t you?”
• “Then while we’re on the phone together, what other questions do you have?”

[If None]

“Then just to clarify my thinking, what part of this do you need to think over?

Option 2:

“Are you going to be thinking over the (name two or three benefits) we spoke about today or about whether or not this solution is the right fit for you?”

Option 3:

“I know I’ve given you a lot to think about today, do you mind me asking what part of this you’d like to think over?”

Option 4:

“I understand, and I’m sure you’ve got other options to consider…do you mind if I ask how we’re stacking up to what you’re also looking at?”

Option 5:

“__________, it sounds like you’re probably considering other options as well – do you mind if I ask who else you’re looking into?”


“And how do we stack up compared to them?”

Option 6:

“__________, besides yourself, who else would be weighing in on this?”

Option 7:

“I totally understand, many people I speak with want to consider all their options before making a decision. Tell me, who else is in the running for this?”

Option 8:

“That’s no problem. Level with me, if you would, what would be holding you back from saying yes right now?”


“And is this even a realistic option for you?”

Option 9:

“And as you think about it right now, what would be the major reason for not moving forward with it?”

Option 10:

“I understand – not everyone I speak with is ready to move forward with it right away. Quick question:

“What would you need to see here for you to say yes to this?”

As you can see, all of these responses are geared to get your prospect to reveal what it’s going to take for you to get the sale – and some are also geared to get your prospect to reveal why they will never be a deal.

Again, either way you win.

How to Use Tie Downs to Build Momentum

I don’t know why tie downs aren’t used more by sales reps selling over the phone. They serve several crucial functions, including:

Getting confirmation that the point you just made was understood and accepted by your prospect. This is especially important when selling over the phone as you don’t have the physical clues that tell you how it’s going.

Using tie downs is also instrumental in building that all important yes momentum. If the prospect keeps agreeing with you, then you can feel confident at the end in asking for the sale.

Tie downs also give your prospect a chance to engage with you – when you use one, you actually have to wait for them to respond.

Using tie downs also gives you control over the flow of the call. Remember, whoever asks a question is in control.

There are many other value reasons for using tie downs, but let’s look at some of the most effective, and go over in what situations they work best:

#1: Whenever your prospect asks you a buying question (and any question a prospect asks you is a buying question), after you answer it you must use a tie-down. Examples:

If a prospect asks you how much something is, after you give them the price, you can use any of these tie downs:

“How does that price sound?”


“Is that what you were looking to spend today?”


“How does that compare with what you are paying now?”


“Is that within your budget?”


“That’s a great value today, and I’d take as many as I could at that price – how many should I ship you today?” (O.K., that’s a close, but I couldn’t help myself! Do you see how tie-downs can lead to a close :–)

If a prospect asks a question about a feature or a benefit, use any of the following:

“Do you see how that works?”


“Does that make sense?”

OR, better:

“How would you use that?”


“Do you understand how that works?”


“I think that’s a great benefit – how about you?”

If a prospect makes a statement that seems negative, use:

“How did you come to that?”


“Compared to what?”


“What do you mean exactly?”


“How does your current vendor handle that?”

#2 Use tie downs throughout your presentation. Most sales reps power through their presentations and use far too few tie downs or check-ins. And when they do, they are usually closed ended which lead their prospect to reveal little. Use these more open-ended tie downs to engage AND learn crucial buying motives:

“That’s how we drive the leads….now tell me about how you would get the most out of them?”


“That’s one of our biggest selling points….tell me: how would this impact how you’re currently doing things?”


“Do you see how this works?” – And then: “How might this work for you?”


“Are you with me there?” – And then: “What questions do you have?”


“That’s a nice feature, don’t you think?” – And then: “How would that work for you?”


“Is this sounding like it might work for you?” (O.K., there I go again! Do you see how after a few tie downs, it’s just natural for you to start closing?)
#3: General tie downs are useful at any point of your presentation. Customize from any of these to fit your product/service:

“What do you think of this so far?”


“Would this location work for you?”


“How many locations would this work for?”


“How many departments would want one of these as well?”


“That’s pretty special, isn’t it?”


“Do you see why this is so popular?”


“Tell me, would that fit into your budget?”


“Most people like this – how does it sound to you?”


“Will that work?”


“What else do you need to know?”


“What other area are you interested in?”


“Would that be a deal killer for you?”


“Would that be enough for you to move forward with this?”


“Tell me: how close are you to wanting to move forward with this?” (There I go once again!)

Let me reiterate that using tie down’s gives you the intel you don’t have because you can’t see your prospect’s reaction (because you’re selling over the phone). Therefore, it’s critical for you to begin using more of the above tie downs during every conversation. Remember, the more you can get your prospect talking, the more you’ll learn what it will take to close them…

How to Make Cold Calling Easy

Anyone who has to cold call as part of their sales career knows how hard it can be. Many sales reps cringe as they dial a number and wait for the receptionist to answer:

“Who’s calling?”

“Will he know what this call is regarding?”

These and other questions create such call reluctance that it’s no wonder the programs that claim “Cold calling is dead!” are such big sellers.

Unfortunately, if you’re in sales, you know that cold calling is NOT dead and you have to do it day in and day out to keep your pipeline full.

So how can you make cold calling easy?

By attending this free webinar: “The 5 Secrets to Effective Cold Calling,” held on Wednesday, November 18th 2015 at 12pm Eastern, 9am Pacific, Register Now

In addition, here are a few simple tips to help make cold calling easy for you:

Tip #1: Use a script. You absolutely must script out what you’re going to say and the questions you’re going to ask. Doing so will give you the confidence to overcome the gatekeeper’s interrogation and help you eliminate the um’s and uh’s that make you sound unprofessional.

Tip #2: Be prepared for the brush offs and blow offs you’re going to always get like: “Just email me something…” Instead of asking for their email address and ending the call, say:

“I’d be happy to. I’ve got several different things I can send to you, let me just ask you a couple of questions so I send you the right one. Now how are you currently handling….”

Tip #3: Learn how to quickly engage the decision maker by asking them a question as early as possible. Most sales reps start by delivering a much too long monologue on their product or service and this just turns off the prospect.

Tip #4: Change your attitude to begin expecting the no’s. Believe it or not, most sales people actually expect everyone to love what they’re selling. That’s not going to happen (as you’ve found out), so expect it! When someone tells you no, be prepared for it and end the call with the “Next In Line” script:

“No problem, but let me ask you: If you ever find the need to look for a different supplier in the future, could I be the first in line you reach out to?”

Then get their contact info and email them yours. This allows you to end each call with a success which makes it easier to keep calling…

Tip #5: Pick up the phone. Although this may sound obvious, the way to make cold calling easy is to stop putting it off. Instead, make it the first thing you do in the morning, and then stay on the phone until you hit your call numbers for the day. You’ll find that as you get into a rhythm, it gets easier and easier to make those calls.

If you’d like more detailed scripts and techniques on making cold calling easy, you will benefit from learning these “5 Secrets to Effective Cold Calling”:

1) How to avoid getting screened out by the gatekeeper
2) A better opening that will set you apart and get your prospect to engage with you
3) How to build rapport in 5 seconds
4) How to overcome brush off objections
5) How to qualify for timeline and interest

Register Here for this FREE webinar on Wednesday, November 18th 2015 at 12pm Eastern, 9am Pacific. Space is limited, so sign up today!

Always Have This Close Handy…

How many times do you get the objection, “Well, let me talk to my (partner, boss, manager, spouse, etc.)”? In any kind of sale, this is one of the most common objections or stalls prospects use. And they use it because sales reps don’t seem to have any effective come back to it. Variations on this objection include:

“Let me run this by…”


“I’ll have to get with….”


“Let me check with…”


“I’ll show this to my boss and see what he wants to do…”

I’m going to give you the right rebuttal to this and give you a real life example of how I used this – and what I learned – just this week while I was closing a prospect on one of my training programs.

I was speaking with a customer who had recently purchased one of my book of phone scripts. I had never spoken to her before, but decided to call her and see how the scripts were working out for her.

During our conversation I learned what her company was about, what they sold and how many reps they had. I established that she was one of the owners.

After listening to exactly what she was trying to accomplish, I suggested helping her by writing customized scripts and having her record those sales presentations so I could revise and perfect her scripted sales approach.

Then I asked how that sounded.

And that’s when I got the objection above. She said: “I’ll run this by my partner…”

Now this is where 80% of sales reps let the prospect go with, “O.K., when should I follow up?”

That is the wrong thing to do.

Instead, the proper technique is to isolate this objection by taking the other decision maker out of it so you can gauge how your prospect truly feels about it.

Because let’s face it: if your prospect isn’t sold, the other decision maker isn’t going to be either…

So here’s the close you need here: I told her: “That’s great, definitely show it to your partner. Let me ask you: If you’re partner says it sounds good, what would you do then?”

And this is where this technique really pays off. If she had said, “I’d do it!” then I would have set some coaching times (nothing in stone; just set some tentative dates – another form of a trial close), but if she said what she did, then I would know exactly where I stood.

She said, “I’d then go back to my reps and tell them to use the scripts I just bought and see how it goes. I’d tell them I’d already spent a lot of money on them and they needed to produce before I’d be willing to spend more.”

How’s that for a good answer?

Now you’re probably thinking, “Good answer? Mike, it doesn’t sound like she’s going to buy!”

But that’s O.K. Some will, some won’t, who’s next?

You see, what’s so good about this technique, and her honest answer, is that she revealed that she isn’t going to be a deal. That means I get to move on…

Compare this to how most sales reps would just schedule a call back and then begin chasing her?

How many of these types of unqualified leads currently clog your pipeline?

When I say this is the type of close to always have handy, I mean it. Every time you find yourself in this situation, always, always, isolate this objection/stall to find out where you really stand.

It will save you tons of time (and frustration); time you can spend prospecting and finding real buyers…

Positive Statements that Help You Sell

When I began my sales career all those years ago, I was told that at the bottom of all successful sales was a transfer of emotion – my manager told me that I was either transferring my positive feelings about my product onto my buyer, or he/she was transferring their negative feelings about it to me. Whoever was able to transfer more of their emotion and feeling won.

Now that may seem a bit simplistic to you now, but if you look at the essence of it, there is a lot of truth to it. You’ve probably heard some of the sayings like, “Enthusiasm sells!” or, “Whoever has the strongest reasons to buy or not buy usually wins,” and things like that. My question to you is: “Are you enthusiastically presenting your product or service on every call?”

I’m sure you know the difference between having a good day and having a bad day, right? Have you ever noticed how on fire you are right after a big sale? You’re positive, on top of the world, unstoppable, right? This is why good sales managers tell their reps to “get back on the phone while you’re hot.” Have you ever noticed how objections aren’t quite so bad when you’re in such a positive mood?

And the converse is true as well, isn’t it? Have you ever noticed how, when you’re having a bad day, it’s easy to be put off when cold calling and how you don’t pitch with quite the same level of power? Have you even given up after being put off or after an objection, only to then say something like this to yourself: “Well, this just isn’t my day. Maybe I should just stop calling today and try again tomorrow?”

If you’re in sales, then I bet you can relate to both of those scenarios, can’t you?

What I’ve found over the years is that most sales people let their prospect’s mood affect and lead theirs rather than the other way around. After listening to thousands of calls over the years, I can hear how a sales rep’s voice drops or slumps as soon as a prospect cuts them off or tells them they don’t have much time, or worse, that they don’t really see the value in their product or service.

Top reps, on the other hand, have a different approach. They know that it is their job to transfer their belief and attitude to their prospects, and they stand ready with a list of “Power Statements” that help get their prospect into the proper mindset. They then overwhelm them with their positive attitude and don’t give up until they get the sale.

Here are a few statements you should have ready at all times when you’re closing or cold calling. Any one of these can mean the difference between who catches whose attitude and who sells who:

Positive Statement #1
“________ once you truly understand how this works, you’ll be as impressed as I was during my interview here. Let me take just a moment to fill you in…”

Positive Statement #2
“_________, I guarantee you’ll be 100% happy you took just a moment with me to show you what this can do for you….”

Positive Statement #3
“Are you ready to be amazed today? – because after I show you the changes we’ve made to this (product or service), you’ll be more than surprised. Go ahead and open that…”

Positive Statement #4
“________, virtually nothing that you know about this (product or service) has remained the same – in fact, we’ve made every part of it better and added some features that you’ll soon never be able to live without. For example…”

Positive Statement #5
“I’m sure you wouldn’t mind learning why we’re the best selling (your product or service) in the marketplace, so let’s do this – go ahead and open that email and let me point out just two things that make us number one…”

Positive Statement #6
“_________, you do want to go with the best company you can for this with the best customer support and loyalty program, don’t you?”

Positive Statement #7
“________, I couldn’t wait to speak with you today. I’ve just had an update that will knock your socks off! Do me a favor and grab that brochure…”

Positive Statement #8
“_________, I couldn’t wait to speak with you today! So much good news has happened since we spoke last that I don’t even know where to begin. Tell you what, let’s start by reviewing that email I sent you…”

Positive Statement #9
“_________, there are three things that make me excited to come to work every day, and they also make all my clients excited to sign up with us. The first is….”

Positive Statement #10
“_________, are you ready to finally get the best (your product or service) on the market today? If so, then grab a pen and get ready to take some notes: I’ve got some exciting things to tell you today…”

If Prospect is Negative:

Positive Statement #11
“If that were true I wouldn’t be representing this… The fact is, most people don’t fully understand how this works, but once they do, they understand why we’re the number one product on the market. Let’s do this…”

Positive Statement #12
“Let me tell you just three reasons why we’re the number one brand in this industry, and if you still aren’t interested after that, then we’ll part friends. The first is our world class customer support…”

As you can see, by using these kinds of statements you are the one setting the tone of the call. Never forget that enthusiasm does sell, and always check your attitude before you pick up the phone – and have these statements ready!

How to Get Your Prospect Talking

Have you ever had a prospect who plays his feelings on your product or service “close to the vest”? Someone who simply won’t share much of their opinion one way or the other? Or should I say how many prospects do you have like that?

These days many prospects hide behind nebulous stalls like, “Let me think about it,” or “I’ll run this by the committee,” etc., and it’s often hard to know where they stand. And then it gets worse when you try to set an appointment to get back with them only to hear, “I’ll get back to you.”

If you’re struggling with prospects like this, then it’s time to learn some advanced closing skills that only the Top 5% are comfortable using: And that’s asking open ended questions and actually giving your prospect a chance to fully answer – negatively or positively. While this may sound easy to do, only the top, top pros know how to fully listen long enough for their prospect to tell them how they really feel. (HINT: they use their MUTE button!)

But to get your prospect to open up, you need some well-crafted scripts that you adapt and make your own so you can deliver them sincerely and not sound salesy. Take some time to review the choices below and do just that – make them your own:

Question One:

“You know ________, we all buy emotionally and go with our gut feelings. Share with me: What is your gut telling you is good about our solution, and what is it telling you isn’t so good?”

[Now hit MUTE and listen – same advice after each rebuttal]

Question Two:

“__________, I’m sure you’re weighing this purchase against some of our competition, so tell me, in what ways are we better than your next option, and in what ways are we weaker?”

Question Three:

“_________, you’ve probably heard of the old Ben Franklin way of making a decision haven’t you? (Wait for a response)

Ben would make a list of all the reasons to make a decision to move forward with something, and all the reasons not to. If the reasons were stronger to move forward, he would.

So tell me, what are the reasons, as you see them, for moving forward with this, and what are the reasons not to?”

Question Four:

“_________, I know there are other people who need to weigh in on the final decision on this, so tell me, if you had to put a wager on it, would you bet that there were more votes on moving forward on this or more votes against it?”


“And why is that?”

Question Five:

“Now _________, I know you like what we have, and there are probably some things you don’t like. Tell me, if we could deliver more of what you DO like, what would that be?”


“And if we could give you less of what you don’t like, what would that be?”

And then, “And why is that?”

Question Six:

“__________, some people love our solution and some people – believe it or no – hate it. Tell me, what do you LOVE about us, and what do you hate about this that is preventing you from moving forward right now?”

As you can see, these scripts are designed to get someone who is noncommittal to begin opening up and to tell you where they stand – both positively and negatively. Once you know where someone is emotionally and logically with your product or service, you’ll have the leverage to adjust your close and get closer to a sale.

Stop Pitching the Gatekeeper – and What to Do Instead

One of the biggest mistakes many inside sales reps make is pitching the gatekeeper. For some reason they feel compelled to pour their pitch on the first pair of ears they get, and, unfortunately, this usually gets them into trouble.

To start with, the gatekeeper is just that – someone whose job it is to screen salespeople from getting through to the decision maker. The worst thing you can do is immediately identify yourself as a salesperson by pitching them in hopes that they’ll be so moved by your pitch that they’ll want to put you through. Doesn’t happen. Instead, all you do is trigger their automatic response of, “Just email something, and I’ll forward it to my boss.” Or worse…

By identifying yourself as a salesperson, you’ll actually be making it easier for the gatekeeper to just blow you off with, “We’re not interested.” Think about it: They take sales calls like yours all day long, and after a while (like two days on the job), they’re as sick of getting phone calls as you are of making them. So leading with your pitch is the last thing you want to do.

Also, the reason you don’t want to pitch the gatekeeper is because they don’t care what you’re selling and they usually have zero say in whether to buy from you or not. Again, they are gatekeepers – not decision makers. Pitching them will mean nothing, and all it will do is annoy them and waste your time.

So, what to do? Your job, believe it or not, is to get past the gatekeeper with as little interrogation as possible (and with as little pitching as possible), and connect with the decision maker. That is the person you want to give your brief pitch to… So here are a copy of ways to avoid pitching the gatekeeper, and, instead, getting to the decision maker:

1) By now, you’ve already read about my “Please, please, please” technique. Some of you are already using it and isn’t it great? For those of you who missed it, it’s simple. To avoid 65% (or more) of any screening, simply open your call with:

“Hi, this is (your name) with (your company), could you please connect me with (DM’s name) please?”

That’s it. To read the whole technique, simply check out my blog here:

2) If you don’t know the name of the person you’re looking for, simply say:

“Hi, this is (your name) with (your company) and I need a little bit of help please.”

After they ask how they can help you, you say, “I’m looking for the person who handles X – who would that be please?”

That’s it. No pitching, no pleading to be put through, instead you’re simply asking for their help and then directing them to put you through. If you ask this in a polite way, you’ll get through 65% of the time.

3) Now here comes the tricky part: In some cases, the gatekeeper has a little more authority, like an office manager, or executive assistant, etc. In this case it’s O.K. to deliver your opening value statement – just so they know what it’s about – but then it’s highly important to try to get through to the decision maker as soon as possible. Here are a few ways to do that:

The best way is to quickly qualify for decision maker status. As soon as you ask if they make the decision on what you’re selling, and are told that someone else makes the decision, that is your cue to ask to be put through to the actual DM. Try:

“Oh, I see, tell you what: If you’d put me through to (boss) briefly, I’ll explain what this is about and if he (or she) is interested in learning more, I can make an appointment that fits his/her schedule. I’ll be happy to hold on while you connect me…”


“It sounds like the best thing to do before I send something is to have just a few words with (DM), and that way I can save us both a lot of time depending on their level of interest. Could you please let (DM) know I’m holding please?”


“Before I bother you with emails and then follow up calls, why don’t you put me in touch with your (boss) briefly, and I’ll see if there’s an interest on his/her side. If so, I’ll take the appropriate action, if not, we’ll save us all a lot of time. Could you let (the boss) know I’m holding, please?”

4) Sometimes the gatekeeper or office manager will want a little more information on what it is you’re offering, and in this case it’s O.K. to give them more details, but just make sure that you qualify for their role in the decision process and that you ask for the best way to connect with the other decisions makers if possible. Sample questions include:

“And beside yourself, who makes the decision on this?”

Layer with:

“Great, can I connect briefly with them to make sure this is something they’d like to know more about?”


“If this is something you like, how much influence do you have in the decision process?”

If they tell you their boss would make the final decision, then layer with:

“I understand completely. Tell you what, so we don’t waste your time or his/hers, let me have a brief word with them, and I’ll see if this is something they even want to learn more about. I’ll be happy to hold on…”

If you’re then told they aren’t available, try to get their name or direct email address or extension, and when you call back if the assistant isn’t available, ask for the DM directly.

The major lesson here is that you must resist the temptation to pitch the gatekeeper, or to give too much of your pitch to the assistant if they aren’t the final DM. Give just enough to qualify for interest, and then try to get through to the actual DM. This will save you a lot of time and headache later on.

15 Ways to Handle the Competition Objection

Targets hit in the center by arrows

Targets hit in the center by arrows

We all face competition. There is always someone who can do it cheaper, or faster, or better (at least in the mind of your prospect). Because of this, prospects – and even customers – are constantly on the search for a better deal. Knowing how to handle the competition objection effectively can mean the difference between winning the sale or suffering that sinking feeling of having lost the business to someone else.

There are several times you can handle the competition objection, but surprisingly most sales reps wait until it comes up at the end of their closing presentation. This is the worse time to handle it because you have already given your pricing and options and sometimes even your best deal. While you may have to handle the objection of competition during the close – and I’ll give you some scripting to do just that later in this article – the best time to handle it is in the beginning, while qualifying. Here are some ways you can do that:

Qualifying for competition:

Option #1:
“_________, let’s talk a little bit about who else you’re looking at for this – who’s top of your list right now?”

If you’re uncomfortable bringing up potential competition, let me assure you of two things: One, if they are shopping you, they are most likely shopping others, so don’t be surprised, and Two, trust me, it’s better to know in advance who you’re up against so you can position yourself to win the business during the close. And always ask this in an assumptive way…

Option #2:
“How many companies are you getting quotes on for this?”

Once again, don’t worry about introducing the concept of getting quotes, if they are going to do this (and most are), it’s better to get an idea of it now. If they tell you they are getting three quotes (doesn’t matter how many), layer this with: “And who have you liked so far?” Again, be assumptive with this.

Option #3:
“_________, how does your current supplier fit into all this?”

This is a nice opened ended, assumptive way to get your prospect to reveal why they might be moving away from their current vendor – or why they might still be considering using them. A great way to layer this is to ask:

Option #4:
“And if you find that we can give you a better deal than you’re getting right now, what will you do next?”

Obviously you want them to reveal that they’ll take it back to their current vendor to get them to lower their price, and this is what you want to know in advance. Asking this question in an opened ended way like this often gets them to tell you this. You can also ask this in a more direct way:

Option #5:
“________, if we can show you how we can take care of what you’re doing now, and do so for less than you’re paying your current vendor, what will prevent you from taking it back to them and getting them to just drop their price to keep your business?”

Listen carefully to not only what your prospect says here, but how they say it. If they hesitate or if their voice goes up or wavers a bit, then you’re in trouble. You can also handle it this way:

Option #6:
“Now _________, after we do our analysis, I’m pretty convinced that we’ll be able to save you money just like we do our other clients. But ________, I have a concern and I need you to level with me: Sometimes we go through this work to find these savings, and after we do, some companies use them to get their current vendor to lower their prices. Do you see what I mean?”

[Wait for response]

“So I’m happy to do the work for you and show you some savings, but let me ask you: what is the chance that you’ll take these back to your current vendor and do the same?”


“Let me ask you: if we can also show you savings, what would prevent you from doing the same?”

Option #7:
“________, what is going to be the deciding factor on who wins your business on this?”

And if it’s price, then layer with:

“O.K., then after you get all the quotes, will you at least let me compete against the lowest quote to see if I can do better?”

Handling competition during the close: If after you’ve presented your product or service your prospect says they want or need to check on other offers/estimates/quotes, then use the questions below to get your prospect to open up and possibly reveal what it might take for you to win the business:

Option #1:
“I understand, which way are you leaning right now?”

Option #2:
“What would it take for someone else to win your business?”

Option #3:
“What would it honestly take for you to choose us for this?”

Option #4:
“What don’t you see with our proposal that you see in others?”

Option #5:
“Are we in the running with what else you’ve seen out there?”

[If yes]

“What about us would take us out of the running?”


“What would you need to see to choose using us?”


“What can I do right now to insure that we win your business?”

Option #6:
“Obviously you’re going to show this quote to your current vendor – if they match the price, will you just stick with them?”

[If yes]

“What can I do to prevent that?”

Option #7:
“How many times have you taken other quotes to your current vendor?”

[If they tell you]:

“And what do they usually do?”

[If they say they lower their price to keep the business]:

“How can we break that cycle and get you the right pricing from the start?”

Option #8:
“_________, let’s take your lowest bid right now and compare it – services to services – to what we’re offing you. If I find you’re getting a better deal, I’ll tell you so. If I can beat it, then I’ll let you know that as well. Either way – You’ll Win! Do you have that other quote nearby?”

Remember, competition will always exist, but you can beat it and win business if you’re prepared with proven and effective scripts like those above. Pick your favorite ones and tailor them to your particular sale.

Seven Things to Say when Prospects Don’t Have the Time for Your Presentation

Young business dressed woman working at office desk.We’ve all been there – you call your prospect back at the appointed time for your presentation and they tell you any of the following:

This isn’t a good time, OR
They only have a few minutes, OR
They ask you in an exasperated tone, “How long will this take?” OR
They tell you they have a meeting in 10 minutes, can you give them the information anyway?
Or any other put off that will cut short the 30 minute comprehensive presentation you had planned.

Most sales reps respond to these objection-like receptions by asking if they would prefer to set another time. That response might be appropriate with the first put off – the “This isn’t a good time,” – but with any of the others, I have a better technique for you.

Let’s start at the beginning. First, when you get this kind of response from a prospect you qualified a week or so ago, don’t be surprised! Face it: it’s a law in all sales – Leads Never Get Better! If you sent out the hottest lead ever, a “10” on a scale of 1 – 10, then when you call them back, have you ever noticed that now they’re about a “7”?

And of course since most sales reps don’t qualify thoroughly enough, most of the leads they stuff into their pipeline are made up of sixes and sevens. And you can imagine how they are when reps reach them. So expect that your leads are going to drop in interest and receptiveness when you call them back, and then be prepared with a best practice approach to handling them. Here’s what to do:

Whenever a prospect responds to your call to do a presentation with one of the responses above – the “How long will this take?” – kind of response, don’t offer to call them back later, rather, get them to reveal their true level of interest to you and get them to tell you exactly how to pitch them to get the deal. Here are a number of statements you can use to do just that:


“Sure, I can take as long or little as you need. Let’s do this: why don’t you tell me the top three things you were hoping to learn about this, and I’ll drill right down and cover those areas for you. What’s number one for you?”


“Absolutely, we can do this pretty quickly. Tell me, what would you like to know most about how this might work in your environment?”


“I understand, sounds like I caught you at a bad time. Let’s do this: If you needed to see or learn just one thing about this to determine if it might actually work for you, what would that be?”


“No problem. Our presentation is pretty in depth, but I can do this. Go ahead and tell me two things that are absolute deal breakers for you, and I’ll see if we pass the test. And then if we do, we’ll schedule some more time later to go into detail on how the rest works, fair enough?”


“In ten minutes, I can show you some things that will help you determine whether or not you’d like to spend more time with me later. In the meantime, let me ask you – what would you need to see the most to say yes to this?”


“I understand, we’re all busy. Let me just ask you: has anything changed from when we last spoke?” (Now REALLY listen…)


“Tell you what: let’s reschedule something for later when you have more time, but in the ten minutes we do have, let me ask you some questions to determine whether this would still be a good fit for you…” (Now thoroughly re-qualify your prospect)

As you can see, the responses above are all aimed at getting your prospect to reveal to you both their level of interest and what it is going to take to sell them – or whether or not they are still a good prospect for you. Have some fun with these; customize them to fit your personality or the personality of the person you’re speaking with. Find your favorites and then, as always, practice, drill and rehearse until they become your automatic response when your prospect tells you they don’t have time for your presentation.