How to meet your sales target by listening when selling

Written by Kyra Kirrane

Building a strong rapport with your client is key to increasing your sales and maintaining a strong business relationship. The importance of listening when selling cannot be understated; active listening is a vital communication technique that improves understanding and minimises conflict in any type of relationship.

Too often, we are guilty of listening to respond, rather than listening to understand. Here’s how listening when selling can improve your relationship and your bottom line.

Listening when Selling Improves Understanding

When you listen actively, you stay silent and listen to what your client is saying. Pay attention to the words they use, as well as how they use them.

Nonverbal communication is said to make up about 80% of all communication! So paying attention to your clients body language, tone of voice, and facial expressions is critical. Here are the main types of nonverbal communication.

Focusing on your client will give you insight into who they are and what is important to them. This is key to offering them products and services that not only meet their needs but satisfy their greatest concerns.

Active Listening Negates Misunderstanding

Being an active listener helps you to avoid misunderstandings. A great technique for effective communication is to actively listen, then summarise what your client has said. Paraphrase their thoughts back to them to confirm you understood correctly.

The ideal response to this paraphrasing is, “That’s right”. If you missed a priority, your client might highlight it by saying, “Yes, but this also concerns me”. Make notes of these priorities.

Great Techniques for Listening when Selling:

There are a number of communication techniques you can use when engaging in active listening. These tips should help you to better understand your clients concerns, their needs and wants, and how your offering might be suitable to them. Take a look at the techniques below:

• Ask open-ended questions to make a connection with your client, rather than extracting simple answers from them. Open-ended questions show that you’re interested in your client as a person.

• Paraphrase things your client says to help you gain a better understanding of their needs and wants. Sometimes, when we translate someone’s thoughts into our own words, we identify small miscommunications.

• Identify and validate your clients concerns to show that you understand and empathise with them. Express that you are with them on this journey to find a turnkey solution that empowers them and their organisation.

Listening when selling is an important sales tactic that helps to build and maintain high-quality business relationships. Speaking of tactics, here’s an article we created about the difference between strategy and tactics in a sales business. Add active listening to your sales tactics and watch as your relationships transform.

Humanising the sales process aids connection and improves the sales experience for all stakeholders. Are you motivated to incorporate it into your professional and personal relationships?