“ If I had an hour to solve a problem and my life depended on it, I would use the first 55 minutes determining the proper questions to ask” – Albert Einstein
Do you know why the majority of sales calls do not turn into sales?
Well… it is because the sales person does not ask the right questions.
Information is paramount in designing the opportunity to win a sale. Although there are a number of other factors that influence the outcome of a sales call, the reality is that the person who is well-informed is the only one who can close a sale at the end of the day.
And, good information is always a product of insightful questions. It is the questions that can help you identify the buying motivation which will help you present solutions that are tailored to the customer’s needs.
But, what questions should you ask?
How will you know what is a bad question or a good question?
To make your job easier, we list 10 sales questions you must ask on a discovery call to maximize the opportunity of winning a sale.
Read on to find out what these questions are.
Sales Questions You Should Ask
Before making a call, you should do extensive research about the revenue, the profit and the number of employees of the prospective client.
Your first question should then be a verification question to validate that the information you have collected is accurate. This will show the prospect that you are serious about making a deal.
You can thus ask a similar question to the one given below:
- Our research shows that your annual revenue is $60 million, your profit is $20 million, and you have 2,000 employees. Is that correct?
You should also focus on developing a profile of the organization to understand them better. So, you can ask close-ended questions, such as:
- How long have you been in business?
- What is your product or service and what problems are you solving?
- How has your business changed in the past year?
Although it could take several calls at different levels of an organization, you should also find answers to questions, such as:
- What research report do you follow and what does it tell you?
This is a critical question because knowing the answer to it will ensure your proposal does not differ from what they believe based on their research.
Moreover, to make a value-added proposition, you need to understand the buying motivation of the prospect and their affordability to buy a solution. You should thus ask questions like:
- Why do you need a solution? How is your problem impacting your business?
- What barriers are standing in the way of solving the problem?
- How soon do you need the solution and what is your budget?
It could be possible that the prospect has bought similar products to yours from your direct or indirect competitors. And, if you do not know that beforehand, you will fail to give strong reasons as to why the prospect should choose you over them.
Also, the prospect may even be unhappy with their current product and, if you can identify the pain point, the stage will be set for you to close the deal.
And, even if they are happy, there could be some areas of their current product that they might think should be improved. If your product addresses those areas with a better solution, you can even win a happy customer!
So, you must also ask questions like:
- Have you purchased a similar product before? And, what was your experience with using it? What did you like and dislike about the product?
You should ask the next question to understand the decision making process and the timeline associated with it:
- What is your decision making process, who takes the final call and how long does it take and what is the process for actually purchasing the product once you have decided to buy it?
The abovementioned sales questions should help you devise a framework to understand your prospective customers well enough.
No matter what the end result of your sales call, whether it is a disqualified prospect or a sales opportunity, always leave a positive and long-lasting impression on the prospect.
This will ensure that they will likely reach out to you again when they become sales-ready, even if they are not currently.
So, what sales questions do you ask on a discovery call? If you have some great ideas, feel free to share them with me in the comments section below.