7 Must-Have Skills for Every Sales Professional

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sales skills

The best sales teams are relentless, dedicated and are all about results. The sales force in any company is the rails upon which the company runs towards the desired revenue.  Exceptional sales prowess doesn’t come overnight, it the result of hard work and strategy. Here are 7 tips for becoming an exceptional sales professional.

Know Your Products

A sales rep who doesn’t perfectly understand the product they are pushing has already failed. Product knowledge is the first step in succeeding as a sales professional. You should understand your products very well such that if followup questions are thrown your way you won’t start using cliches like, ‘Let me check that up.’, ‘I will have to confirm that.’ and others.

At the same time, you should be able to preempt as much as possible the possible questions that potential clients might have and have ready answers on your fingertips. Remember, perfect product knowledge adds to your confidence and credibility. 

Build Rapport and Network

sales skills

Your work as a sales professional’s is centered around meeting potential clients, understanding their pain points and convincing them that the solutions to their problems are found in your company products.  Engaging a total stranger and convincing them is a skill that combines talent and art. Rapport creation is about context, content and timing. Context- where you meet the client and under what circumstance. Content- what you tell them should be relevant to their needs. Timing – Is it the right time to talk about your product? Assess the situation and gauge what kind of reception you are likely to get.

Communicate Appropriately

In sales, how you talk to a prospective client matters. Your tone of voice, body language, gestures and facial expression are everything. Even on the phone, a potential client can ‘hear’ your confidence and credibility. Practice your sales pitch voice till you master it. Ensure you are polite, formal, and professional. Also, ensure that you speak clearly and vary intonation naturally to avoid a monotone. Most importantly, be yourself. It is easier to be natural this way.

Listen Actively

sales skills

It is easy to talk to prospective clients. Listening is, however, not that easy. Active listening is a skill that you must learn. People can tell when you are not listening to them. The fact that you are waiting for them to finish talking to reply can be very apparent. Naturally, people appreciate a good listener. Clients are no exception. They would like to know that you understand their problems and point of view. If you listen to potential clients and attend to their specific needs to offer relevant solutions, you are more likely to convert them.

Preventing Objection

Expert sales professionals understand the art of preventing objections by prospective clients. You should be strategic and think ahead before approaching a prospective client. Go through typical objections and have a ready answer to circumvent them. In fact, try to avoid the typical client objections like,”I don’t need this right now.” or “Call me next month.”

You have to be very alert to prevent a sale from ending prematurely. Even when an objection occurs, you should be able to empathize and ask valuable questions. understand why there is an objection and the associated concerns. Offer clarity and up sale relevant customized solutions.

Manage Your Time Well

sales skills

This is an almost obvious one. Time management is an important skill in any role. It is more important when dealing with clients likely to add to your company’s revenue. Aside from keeping time when meeting clients, you also need to manage your time when dealing with clients on different levels of the conversion funnel. Do not waste too much time on a deal whose conversion rate is less than 50% while leaving low-hanging fruits in terms of deals.

Closing Technique

You have to know how to push prospective clients, sell company products and sign the deals. While most new clients try to hold back or push signing dates, you have to possess the skill of closing the deal. This is done with the right mix of measured pressure and value offer.

Get Sought-After Sales Skills

Are you a sales enthusiast with a passion for sales and having trouble finding a job? Join the next class to get sales training and there after get connected with employers looking for sales professionals. Apply here today.

Doreen Mueke
Doreen is the Senior Content Marketer at Ringier One Africa Media.