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Cool, Calm, Collected and Closing Deals

It is not uncommon for me to hear from an agent that they went to a presentation, went for the close and didn’t get the merchant to sign that day. I can tell you from experience that is very difficult to find a customer that is willing to close the deal on the spot, don’t […]


It is not uncommon for me to hear from an agent that they went to a presentation, went for the close and

didn’t get the merchant to sign that day.  I can tell you from experience that is very difficult to find a customer that is willing to close the deal on the spot, don’t get me wrong, there are some out there, but you have to find them first. If you are looking to succeed as a merchant services agent, you must stay cool, calm and collected if you want to close deals. You might go to a merchant that you are not expecting to close and they might just be ready to look at pricing and sign the application (I love when that happens). However, that doesn’t always happen, so it helps if you have an understanding of what is going on in the merchant’s mind. There are really two questions in their mind.

#1 “Does this make sense for my business?” and

#2 “Do I really want to do Business with this guy?” Many agents get discouraged, sad or even depressed because they have a few deals on the table that they were not able to close when they wanted to.  You have to understand that it is an ongoing process of qualifying the customer and leading with questions that will allow you to close the deal. I have been selling merchant services for a long time and even with my experience and marketing efforts it still takes me 3 or more visits to close some deals.  The reason I am not always able to close a deal on the spot vary, but some common ones would be time constraint, other decision makers, past experiences and other competitors. Your job is to find out what is going to move the customer. Many times when we meet with a customer, we expect to close them on the spot because we are showing them savings. Savings are a great tool, but by themselves, they will not close a deal. This is only half of the equation.  Sure the customer understands that this deal makes business sense, but have you convinced them that they should work with you? Most of the time, it does not make a difference whether we save them $50 per month or $400 per month, as long as the merchant realizes we are saving them money, it just comes down to why they should work with our company.  When I talk to agents that have cannot close deals even with significant savings, it is usually not because they lack sales ability or experience and it usually has nothing to do with the amount of savings, it boils down to a lack of confidence that they project to the customer. They know they have not built any trust with the prospective client and that effects their pitch. So, how do we close more deals?

Rather than getting frustrated when the merchant is not ready to sign today, keep calm and close them with a tactic. If they have any questions, make sure you can answer them before you push them to make a final decision. You should say something like, “May I ask you something Mr. Customer? Is there anything that concerns you about my offer that would keep you from moving forward?” You can also build towards the close by saying something like, “Do you see where this program will save you money Mr Customer?” or ” Do you follow me so far? Can I ask you Mr customer, we just went over the cost analysis where do you see the biggest area of savings for your company?” When they answer those questions, LISTEN carefully and go for the close. If they respond “I see that debits are where I’m saving the most of my money”  I would respond: “YES!! Ok great, I’m glad you see where that benefits you, now let me show you how that looks on the pricing page…” (SHOW HIM) then say ” to stop the money from leaving your pocket now, I need you to initial here!!” So, once I have shown him the benefits and I have asked him questions to confirm that he understands the benefits, I show him how that matches up on the pricing page of the application and ask him to initial the page.  (If they initial, you know you have a deal.) Closing techniques 101: Here are few closing tactics you can use.

The Calculator Close:  Rather than just quoting a price, get out a fairly large calculator and bash away on the keys for a while. Mutter things like “less discount” and “I’ll take another 2% off, just for you.” Then either read out the price per month or turn the calculator around to show the customer. (then move to the paperwork)

Using the Effective Rate:  Write the new effective rate down along with the old one and figure out the savings in front of the client then look surprised and say something like, “So, the new effective rate with us is 3.09%… Hold on a minute …is this right, with the discount rate reduction and the extra discount for signing today … (SHOW THEM) we are going to save you X amount per year, wow, does that look right to you?” This close is particularly popular with people who don’t care what you say, but only what you give them.. i call them “Bottom line people” they speak Numbers not English!

Best Time to Close:  When people are procrastinating or will be back, emphasis how now is the best time to buy. All sales people know that there are no be-backs. Invoke seasonal effects, such as Summer, Christmas and other holidays. Remind them of other short-term reasons, including sales, and special offers you come up with. Find out other personal reasons why it is good to buy now, such as their partner’s birthday, etc. You can even switch this objection around by saying, “Really no time is any better than any other time to use our service, I’m sure you would agree that the only thing that will change from this month to next month is that you will spend more for merchant services if you stay with your current company, right?”

Delayed close:  Do not go for the sale now.  Give them time to think.  Tell them that they probably need time to consider the offer you have made. Basically you see you are not going to close and get a yes now, but you think you might get the sale later. Use the delayed close when:

  • You can see that they are not going to decide now.
  • You have built enough trust and interest that you are reasonably convinced they will seriously consider the deal and are likely to call back.
  • Given some more time, it is likely that they will buy with more confidence when you give them room to breath!! (Analytic people).
  • The relationship is important to you, and them making a wrong decision now would affect the chances of making sales in the future.
  • Combine this with setting up the next meeting, when perhaps you will be able to solidly close the deal. (Time, date and assume they are going to fill out paperwork then)

Economic Close:  Focus on the overall economic situation, showing how the cost is less by considering certain factors.

  • Show how buying from your competitors may include hidden costs such as equipment, annual fees, etc.
  • Structure deals for them that will cost less overall.
  • Talk about the longer-term costs. (1st year savings 3rd year and 5th year with us)
I hope these closing tips help you!
James Shepherd

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