When it comes to B2B sales calls, the primary goal of the sales rep is to extract valuable information from the other person on the line. If you’re a seasoned sales professional, you already know the best way to get information is to ask smart questions. But this is often easier said than done.
Good questions and the answers they produce can make a huge difference in your ability to close a deal.
So keep reading as we provide you with our top 12 B2B sales questions to close deals faster.
1. How did you hear about us?
Let’s start with an easy one—How did you hear about my product or company? This is helpful for a few reasons.
It provides insight into where your leads are coming from and what channels are providing you with the most sales-ready prospects. Although these are typically marketing concerns, knowing this information will allow you to prioritize your outreach and provide anecdotal feedback to those responsible for lead generation.
This question also gives you immediate insight into what’s important to this person. For example, do they value peer recommendations? If so, great – make sure you show them plenty of case studies.
2. Why look for a solution now?
Was there a specific event or motivator that led this person to your product? This insight will give you valuable information about timeliness and urgency. From here you’ll be able to estimate the length of the buyer’s journey and set your expectations accordingly.
3. What are you specifically looking for in a solution?
As a sales rep, it is crucial to understand the fine line between a want and a need. You may think you’re on track to close a deal when your solution meets 22 of your prospect’s 25 requirements.
But, if those 22 factors are simply ‘nice-to-haves’, and the final three are ‘must-haves’, you’re guaranteed to lose the opportunity. Ultimately, knowing where your prospect places the most importance, will help you understand your buyer’s mindset and tailor your sales pitch to their needs.
For more information, check out: 3 Ways to Set Prospect Expectations During the Sales Process.
4. What’s your decision-making process like?
Obviously, this question helps you understand how your prospect and their organization go about making a purchase decision. Armed with this information, you’ll be able to influence, control, and manage the entire buying process.
5. Who are the primary stakeholders?
This question serves your selling strategy in a number of ways. First of all, it allows you to prioritize who you should engage with most, and how. B2B purchase decisions have many moving parts. Knowing who each person is, and how their influence affects the purchase, will allow you to tailor your strategy to each account’s needs.
However, it’s also important to determine who the purchase will impact. For example, the marketing may utilize your product, but who will implement it? The IT department? If so, how can you ensure this process goes quickly and smoothly for them?
Information about stakeholders allows you to provide proper training and assistance to each person on the buying committee.
6. When was the last time you made a purchase decision on this scale?
If your prospect is able to cite a somewhat recent purchase, you’re in luck. This information indicates that they’re an active buyer. However, if it’s been years since they’ve made such a decision, it might be more difficult to close the deal.
It’s also important to know how other organizations have fared with your prospects. Has one organization significantly impressed them? If so, try to mimic their approach. Was there an instance where another organization failed miserably? Learn from their mistakes.
7. What does your timeline look like?
This question is simple: it provides you with a timeline for the sale. question number two, this question will provide you with a sense of urgency, and ultimately will allow you to allocate time and resources to better serve your prospect.
8. How much money are you looking to spend?
This question acts as another great qualifier. It’s important to know where your prospect sits financially to determine whether or not they can even afford your product.
Don’t worry if you don’t receive a straightforward answer. Most prospects won’t offer a price range until they’ve come to fully understand the value of your product or service. This provides you with one key insight: are they looking for the best solution or the cheapest?
9. What other products/solutions are you hoping to integrate with?
It’s important to develop a working knowledge of your prospect’s current technology stack. This information will allow you to outline exactly how your product or service will fit into their current workflow, or even better, improve upon it. Prospects prefer products that streamline their efforts.
10. How can I best help you succeed?
The answer to this question will differ drastically from one prospect to another. Some will want a hand to hold throughout the entire process, from implementation to optimization. Others will simply want access, and to be left alone to do their work.
Questions like these demonstrate your desire to help your prospect and allow you to provide them with the experience they’re looking for.
11. Do you have any questions?
This is one of the more important questions a sales rep can ask. There’s no better way to gain access to what your prospect is thinking than to ask. This not only ensures that you’re both on the same page, but it also demonstrates your willingness to listen.
12. Is there anything that might stop this deal from happening?
Even if your prospect explicitly states that they intend to make a purchase, it’s important not to celebrate a closed deal too soon. Before you pop the champagne, be sure there is nothing that could potentially break a deal off. These answers can help you prepare for and navigate potential roadblocks.
Questions are an integral component of the B2B sales process. They not only help move your prospects through the buying stages faster but can also make a rep more effective and efficient. Stop talking at your prospects, and instead take a minute to listen.