As phones become a primary source of contact between you and your customers, it’s more important than ever to properly structure a phone call and have a game plan. This will help you close more sales. Below, we have listed several ways that will help your company improve close rates over the phone allowing you to foster genuine connections with your customers and, in the end, make more money.
When several employees are making calls throughout the day, it's important to have a clear and outlined plan. Call scripts will help you communicate a consistent message. They will benefit your employees and your company in the following ways:
- Call scripts are widely used across most industries. Having a call script allows you to consistently and effectively control a call and achieve better close rates with your customers.
- Call scripts allows for a shorter training curve for employees that may be new to handling phone calls. With a well written script, even your newest employee will add sales to the bottom line almost immediately.
- Call scripts also assure that each call is handled consistently. Scripts help avoid future misunderstandings; they facilitate the correct communication of all necessary information.
Simplify & LISTEN
Listening to your customers and communicating clearly may seem like obvious tenets of effective communication, but all too often we forget the basics. We have all heard the saying, “Listen more than you speak”. Asking one question at a time and letting your customers talk without interruption is not only polite, but you will also find that customers will likely answer your future questions organically. As you listen to your customers, take notes so that you can reference information they offer later in the conversation. Phrases such as, “I recall you mentioned...” create trust with a customer and assures them that you are genuinely interested in what they’re saying.
Facilitate opportunities for the customer to meaningfully participate in the conversation. Everybody wants an opportunity to speak and feel heard; it makes us all feel important. By asking open-ended questions, you allow the customer to effectively and fully communicate his or her point.
You may be wondering, ‘What is an open-ended question?’ If your question can be answered with "yes" or "no", it is not an open-ended question. Open-ended questions welcome the customer to offer details when giving a response. This added information may be crucial for your success and the success of your technicians.
Open-ended questions often include combinations of who, what, where, when, why, and how. If your initial question doesn’t lead to a detailed response, try asking another question. For example:
- Close-ended question: Do you have pests?
- Open-ended questions: What kinds of pests do you think you have? Why do you think you have these pests? How have you tried to eliminate them from your home?
Provide Valuable Information To Your Customers
Believe it or not, your company offers more than just the best pricing around. There is a reason your customers called you, so why not educate them about your process? For example, you could explain how you will inspect their property, why you will be using a particular treatment, or how you will communicate with them in the future. Explaining the why and how of your services leaves customers feeling cared for, confident, and reassured in their choice to give their business to your company.
Know Your Product
All too often we find people rattling off chemical names or treatment options recommended and implemented by the onsite entomologist. The average consumer may not know what any of this means, and, in turn, they wind up feeling apprehensive about their choice to treat their property. Fear creates uncertainty, and uncertainty means they will likely need more time before making a decision. Know your products, and more importantly, be able to explain your products and services in multiple ways. Remove the scary part of pest control. Break down a process or a product into terms the average person can understand.
Asking closing questions helps you gauge how your customer feels. After explaining a product, ask your customer, “Does that work for you?” or, “How do you feel about that option?” Closing questions are effective ways to understand whether a customer is likely to purchase a product.
Closing questions will also help you gauge whether a customer felt like they were adequately informed about your services. Answers to questions such as, “Are you looking to have your house treated today or in the future?” helps you understand if your customer is ready to make a purchase. If a customer responds with, “today", but ultimately declines your service, we can assume that something you said did not work for them. Find out what did not work, and try to accommodate them with the next best solution.
Ideally, throughout the call, you will be able to intuit how your customer feels. Genuinely listen, take notes, and ask questions to maintain control of the conversation while making your customer feel like they’re valuable contributors to the conversation. If you spend the whole time talking and providing information up front, you may be left with nowhere to go by the time the conversation ends.
Every conversation is a give and take. Provide your customers with information, and be sure to hear what they are saying and respond to their questions. If you don’t know the answer to a question, find out for them so that you provide accurate information. Facilitating trust will foster long lasting relationships and keep customers coming back.