There are a lot of salespeople around the world whose sole concern is to close deals. It’s not surprising since competition is very fierce. But if you take the time to learn the other aspects of sales, not only will you be able to sell more products but you’ll also have more returning customers than ever before.
So, if you want to develop your relationship with both your existing and potential customers, you need to learn about active listening. Active listening is one of the best tools in customer service.
Why active listening matters
Some salespeople focus too much on using the tricks of the trade when closing sales that they tend to forget that their customers are people, too. And the problem is that customers don’t like it when they feel that the person they’re talking to is just trying to convince them to buy their products. So, avoid going straight to your sales pitch. It’s a lot like consultative sales wherein you try to learn more about the other person’s background and then, figure out what the right solution is.
Active listening gives customers the sense that you’re more concerned with helping them out rather than just selling them something. This way, they feel valued. And when they feel valued, they’re more likely to come back and purchase more of your products. On top of that, when you build strong customer relationships, they will more likely tell their friends and family members about you and your company.
How active listening works
Now, you might think that active listening isn’t a difficult thing to do, but you’d be surprised to know that many people think they’re capable listeners when they’re really not. Active listening isn’t just about letting the other person talk. It requires you not just to listen but also to participate in the conversation. When you’re actively listening to your customers, you’re also following the progression of their narratives.
For example, you’re running a light bulb company and a customer comes into your shop looking for some strip lights to be installed in their gallery. You have a stock of strip lights at the back, but instead of selling them the product right away, you ask first about their gallery. You ask about the layout, the color of the walls, and how many paintings are on display.
After listening to their answers, you surmise that strip lights aren’t the correct kind of lights for their needs. So, you suggest other light bulbs that can better illuminate their gallery. In the end, because you listened to your customer, you were able to provide the best solution for them. They then appreciate your efforts and because of that, even decides to go to you every time they need light fixtures. They might even recommend you to her friends.
Active listening is one of the best tools in a salesperson’s arsenal. Through this, you can make your customers feel valued and in turn, strengthen your relationships with them and inspire loyalty.