How to recover from a lost sale

The seller’s life is not easy.

Over the course of a single day, several negotiations are developed and a set of expectations is mounted on the psychological of each salesperson.

It is quite common for salespeople to try to deny that such expectations exist and that they are affected by lost sales. While searching for this text, I found a text that said: “One day it will happen, you will lose a sale.”

The seller who does not lose business every day, is the one who does not sell every day.

That’s why we need to learn to deal with losses and not hide them and pretend they don’t happen. Furthermore, it is necessary to think that many of these sales have different weights for those who are negotiating.

A big sale can be worth a good commission that will take a financial squeeze, it can represent a difficult goal to achieve or that pleasure to raise morale, which is no longer very high.

There is more to a sale than a simple yes or no.

Look for the lesson

The first point, and perhaps more obvious when we lose an important sale, is to seek learning.

Understand what the reasons were and whether the decision is related to any technical failure, any need not met by your product or service, or conditions that could have been negotiated to convince the customer.

It is important to write and detail the closing process and the reason for the loss. This detailing process is your reflection on what happened.

If conditions were right, it is time to talk to the manager and question some assets to be used in future negotiations. If it was a personal technical flaw, it’s time to do an intensive and develop some scripts to help in this difficulty. And, of course, if it was a failure of the product itself, conveying the idea that this need is causing important sales to be affected and accepting that from then on, it is not your fault.

Make an easy sale

There is a common reflex when important things go wrong. When the seller sees that he lost a sale, he looks for another one as important, and tries to overcompensate the previous loss.

As the chances are more on the side of loss, it is normal for this behavior to create a loss accumulation and, of course, an accumulation of frustrations.

When something goes wrong, try to close a simpler and more accurate sale, even if the commission is not so good or the ticket is not so high. The idea is simply to do some simpler trades to regain confidence, before moving on to bigger and more intense negotiations.

Schedule a follow-up for casual polling

Big sales are often complex. After the sale, there is a whole delivery process that can be traumatic and not meet expectations. After all, the sale doesn’t end when it ends.

When you make a missed sale, schedule an activity for one or the months ahead, simply to do a follow-up and find out how the implementation was.

Of course, this is a big effort to make with a sale that has already been lost, but if the account is really good, a quick call just to see if they are satisfied and the product is working, can bring good surprises.

Chat with someone

It is common to hear that it is necessary to learn not to listen, and that this is the life of the salesperson. But as I commented at the beginning of the text, there are expectations at different levels, which are deposited upon opportunities according to their importance.

And the hardest part is that this is a psychological factor that is practically impossible to undo. We will have hopes and be frustrated with them, there is no point fighting too much.

When a very important sale goes wrong, sit down and talk to a colleague, or even the manager, if there is an opening. Even if it is often just the outburst, exposing the situation to another person helps to see the problem from another perspective.

Study your old sales, but move on

Use the power of CRM to go back to your old business and study your losses in detail. Observing patterns, it is possible to identify traits that can compromise the business and are going unnoticed.

For this, it is important to keep all CRM records well documented and up to date. The more information there is about your negotiations, the greater the chances of being able to learn from your own attitudes.

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