What makes someone a super salesperson?

Abhishek Shah
5 min readSep 17, 2016

We all come across many salespeople in our lives, and you might even be acquainted with a handful of them who have these set of skills that might be hard to describe. Most of these are successful salespeople, not just because they might be naturally born as storytellers but most of the time it is because they have a great personality. It might seem as if they are luckier than the remaining lot and have all the knowledge and know the secret formula for increasing the revenue. While that may be the case for some of them, it is not wise to attribute the complete credit of their success to their personality or their skills of being a good storyteller.

These are the kind of people that any sales manager would fight for bringing them on his team. If you ask any of these effective salespeople, they would tell you that they just follow some of the good, old techniques of effective habits and hard work to achieve success. So, what are these habits or activities that help to draw a clear line between the high-performing salespeople, and the rest of the lot?

So whether you are managing a sales team or are selling your own product, let us take a look at some of the habits that help most of the salespeople to close the deal more often, irrespective of the product that you sell.

They Know their Stuff

Whether they are selling a product or service, top salespeople are always equipped with complete knowledge about what they are selling. Not only would they know about their products or services but they would also be well versed with their customer’s need as well as what they competitors are offering. Most of the customers, who make the purchase, attribute the main reason for selecting a particular brand, to the salesperson who understood their needs the best. This is possible only when the salesperson comprehends what the product does and how it does what it does so that he can then demonstrate how it really addresses the customer’s needs.

They focus on Problem Solving

It is important for the salesperson to understand that people buy products or services to solve their problems with ease. Thus, rather than spending time and effort in pushing to sell the product, the top salesperson always assures the buyer that the product or service will solve their problem. When a customer is looking to buy a new laptop, instead of pitching the most selling brand or the one which brings in higher revenues, the highly effective salesperson will try to understand the customer’s need first and only then suggest the laptop that the customer must buy. Highly effective sales people will address the question, “How can I help?” rather than “What can I sell?”

They Listen Carefully and Ask Tough Questions

A common saying for a salesperson is that “A good salesperson knows he has two ears and one mouth”.

It is, of course, obvious that a salesperson must know how to present his product or service to his customer, but an efficient salesperson will also always know when to stop talking and be a listener. The top salesperson makes this a habit by getting the needed training and by practicing it often.

While listening is crucial, it is also very important to ask plenty of quality questions to understand your customer better and to build a relationship based on trust by asking these questions. Highly efficient salespeople are well experienced in the way that they must put up their product or service, but the important goal here is to know their customer’s concerns and hesitations by asking some tough questions like “What is your opinion about our product?”, “How comfortable are you with our terms?”, “How do you feel about the price”?. The way to close a deal is by getting answers to these questions by making the customers think about these hard questions.

They sell Value and not Price

While there is always unrelenting pressure to drive the revenue and close the deal, the top salespeople know it very well that no customer buys a price. Salespeople are always tempted to give a discount in order to win the business, even if that means giving up on margins. However, the most successful salespeople understand that their companies depend on margins as well brand reputation to maintain viability in the market and hence would rarely bid on the price.

Although you might have been told by many customers that price was their only issue, it is not really true. While a lower price will always help you close a sale but that is not the reason why someone makes the buying decision. If the product has no value to the customer then even if you give a heavy discount, it might not really win the game because all the sales pros know that every buyer will be ready to pay a premium amount for the right solution for their problems.

They are in the Habit of Building Relations

A typical sales process would involve, identifying the decision maker and then executing everything in your power to present your offer. It is definitely difficult to close a deal without the support of the decision maker, but in many organizations, the decision maker would be connected and supported by a huge network of influential people and many others. Highly efficient sales professionals understand correctly the need to build relationships with this supporting network of people who help them to gain insights into the organization and create credibility for their offer once they are all set to present to the decision maker.

And again, sales people can never have enough leads, so the top sales professionals would never end a conversation without asking for potentials leads or getting an introduction to someone new. This, of course, forms the basics of networking in sales, there are many salespeople who have inhibitions to ask for an introduction.

So whether you are a salesperson or are planning to enter this field, inculcate these habits in yourself.

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Abhishek Shah

Nomad | Early Stage Investor | Wannabe Anthropologist | Technology Evangelist | Curious, Inquisitive & Experimental Entrepreneur