Our sales training clients in Edmonton, Calgary, Vancouver and Toronto believe that making more sales rests on the ability of their Salespeople to ask great questions. In last week’s PROSALESGUY BLOG, we shared the first three levels of questioning – Discovery, Pain/Reward and Paraphrase Questions. Let’s educate you on the last three – Significance, Realization and Action Questions.
In the first three levels of questioning, communication and understanding was key. When a buyer is convinced of a Salesperson’s sincerity and authenticity to see their world from their eyes, trust is the natural outcome. Reacquaint yourself with Part One of the Six Levels of Questioning here .
Level #4: Significance Questions
What are they? Questions that cause both the Salesperson and decision maker to discuss the significance of removing the pain or considering the reward in the way they do something. While the significance may at times be obvious, mentioning it helps both parties agree that there is worth in the current discussion. “I can appreciate the significance of this…Help me understand the significance of this” are good examples.
What’s their trust level? Higher levels of trust, as the answers to these questions are usually emotionally based for the decision maker.
What do they achieve? The relationship develops further as the Salesperson continues to make the decision the center of all focus with still no solution or product selling.
Level #5: Realization Questions
What are they? The Salesperson is now asking questions to cause the decision maker to understand the true benefit of removing pain or adding reward. “What would happen if…What would you be able to do if…How would that benefit you?”
What’s their trust level? High levels of trust, as the Salesperson is being allowed to shift the mindset of the buyer to think outside the box.
What do they achieve? The buyer is now starting to realize the implication of making a positive decision for change to occur. “Remove my pain or give me my reward and you will make my world a better place.”
Level #6: Action Questions
What are they? Questions where the Salesperson is attempting to cause the buyer to establish a sense of urgency to take action. Here are some examples – “What would hold you back from making that decision? What would have to happen to have a decision made sooner rather than later? What could possibly happen if no decision is made?”
What’s their trust level? Extremely high levels of trust need to be attained for the Salesperson to have the right to ask these questions. Doing so without it, will probably get you thrown out.
What do they achieve? One of two things – You will have a qualified decision maker who has a sense of commitment to saying yes to you or someone who backtracks quickly and makes it apparent that they need more time or information before they get there. If that’s the case, ask the question – “What can I do to make these decision easier for you?”
When should a Salesperson shift into solution and product selling?
In most cases between Level #5 and #6. At that point, you have the buyer’s needs, motivators and a clear picture of their realization of considering change. If you can tie those points to your solution and product and have the buyer agree that there’s a great match, Level #6 Questions should be much easier to ask. At that point, it should be clear to you that the decision maker is either ready to buy or is not at the point of seriously considering working with you. That might improve your closing ratio with faster decisions. It also might give you an indication of who is better for follow up at a later date. All of this should add up to developing a better sense of sales intuition and placing less importance on low probability clients.
What do you think? What are your personal experiences with the Six Levels of Questioning? I’m always interested in your opinion. If you liked this post, share it on your favorite social media platform.
Many Salespeople have reached out to us for individual sales training online. The Sales Skills Incubator will launch this summer. If you’d like to know more about it, please send us a quick email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dave Warawa – PROSALESGUY
Author of SHUT UP! Stop Talking and Start Making Money available on Amazon in paperback and kindle