Identifying the buying signals can be challenging at times. You are dealing with humans who are unpredictable and whose behavior is often difficult to decipher. That can lead to missed opportunities or, worse yet, a customer walking away feeling unsatisfied. Thankfully, there are certain buying signals that most customers exhibit in one way or another.
Buying signals are either verbal or nonverbal indications that a customer is ready to purchase or, conversely, that they are not. Being able to recognize these signals is an essential skill for any salesperson. This blog post will ensure you can quickly and accurately read the situation and take the appropriate action.
Positive Buying Signals
First, let’s look at positive buying signals. These are the things you want to see in a customer during a sales interaction. If a customer is exhibiting these behaviors, it means they are likely ready to make a purchase.
These signals can happen at any time throughout the sales process. As such, you must be ready to personalize your cold calls. emails, and face-to-face interactions to ensure you don’t miss opportunities.
Signing Up For a Free Trial
One of the greatest lead generation strategies involves offering a free trial of your product or service. If a customer is willing to try it out, they are likely interested in seeing how it works and potentially making a purchase down the line.
A series of educational emails on using their free trial can go a long way in converting them into paying customers. It would be best to gather feedback during and after the trial to see what can be improved.
Viewing a Specific Product
Depending on the type of your business you should pay attention to what your customers are eyeing the most. If the customer has viewed a particular product more than once that is a clear sign that they are interested. In case you are running an online business, then hopefully, your website is well-equipped with analytics and CRM software. This will allow you to see which pages a customer visits the most and what products they are particularly interested in.
Even if they aren’t quite ready, you can use this as an opportunity to reach out and ask if they have any questions or need help deciding. This allows you to stay top-of-mind for the customer and could lead to future sales.
Engaging With Your Brand on Social Media
When a customer follows your brand on social media, it is a buying sign that indicates that they are interested in what you offer. Whether that be the value you provide through your posts or the products you sell, they want to stay informed.
If you notice a customer engaging with your content or pages, they might be trying to initiate contact with your brand. Respond promptly and inquire further about what they are looking for. It could lead to an additional sale or even a potential ambassador who recommends your brand to others.
Signing Up For The Newsletter
Similar to a social media follower, a newsletter sign-up tells you that the customer is interested in your industry, brand, or product. When someone signs up for a newsletter, it shows that they want to stay informed about what you are doing and might be interested in purchasing.
You can leverage this signal by using the newsletters as an opportunity to send special offers, discounts, or new products directly to their inbox. This will make them feel like they are part of the community and increase their likelihood of making a purchase.
Asking for a Price and Payment Methods
At this stage, potential customers are probably weighing their options and comparing prices. If a customer is inquiring about pricing or payment methods, it could be a good indication that they have already decided your product is the right fit for them and are ready to purchase.
To capitalize on this signal, you should be prepared with the necessary information to provide quick answers and move forward with the sale. If possible, try to offer a variety of payment methods so that customers can pick what works best for them.
Asking for Advice From Their Peers
Not everybody has the purchasing authority to make a decision on the spot. If a customer asks for advice from their peers, it might mean they are sharing their interest in your product and trying to build a case for it. For example, a lead might reach out to their colleagues or superiors for feedback on a certain product or service.
This is an opportunity for you to provide additional information and answer any questions that could influence the purchase decision. It also allows you to connect personally with the people involved in the purchase process and build relationships for future business opportunities.
Asking About Terms and Conditions
Our last buying sign is when a customer asks about terms and conditions. The reasons for this inquiry range from a lack of trust to proper due diligence. No matter what the case is, if a customer is asking about the terms and conditions of your product or service, they are probably seriously considering your offer.
Their questions might come in the form of money-back guarantees, return policies, warranties, or shipping prices. Make sure you are prepared with the answers they need, and don’t be afraid to negotiate if it means that a sale will happen. It also helps to have a clearly laid-out terms and conditions page on your website for customers to refer to.
Negative Buying Signals
Unfortunately, not all buying signs are positive. In some cases, customers might show signs that they are not interested in what you’re selling. Note that these negative buying signals don’t automatically mean that you’ve lost a sale, but you might want to lower that customer’s lead score and avoid spending too much time or resources following up.
Hesitating to Schedule Time With You
If a customer is dragging their feet when it comes to scheduling follow-up calls or meetings, it could be a non-verbal way of expressing their lack of interest without having to say it directly. They might also avoid the conversation altogether by sending generic emails without further explanation.
However, it’s also possible that you are dealing with an extremely busy professional, and they simply don’t have the time to meet with you. In that case, it helps to send concise emails and try your best to be accommodating. Outbound prospecting is about creating a sense of urgency, but you still want to make sure the customer is comfortable instead of overwhelmed.
Researching Other Solutions
Generally speaking, there is nothing wrong with customers researching other solutions. In fact, if they are actively looking for alternatives, it could mean they are open to making a purchase and just want to ensure they’re getting the best deal. The reality is that your solution might not be suitable for every customer.
The customer might tell you, ”I’m researching other options,” or they might just be silently visiting your competitors’ websites. That’s why it is crucial to have an understanding of the market. You want to be prepared with the right arguments to demonstrate why your product or service is a better fit than the competition for the customer’s needs.
Not Sharing Budget Information
Any respectable business has a clear picture of its financial health at all times. As such, you might think there would be no reason why a customer wouldn’t be transparent about their budget. Yet, some customers might not be completely honest regarding this money-related information.
If a customer is hesitant to share their budget numbers with you, there might be something else going on. It could mean that they don’t want to pay the full price of your product or service. Or it could be that they have other priorities and can’t afford what you’re selling right now. You can usually get a good idea of a company’s budget by researching its financial performance. Did they recently receive an influx of investments or demonstrate a significant drop in profits?
Although you don’t want to spend valuable time haggling with an uninterested customer, you should also be prepared to offer discounts or payment plans if possible.
Not Introducing You to the Decision-Maker
Finally, another buying sign of disinterest is refusing to move up the ladder. If the customer you are speaking to is not the decision-maker, they may choose to keep you away from them either consciously or unconsciously.
This scenario can be especially tricky because it means that the customer is still interested in your product or service. Still, they might feel personally threatened by introducing a new person into the mix. Maybe they are sure their boss won’t approve of the purchase, or perhaps they don’t want to share the spotlight.
Regardless of their reasons, it is important to stay professional and patient. Focus on finding a way to get in front of the decision-maker, even if it means a few extra steps. Offer your customer alternatives that make sense, and don’t be too pushy. If a customer senses you are desperate for the sale, they might become even more unwilling to introduce you to the decision-maker.
At the end of the day, salespeople must pay close attention to customer buying signals. Positive and negative signs can be challenging to detect, but they are the key indicators that allow you to decide whether to continue pursuing a sale or move on. In some cases, moving on from prospects exhibiting blatant negative signals might be a better idea.
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