Closing Sales Over the Phone: Top Tips, Strategies, and Techniques for Bottom-Line Growth

Closing Sales Over the Phone: Top Tips, Strategies, and Techniques for Bottom-Line Growth

May 30, 2023 | Convoso

Between “Spam Likely” labels and changing consumer preferences, many teams may be struggling just to get more customers on the phone these days. Once they do, making the right moves to close a sale might feel like walking a tightrope. One wrong move and…there goes a costly lead.

It doesn’t have to be this way, though. With the right strategies for closing sales over the phone, sales teams and lead generators can bolster their bottom lines. Explore our guide below and find:

  • Tips for closing more sales over the phone
  • 3 effective sales closing techniques
  • The tools you need for even more effective phone sales

Tips for Closing More Sales Over the Phone

Phone sales are never as simple as a question and an answer. To improve your output, it needs to be seen for what it is: a complete process. Use these tips to improve that process from end to end. 

Respond quickly

Closing more phone sales and qualifying more leads starts well before your conversations with prospects do. To boost your sales and lead gen performance, you first need the right outbound calling strategy to make contact with more leads.

Perhaps the most critical part of any outreach strategy is speed to lead. If you’re not able to respond quickly enough—while your products or services are still top-of-mind and prospects are ready to move forward—then you’re going to struggle to drive more conversions.

Related Content

Learn more about the importance of speed to lead for your sales success.

Fine-tune your pitch

Once you have a prospect on the phone, you have a small window of opportunity. You need an opening pitch that makes the most of it.

When it comes to effective sales pitches though, you get out of them what you put in. That is, hooks and pitches should reflect thorough research and a complete understanding of your prospects’ motivations, needs, and challenges. 

Your pitch needs to be concise, too, of course. But in some ways, the pitch is really all about anticipation. Because, according to sales consultant Jason Cutter, customer objections (and rejections, for that matter) are mostly driven by fear—fear of change, of the unknown. 

You’ll have easy sales, sure: customers that don’t need much help getting to the finish line. But what your tougher potential customers need is your help overcoming fear.

So, take that perspective to heart and fine-tune your phone sales pitch to be more effective. Dig into what your customers want, but be sure to consider what fears might stand in the way of getting it.

Related Content

Hear more from expert Jason Cutter on how to build and improve your sales process.

Personalize the experience

While an analysis of a more general target audience will help you tailor your pitch, individual customers crave personalization once you get them on the phone. A whopping 76% of consumers are more likely to purchase from brands that offer personalized experiences.

Don’t lose out on these sales by using a cookie-cutter approach. 

Ultimately, it shouldn’t be hard to personalize your approach and convert more leads over the phone. In our digital world, virtually every touchpoint generates data. All this information can help you form a sharper image of who each customer is. Make sure that your sales scripts incorporate as many of these bits of data as possible, or at least make them readily accessible to sales reps. Because everything from lead source to location to demographic info can help you better connect with customers as individuals—and that means more sales. 

Listen actively

You can develop extensive call scripts that consider virtually every possible scenario an agent might face over the phone. But none of that is a substitute for one of the most important soft skills in sales: active listening.

The concept of active listening is simple enough: it’s just the conscious effort to focus on and understand what someone else is saying. Executing it, however, is another story. And that’s why it’s a genuine skill—one that requires development.

Incorporate active listening practice into your call center’s sales training. During role-playing exercises, encourage agents to interrogate what’s behind a customer’s response. By engaging with their counterpart empathetically, agents will be able to respond more effectively and keep more conversations on the path to a sale—not just with better rebuttals but with more incisive questions.

Related Content

See the 5 keys to handling sales objections over the phone—and find effective rebuttals to the most common ones.

Assume you’ve already closed

During your outbound calls, you should practice active listening. But agents also need to go into calls with the right mindset. Confidence is crucial. And there may be no better way to approach a call with confidence than by assuming that you have already closed with a customer. In this light, a typical sales call with a lead who has opted in to be contacted is closer to being a formality. That is, you’re just following up, covering off on any final concerns, and closing the deal. 

What does this actually look like in practice? More on that below.

How to Close on the Phone: Phone Sales Closing Techniques

The tips above will help you craft an effective overall strategy that closes more sales. Now it’s time to look closer at some pieces of practical phone sales know-how. Try out these effective closing techniques to convert more customers over the phone:

  • The “Now or Never” Close: Include time-sensitive trigger words like “last chance,” “ending soon,” or “don’t delay” to inject urgency into a conversation. Oftentimes, this technique goes hand-in-hand with the reality of the short sales period—or an industry-specific window, like Medicare’s open enrollment.
  • The Assumptive Close: This is how you translate that “I’ve already closed” mindset into action. An assumptive close keeps the sales agent on the front foot by assuming that they’ve presented the right info required to close a policy. Lead prospects closer to the final dotted line with a question like “Should we start filling out the application?” or “Do you think Option A or Option B is sounding best for you? Whichever you choose, I can get the paperwork ready right now.”
  • The Soft Close: In some situations, a lead may not be ready to fully commit. That’s okay though; hopefully, you’ve already moved them further down the funnel, and that’s its own kind of success. Nevertheless, a technique like the soft close can help you judge just how much further they’ve moved, ascertain whether they’re open to learning more, and determine next steps. Try asking a question that might help them express an openness to a purchase, such as, “If I could reduce your monthly bill by [X amount] while still offering you the same coverage, would you be interested in learning more?”

Tools for Even More Effective Selling Over the Phone

In this guide to sales call closing techniques, we’ve covered tips and techniques to make your outbound calls more effective. But there’s one more key ingredient missing to drive more of those wonderful “one-call” closes: the right technology.

Make sure that your outbound dialing software fully integrates with your sales tech stack, and offers these crucial tools that will help you close more sales over the phone.

Dynamic Scripting

Make it easier to get agents up-and-running and easier to stay on message with real-time scripting software that automatically pops personalized sales scripts and responds based on customer and agent responses.

Automated QA Software

Supplement your scripting with the robust post-call analytics offered by automation-powered sales QA software. Enlist the help of AI to identify patterns that are leading to more sales, as well as locate opportunities for improvement to streamline your coaching and feedback.

Call Whisper

Though the tools above can help reps adopt the best approach, sometimes more experienced colleagues and managers can improve results by playing a more direct role. Call Whisper capabilities enable real-time, one-on-one coaching with the click of a button. Use it to teach an agent how to close a sale on the phone while they’re on the phone—it’s a sales lesson that they won’t soon forget!

Predictive Dialer

More calls and more contacts mean more opportunities for sales. No outbound lead generation or sales team’s technology arsenal is complete without a predictive dialer that can power more efficient calling to maximize talk time and minimize lead time.

Learn more about how the Convoso dialer’s DX5 engine powers unmatched speed to lead—and see for yourself how switching to Convoso can push your contact rates and conversions to new heights. Sign up for a free demo today.

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