12 closing techniques that your salespeople can use today to improve sales – Part 1

BY:  Rebecca Herson
September 2, 2021

When your salespeople make a sales call, the  most important step is closing the deal, or at least evolving the relationship to the next step. But it’s not that easy – closing a deal depends on several key factors, including budget, solution functionality, and what the competition has to offer.

In most cases, when a company searches for a product or service, they shop around, usually looking at two to three different solutions to solve their unique pain points. Fortunately, salespeople have various closing techniques at their fingertips to make closing a deal easier – but it’s important to know how, and when, to use them. We’ve put together seven different types of closing techniques to help ensure your salespeople close that deal!

Assumptive closing technique

With this technique, your sales rep already assumes that they’re going to close the deal, and projects confidence that the solution they are providing is the one that will work best for the potential client.

This boosts client confidence that the salesperson knows what they’re talking about, helping to move the sales process more easily to the next step.

For this technique to work best, the salesperson needs to be familiar with the client and the particular problems they face. This, in turn, allows the salesperson to make specific offerings that apply directly to the client’s business needs.

However, salespeople need to be careful when using this technique. Make sure they are not too confident, as this can come across as your salesperson thinking they know more about the client’s business than the client does! Also, if the client has too many sales objections from the start, the salesperson might want to avoid this technique or at least wait until they get a better handle on the customer’s problems and are closer to closing the deal.

Now-or-never closing technique

When using the now-or-never technique, the salesperson first tries to gauge the potential client’s desire to find a solution – so this technique works best when the client approaches the sales rep with the mindset that they want a solution immediately. Once the client projects this type of urgency, your salesperson should assure the client that this was the perfect time to contact them and then describe your company’s solutions.

It’s important for your salespeople to properly gauge the client’s urgency when using this technique. In addition, the now-or-never technique works best when your salespeople have some leeway on pricing in order to more effectively beat competitor prices.

This technique also works well with small requests for clients that are easy to implement. But the one time NOT to use this technique is when your salesperson determines that the product doesn’t fit the specific needs of the client.

Downsizing your solution technique

Downsizing a solution gives your salespeople the option of taking away features from a solution that a potential customer might not want. This allows them to offer lower, more competitive pricing, which the customer might be more likely to accept, plus, they won’t feel like they’re overpaying for a product or service.

This technique works great when there is a price objection on the client’s part, as your company is able to provide the customer exactly what they’re looking for, at a price point that is more in line with what they’re willing to pay.

It’s also best used when there is a clear desire and very focused customer requirement. Remember: The solution must be able to be scaled down in order to offer the client exactly what they want at a lower price.

Keep in mind that if your solution is all-inclusive and can’t be customized, then this technique is not a good fit.

Summary close technique

Usually, with a sales call, your salesperson talks to a prospective customer about what your product offers, especially in comparison with what the competition is offering. Then this is usually followed by some demonstration of what the product or service can do. So in many cases, this flood of information can be confusing to the client.

With the summary close technique, your salesperson gives a summary of what was talked about close to the end of the call. This is best in a simple, cross-tabular matrix format, allowing the client to more easily see what the product does and the benefits provided.

Your salespeople can do this by using one or two slides, allowing the client to easily understand what they’ll gain from the product or service. The client can then determine whether or not the solution fits what they’re looking for. This type of summary can be very impactful, especially if given toward the end of the call.

Salespeople should only summarize what is necessary and what corresponds to the particular client needs. This keeps your solutions front and center without bombarding the client with too much information, and can be very impactful, especially if given toward the end of the call.

Pet, animal store, or puppy dog closing technique

This technique is like when you fall in love with a puppy dog at the store and they offer you the chance to take him home for a few days. In the context of a sales process, this technique helps to build a connection by offering a smaller version, or trial, of the product or service – allowing the customer to first try a product out, and see if it fits. By offering a few simple features of the product, your salespeople can generate client desire to try out more advanced features of the solution.

This technique also helps build a stronger bond between the customer and the product. Plus, offering this type of trial for a limited time means that when the trial period is up, the client has, hopefully, developed a reliance on the solution, and wants to keep the puppy…er, product.

It’s also important to note that any trials used with this technique should be simple to set up and easy enough for the client to use on their own, or else the customer will want to give that puppy right back!

Columbo close technique

No, this technique doesn’t have anything to do with wearing a rumpled raincoat (if you’re too young to know what I’m talking about, here’s the backstory). But Columbo was also known for his curiosity, which gave him an edge in solving cases. In the world of sales, this technique uses a parting shot to try to drive interest in a product. By doing this, your salespeople can leave a potential customer with the highlight of the product to think about as the call ends.

Using this technique, the salesperson keeps the highlight of your product toward the end of a call / presentation for best effect, especially when they feel there might be some competition, or if a split decision is being made by the client. This highlight can be leveraged to close the deal, as the main goal of this technique is to create a “wow” effect about a promotion, feature, warranty, or anything else that might get the client’s attention.

Hard close/nothing-to-lose technique

This technique comes into play after your salesperson has made their pitch and explained everything to the potential customer, including budget and other considerations. At this point, your sales rep might feel like they have nothing to lose, making the customer an offer to try and get them onboard.

This could involve the customer putting in a small deposit and trying the solution to see if it meets their needs. The salesperson could also work on a plan with the client to get them to try out the product with a budget to come after that. The idea is for your salespeople to get their foot in the door in the hopes of getting the client interested in your company’s product, with the idea of working on a more robust buy-in at a later point.

This kind of approach tends to lay everything out in the open, as the customer might come straight out and tell you that the product your salesperson is trying to sell doesn’t quite fit their needs. At least in this case, both your salespeople and the customer can move on quickly so neither party wastes time on a product that the client doesn’t need or want.

These are just some of the many closing techniques available for your salespeople to leverage, and I guess it goes without saying that they can practice each of these techniques using Second Nature AI! Taking advantage of automated conversation simulations with Jenny, our AI sales coach, your salespeople can spend time honing a variety of closing techniques, increasing their chances of making a sale. See how it works

Read part two of our sales closing techniques blog post!

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About the author

Rebecca Herson

Rebecca is head of marketing at Second Nature.

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