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Why Can't My Sales Team Close More Leads?

Failure is a dirty word in many sales departments. Nobody wants to be the guy or gal who repeatedly can’t close new leads or deals. As frustrating as it is, it’s a natural part of the sales cycle. But when it becomes a recurring problem, many sales managers are left wondering what’s causing the issue. Many times, they will only focus on the symptoms, not the actual problem itself. The failure to close a lead or deal is often just the end result of the potential customer not having enough information to make an informed decision. We want to share a few reasons why your sales reps are underperforming and how they—and you—can take corrective action to turn things around.

Improve Your Leads

Before you lay the blame on your sales reps, you should first look at their leads. Are you providing them qualified leads or merely a list of cold calls? If you don’t have a source of promising leads, it will benefit both you and your reps to consider using lead generation or list acquisition services. If you’re in the B2B segment, you can also run software on your company website that will provide you with the contact information of your visitors. Such SaaS services as LeadFeeder are a powerful and useful tool if you have enough traffic coming into your website.

Poor Closing Skills

While it may be considered “sales 101,” how well your reps attempt to close a deal can significantly impact their success rate. Hard closes rarely, if ever, work in this day and age. They’re often seen as quasi-passive aggressive and can immediately cause the prospect to lose interest. A hard close can only elicit a “yes” or a “no,” and that often puts the customer in an awkward position. This especially holds true if they don’t have enough information to say “yes.” A much better soft-close technique is to have your reps say something along the lines of “If you buy “X” amount of dollars of product, I can knock off an additional 10% including shipping.”


Great sales reps, by their very definition, are highly competitive. You can encourage friendly competition amongst your entire sales department and reward high performers through gamification software. Ambition and Hoopla are two of many Software-as-a-Service platforms that are in use by many high-performing sales teams. Sales managers will often use a 55” HDTV mounted in a highly visible place in the sales office. It serves as a motivating psychological factor for all who enter into the department as reps will get a constant reminder of their numbers and how they compare to their coworkers.

Lack of Trust

The biggest reason why people don’t buy something is a lack of trust. If your customers view your reps as someone who’s just out to make a sale, there is no trust factor whatsoever. No matter how hard your sales reps try, they’re only seen as an annoyance by those they’re trying to pitch. Take a good hard look at your management techniques. Are you perhaps pushing your reps a bit too hard? Are they making enough money to view this as a long-term job—or does their income require making sales regardless? If you’re coming down too hard on your reps, there’s a good chance they’re coming down too hard on their prospects. To get to the bottom of this, perform a post-mortem on three recent deals that fell through. Did your reps present themselves as strategic partners—or proverbial traveling salesmen?

Remove Risk

Many buyers are risk-averse, especially in the B2B sector. There’s a good chance that they’ve been burned before by an over-zealous sales rep who promised the moon but was only able to deliver a small pebble. Even after the buyer has performed their due diligence, they often don’t have a good enough reason to try out your company. Your reps can get around this by offering to remove any and all risks to prove your worth. A great sales rep will understand the various risk factors and offer to work with the prospect to alleviate any of their concerns. The mere fact that the sales rep is demonstrating their knowledge of the risk factors in your industry is often enough for a purchasing agent to give them a shot.

Marketing Help in Alexandria and Arlington

At AlphaGraphics of Alexandria and Arlington, we’re not only a sign shop but marketing experts as well. We can help your company generate relevant and valuable leads and lists that you can provide to your sales reps for better chances of success. We’ve helped countless local Alexandria and Arlington businesses market their products and services. If you’d like to speak to a marketing expert about your business, give us a call at (703) 549-2432 or contact us on our website.

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