When it comes to purchasing new technology, we know that companies have many options. To make matters more complicated, many CFOs are now turned off by traditional take-it-or-leave-it hardball sales techniques. When a company has options, it is critical to understand how to best relate to potential clients and offer them solutions that work for both of you. This is called “win-win” negotiation and can be extremely effective in today’s technology sales market. The following are five techniques you can do to negotiate a successful win-win deal.
- Listen to the Needs of a Potential Customer
Conventional sales techniques involve telling a potential customer about every detail of your product and why they want it. However, an approach more likely to reach a win-win agreement is to ask the customer questions about their needs and why they may be dissatisfied with their current technology vendor. Asking questions and listening closely to answers can help you make an offer that presents practical solutions for a customer, and it can greatly improve the buying process for a customer and make them feel like a valued part of the transaction.
- Don’t Just Make One Offer
Some salespeople are dead-set on making a single offer, and if the potential customer doesn’t accept it, the negotiations end and they simply move on to the next potential customer. Such a rigid approach can provide little information about why the deal didn’t work or how you could have tweaked your offer to make it more acceptable to the customer.
Consider making two or more offers with slightly different terms, but all of which still benefit your business. You can learn more about your customers by which terms they find favorable and which they do not. Presenting multiple options can also demonstrate that you are flexible and accommodating, and willing to find solutions that work for all parties involved.
- Wait to Make a Counter-Offer
When a customer rejects your offer and instead, makes a much lower proposal, you may be tempted to immediately make a counter-offer to meet somewhere in the middle. However, win-win negotiations are more than maximizing the value of the deal on your end. It is important to take the time to examine your customer’s needs and reasons for their proposal. Once you understand the underlying reasons for your customer’s objections to your initial offer, you can make a more educated counter-proposal that may work better for both of you.
- Consider Contingent Terms
Some business owners don’t want to commit to a purchase because they are uncertain about the future after the deal, including how certain technology will work for their company. You may be certain that your new software will improve the customer’s operational efficiency and cut costs, but the CFO may have their doubts as to its effectiveness. This disagreement doesn’t have to kill the sale – instead, you may be able to move forward with an agreement contingent on certain results or occurrences in the future.
- Leave the Option for Future Adjustments or Negotiations
An initial agreement may work for both parties, but you may believe you can gain even more value from the agreement down the road, while still keeping the customer satisfied. Consider requesting that you revisit the terms of the agreement at a later date, with each party having the right to reject any changes. Post-agreement negotiations can address the changing needs of your customer and can increase value for your business.
Negotiating a win-win transaction is not always simple, but it can greatly benefit you and build customer loyalty. For more information about technology sales assistance, contact Blue Street Capital today.