In B2B, a seller interacts with the customer multiple times before he/she strikes a deal. You will make first level, second level and many more pitches to the prospect in an effort to convince him/her to buy your product or service. But are there ways to guess whether your prospects are really going to buy from you?
Well, the answer is yes. It is obvious that nobody can predict the outcome of a business proposal to 100% accuracy. However, there are indications which tell you that the prospect is highly interested.
In this article, I will discuss 7 such indications that your prospect is going to buy from you. But, please note that these observations do not guarantee you a deal. It could always go either way. The idea here is to help you tailor your actions to better suit the requirements of your prospect by making these observations.
1. Being more inquisitive
Your prospect asking more questions on your products and services is a signal of his/her high interest levels. Questions could be raised during a presentation, business meeting or through emails and calls.
These questions could be in the form of request for information, asking how your product or service can tackle a particular issue, request for pricing details etc.
The nature of questions also matters. If they are way too generic, then probably your prospect is asking them for the sake of it. On the other hand, if they are being specific, it means they are gauging your capabilities in that area. So use your judgement to figure out your prospect’s intention.
2. Discussing future or long term plans
Most of your prospects will not be interested in discussing their company’s strategy and long term goals. But if they do, that indicates they like to consider you as a potential future business partner.
Also, if they get into more depth by asking how you would support them in their journey for the next few years, it means they are very likely to give you a deal, provided that you help them address their pain points.
Further, discussing business strategy implies that they want you to come in as a business partner than a mere service provider.
So use this as a tool to know whether the prospect is going to buy from you.
3. Being more open and casual
You might want to debate this point. But in most of the cases, customers being more open and casual indicates a good chemistry between you and them. In fact it depends a lot on their cultural inclination. Europeans are more formal in nature than US customers. So a European customer acting casual is a good sign.Click to enlighten your network with this piece of knowledgeClick To Tweet
But beware when you converse casually with your prospects. Make sure to not cross the boundary by getting into unnecessary discussions. Be careful to keep a safe distance with them. Your primary intention should be to get maximum insights about their business, and guess whether they are going to buy your products or services.
4. Facilitating further interaction with relevant stakeholders
In B2B sales, getting 15 minutes of your prospects’ time is very difficult. You are lucky if you get that much time to make your first level pitch. And after your first or second pitch, if you are getting an opportunity for a detailed discussion with relevant stakeholders in your prospect’s organization, then you have won the first stage.
Multiple sellers are approaching your prospect offering similar products and services. Getting a chance for further discussion eliminates some of the competition. And that indicates genuine interest from the prospect’s side.
5. Talking about referrals or recommendations
Many of you get new leads through referrals and recommendations from your customers. That improves your probability of winning the deal, as there is nothing better than your existing customers speaking for you.
And in your interactions with the prospect, if he/she is bringing up the discussion around one of your customers referring you to them, that shows you are among the favorites for the business deal. They might as well be ready to buy from you, even if you have a few minor flaws.
6. Appreciating you for your work or other aspects
Talking about referrals is one of the ways of appreciating your past work. But following are also ways which show your prospect’s appreciation for your company:
- Appreciating your innovation approach and investment in new areas
- Acknowledging the effective processes and policies you have in place
- Recognizing the strategy and mission of your organization
- Appreciating the ability and knowledge of your leaders and employees
You can guess that the prospect is going to buy from you, if they appreciate your work multiple times during your interactions.
7. Showing interest in products/services they don’t need today
This is a stronger indication of your prospects’ interest in buying from you today. Every business has both short term and long term requirements. Primary focus would be to fulfill the short term ones. And the discussion you are having today with them is most likely around the short term goals.
However, they could also show interest in your futuristic solutions, as they contribute to their innovation or transformation goals (which are more long term in nature). This may mean that you are a huge favorite for the current deal. And if you make it, they might step up to discuss future business opportunities.
This is an indication of their interest not just in today’s deal, but that they might buy from you in the future as well.
Those are my tips on how to know whether a prospect will become a customer. Have you already made these observations in your business interactions? Let me know in the comments section.