We’ve all been there… You have a great phone call, amazing meeting, go over your pitch, and then email off the proposal as your prospect says, “I’ll get right back to you.” And then… it’s radio silence. You just lost the deal.
Sound familiar? Of course it does. It’s all too familiar in the web space. And it is not the prospect’s fault—it’s ours.
We’ve all done it. I am just as guilty as you are. But, if you want to start closing deals, you’re going to have to do what I did and switch up how you deliver proposals.
Rule #1 – Never Email Your Proposal to a Prospect
Okay, I know this sounds weird but hear me out. You need to be able to sit down with your prospect and go over the project scope and proposal so that you can both be clear that it’s structured properly. This is a critical step!
Meeting with your prospect gives you time to build trust and create a bond with them. People hate being sold, but they love to buy. Negotiating isn’t about winning, it’s about doing what’s best for all involved, and it should always lead to a win/win.
You need to see their reaction to the price. You need to be able to ask them if the pricing is going to work and if the timelines are okay. Check all the critical items with your prospect and get verbal agreements as you move through the proposal.
To avoid losing the deal, set up an in-person meeting every time. If in-person is impossible, or if you’re in different locations, simply use Skype, Google Hangout, or any one of the thousand online meeting tools at our disposal. If you make every effort to get connected via in-person or video call your closing rates will go up. I promise!
Rule #2 – Always Ask for the Sale
As web professionals, we spend days putting together fancy proposals for clients and prospects. After all that work and all the time you spent researching the solution(s) for them and answering their questions, you have earned the right to ask for their business. So ask them to buy.
It’s amazing how many freelancers and web pros I talk to who simply do not ask for the sale. Waiting on an email that will never come or sitting by the phone that will never ring is no way to grow your business. You have to make it happen.
Nothing happens until a sale is made. Sales is the driver of your business.
Don’t be pushy, here are some super professional ways to say, “Buy My Stuff!”
- “Are you ready to move forward now?”
- “How would you like to begin?”
- “Did we take care of all your concerns?” (If yes) “Great, let’s get started.”
“When would you like to schedule the kickoff meeting?”
As a freelancer and/or web pro, first and foremost you must never forget that you are a salesperson. If you don’t make the sale, nothing will happen. So start asking for the sale and stop emailing proposals so that you can start closing the deals.