How many of the deals in your sales pipeline end up being “no decisions”?
24% of all the deals in an average salesperson pipeline end up in the no-deal-limbo.
The no-deal-limbo is the weird space between a buyer saying “yes” and a buyer saying “no”.
They’re the deals that when you’re sales manager asks you about them you go * weird, confused face*…
“No decisions” can happen for lots of reasons.
Some buyers move jobs midway through a deal happening. Some buyers are only looking for information from you so they can negotiate a deal elsewhere. Sometimes a product just isn’t a good fit for a particular prospect.
Whatever the cause of a “no decision” happening, they cost you dearly.
Think about it like this, if you could reduce the number of “no decisions” down from 25% to zero, you’d have 4 months additional of selling time per year!
How much easier would it be to crush your sales quota with 4 months of extra time to close deals?
It would be a piece of cake, right?
So in this post I’m going to give you 5 ways that you can catch a “no decision” before it happens, so you can spend more time with serious buyers.
#1 DO THEY SHOW UP?
The first way to tell if your buyer is serious or if they’re going to end up being a “no decision” in your CRM, is by how reliably they show up to meetings.
Everyone has the occasional scheduling issue and so you shouldn’t count out buyers who reschedule with you every now and again.
But if a prospect repeatedly cancels or even worse, doesn’t show up for meetings or cancels them, then clearly, they’re not serious about buying from you.
Don’t waste time constantly begging to reschedule with these people, cut your losses and go after a more qualified buyer.
#2 THERE’S NO “WHY”
One the best questions you can ask during your prospecting is –
“Why do you want to buy now?”
This should ALWAYS be asked if you’re dealing with an inbound sales lead but it works great with outbound prospecting too.
If the buyer can’t give you a solid reason “why now” is a good time for them to be going through the sales process, then they’re likely to end up a “no decision” later on.
#3 “MY BOSS ASKED ME…”
If a buyer jumps on a phone call and they say “my boss asked me to research…” then you know you’re dealing with the wrong person.
People tasked to “research” are not generally buyers. They don’t hold any budget or authority and so do not take their requests seriously.
Get up the food chain and start engaging with the people who really do have the power to purchase.
Of course be polite with the researcher and ask them for introductions to the real decision maker.
#4 DO THEY DO THEIR HOMEWORK
The buying process of a serious prospect is not frictionless.
Imagine being really into cars and you’re super excited to buy a Nissan GTR.
You’re going to be reading the specifications. You’re going to be watching loads of Youtube car reviews. You’re going to be more than happy to head to a dealership to test drive the beast.
So if you’re buyers are not willing to start a free trial or watch a nurture video you’ve sent them, then be concerned that they’re going to become a “no decision” soon.
When I’m selling our Salesman.org team memberships to sales leaders, if I’m not sure if a buyer is serious I’ll often give them some homework and see if they complete it.
I’ll ask the buyer to complete a form that has 9 questions on. The questions are designed to drill down into the real issues the sales leader is facing with their sales team. It adds value to their buying experience.
Now, if the buyer doesn’t complete the form. I know they’re not really that interested and so I spend less time consulting with them.
On the other hand if they complete it immediately, I know they can see the value that our Salesman.org platform can offer their team and so I get to work serving them and getting the deal done.
#5 NO INTRODUCTIONS
The final trigger that should alert you that a buyer is likely to become a “no decision” is if the buyer doesn’t involve the other stakeholders within the account in your sales process.
It’s very rare with any decent size B2B sale that you’ll only have to speak to one person within an account.
So the final and most damning indication that your buyer isn’t serious is if they won’t allow you to speak to their colleagues.
I’ve come across rare exceptions to this rule when you’re dealing with a procurement team that only want you to engage with them.
But other than that, if your buyer refuses to make introductions to the rest of their team, they probably aren’t serious.