Was it something I said?
How often do we find ourselves in a situation where the progress of sales opportunities we felt were likely to close come to an abrupt halt, at best they go very quiet or worse they disappear almost completely off of the radar leaving us wondering what happened, what did I do or say?
Whilst there isn’t one specific reason why deals stall there are a number of commonly encountered reasons why sales opportunities stall, below I have outlined a few reasons why your sales opportunities may have stalled and are not moving forward.
The common reasons why opportunities stall
There’s a lack of urgency from the prospect — You may be working with a prospect to solve a problem or make a decision regarding a product or service that isn’t a priority for them at the moment. The product or the solution you provide could have been put on the back burner because other issues or circumstances have taken priority and there is a lack of action from the client, every sales call should end with a commitment to take action. You cannot move the sale forward unless the buyer or decision-maker is as committed to taking action as you are.
You haven’t been working with the right decision-maker — Have you verified the contact you have been talking to is the right person to make a purchasing decision? If not, they may be avoiding communication. Learn how to identify the right decision-maker to move your deal forward by researching alternative contacts.
They are waiting for funding or other information from within their business — Some deals may stall because your contact is waiting for additional budget, approval, or a new product of their own to launch before they can commit to a sales decision.
You haven’t built enough trust with your contact yet — Building trust and rapport with your contact is crucial. If you haven’t built rapport with your prospect, they may feel less inclined to communicate where they’re at in the decision making process.
They don’t want to say "no" — Sometimes, your offering just isn’t the right fit and the prospect doesn’t want to break the news to you.
You’ve failed to connect the buying and selling process - Sometimes, sales people get ahead of the buying process. Make sure you understand where your customer is in the decision-making process and help them think through each stage. Are they still focusing on understanding the product or solution? Are they looking at other options? Or, are they comparing the best choice solutions with the status quo? It’s difficult to connect your product, service, or solution to specific business problems of your customer if you can’t gauge where they are and help them surmount obstacles.
The ROI or perceived value is unclear - This means your value proposition isn’t strong enough and it isn’t resonating with the prospect. Very few decision-makers will be willing to invest resources and budget in a product or a solution without a documentable ROI or a clear perceived value to themselves or the business. If the problem they are facing has too many “unknowns” the initiative goes to the back burner until someone can show the true value of the product or solution.