Talking Less in Order to Close More SalesHave you ever heard someone say something like, “Sandy is a natural salesperson; she just knows how to talk all the time”? Well, this idea is outdated; in fact, highly effective salespeople talk very little compared to ineffective salespeople.

The reality is that most people talk way too much in selling situations, draining lots of time talking about all the features and benefits of their product or service. Instead, they should be spending more time listening to their prospects to understand what is most important to them.

3 Tips to Talking Less in Order to Close More Sales

#1. Use the 80/20 rule. No, not the 80/20 rule that you’ve probably heard about a million times, but the sales 80/20 rule: Spend 80% of your time listening to your prospects and only 20% of your time actually talking. This may sound extreme, but it is entirely necessary in order to effectively understand what your prospects want, what they need and what they are looking to accomplish.

You will sell far more effectively by doing most of the listening and only a little bit of the talking.

#2. Engage the prospect. It is your job as a salesperson to get your prospects talking about their situation. You need to understand what their challenges are, what accomplishments they’re after and what objectives they want to achieve.

By asking really effective questions and keeping a prospect fully engaged around his or her situation, you’ll ultimately be able to craft a solution that will close a sale many more times consistently compared to what will happen if you spend most of the time talking about features and benefits.

#3. Ask questions about outcomes. We’ve all been taught to ask questions, but you don’t want to be asking questions which I call product questions, such as, “Do you want my product in blue or green?”

However, an outcome question might be: “What are you looking to achieve?” or, “What are you looking to accomplish?” and, “What are some of the biggest challenges that you are facing in your business today?”

By asking questions about outcomes and what the prospect would ultimately like to achieve, you can then cater your presentation to solving the precise challenges that the prospect is seeking to tackle.

By applying these simple three tips for how to talk less to your prospects and get them to do most of the talking so that you can do most of the listening, you will be able to close many more sales. Which of these tips did you find most useful? Please share below in the comments.

Get 25 tips to crush your sales goal. Written by Marc Wayshak, sales strategist & author of the book, "Game Plan Selling."