Here are 7 secrets you can use right now to improve your negotiating skills

1.  Sell first, negotiate second.

Never go into a sales call expecting to negotiate, rather go in committed to sell and close the deal without making any concessions.  It’s during the selling phase when you have the best opportunity to learn the most about what it is the customer needs and wants.

2.  Never negotiate until you know at least 3 needs the customer has or 3 benefits the customer is looking for.

You can’t negotiate until you know what it is they want. Once you start negotiating with the customer, everything they say is going to be suspect since they too know you’re negotiating.

3.  Don’t start negotiating until you know the timeframe of when the other party intends to make a decision.

Time is a powerful negotiating tool.  If the other party has all the time in the world to make a decision, then they will use it against you.

4.  Let the other party put the first offer on the table.

No matter how tempting it is to get things going, don’t!  Let the other party state the price they’re willing to pay. This at least gives you a frame of reference to work with.

5.  Offer your ultimate package early.

One way to get the other person thinking differently is by letting them see your top of the line package and price.  Doing this early can move the customer’s mind and get them thinking of something larger and, more importantly, a higher price.

6.  When stating your price, don’t ask; tell them and do it with both a firm voice and eye contact, followed by silence.

After you share the price wait and let the other party respond.

7.  Be prepared to walk away.

Don’t think any deal needs to be closed right now.  Many times the most profitable deals you’ll ever make are the ones you don’t get…today.

There they are — 7 things you can start doing right now to improve your negotiating skills and ultimately the deals you negotiate.

Copyright 2012, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter.” Sales Motivation Blog.

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