Why asking one question can make all the difference to your sales
We know what you’re thinking – you’ve read a few too many articles like this one before, articles that claim you are one or two magical steps away from unlocking a new world of sales for your business. Well, whether it’s “magic” or not, we do believe that asking this one question can make a significant difference to your success… and that question is, “What nearly stopped you buying from us?”
It’s a question that can be modified to suit various requirements – you may switch the ending to “from using us” or “from signing up”, for example. However, the basic principle is much the same, whether you include it in an email to your customer, on a ‘thank you’ page of your website or even in a face-to-face or telephone conversation. But why is it such an effective question?
It’s a question for your customers, not your non-customers
It might seem counterintuitive to ask such a question of those who actually purchased from you. After all, isn’t it your prospective customers who failed to follow through, such as those who visited your website or signed up for a newsletter but didn’t go on to make the big purchase, that you really need to quiz?
The problem with that approach is that many of those non-customers will throw up mixed, ‘red herring’ answers about why they didn’t purchase from you. They may complain about price, for example, despite only being very casually interested in your product or service in the first place.
In short, these people aren’t necessarily qualified prospects – but those who have gone as far as buying from you definitely are, and those are the people whose numbers you want to boost.
Your customers are the ones who know your entire sales funnel
You already know that your buyers were sufficiently interested in your company to complete the sales process, so they are familiar with every step and as a result, can provide informed and insightful advice on how it can be improved. They aren’t the people who were deterred after a few seconds, and who thereby lack an accurate appreciation of every aspect of your sales funnel.
After all, the simple fact that your customer actually became your customer doesn’t mean that they won’t remember the aspects of their experience that almost prevented them from doing so. If a given customer of yours encountered certain barriers but persisted with their purchase nonetheless, there will almost certainly be other people who gave up but never felt the need to tell you why. Remove those barriers, therefore, and you can expect heightened sales.
It’s a simple question, but one with obvious benefits, so make sure that you ask it if you want to gain quick and useful feedback that could help to significantly bolster your sales numbers.