Imagine you walk into a store and are interested in buying a gift for your spouse. A salesperson quickly approaches and you quickly, and mindlessly, respond, “I’m just looking,” and wave him off. Perhaps you want some more information, you might have a question or two, or maybe you don’t even know what you want -- you just know that you don’t want to be pressured. Millions of people in retail showrooms around the nation today are telling salespeople “I’m just looking” as a defense response mechanism, an automatic response we make because of previous bad experiences with salespeople.

There is a difference between a customer giving an objection and a defense response. You can’t be successful in sales without learning the difference and mastering objections. Salespeople believe falsely that “The price is too high”, “I’m not buying today”, or, “I need to talk to my wife,” are objections, but they are not. You need to know how to handle them if you are ever going to sell anything.

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The untrained will leave the customer alone, likely not selling them anything. You need to understand that, “I’m just looking,” is a good sign -- they are looking! Here are some ways to handle the customer who is “just looking.”

1. “My best customers do the same thing. My name’s Grant, and yours?”

2. “Great, my job is to find you the right product that fits your needs and wants at a cost you can agree with, even if you’re just looking.”

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3. “Excellent, no problem. Would you be looking for something bigger or smaller than what you have now?”

4. “Excellent, we have a great selection of products to choose from, what are you most interested in looking at?”

5. “Let me know what you’re looking for and I’ll point you in the right direction so you don’t waste any of your time.”

6. “Let me know what you’re looking for and I’ll put together some information together for you.”

7. “That’s why we display our products, so you can see what we have—where would you like to start looking?”

8. “You can kill as much time here as you’d like, so take as much time as you need.”

9. “When you are more serious, in the future, do you think you’ll be going for a bigger one or a smaller one?”

10. “My job is to give you all the time and information necessary so when you do get around to making a decision you’ll consider us.”

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The point is that you need an arsenal of responses locked and loaded for the customer that is “just looking”. If you get customers saying the same thing over and over again, you must figure out responses to help you move forward with the sale. Your income depends on your ability to make sales, and making sales is dependent on your ability to handle any defense response mechanisms that your customer says.

Do you know the difference between objections and complaints? This week I’m doing a live webcast on Mastering Objections. Time is running out.