How to Sell on the Phone?

Many people wonder how to sell on the phone, because this type of business is quite profitable and affordable for everyone!


Nowadays, when our country suffers from economical crisis, the issues of maintaining business and finding a new job have become crucial.

Entrepreneurs use different tips and tricks in order to attract new clients. They come up with all possible methods – selling over the phone or the Internet and product placement.

Nowadays many people wonder how to sell on the phone, because this method helps businessmen to receive nice profit and allows average people to make enough money. Obviously, selling on the telephone is not easy, thus I’d like to explain the main methods how to sell on the telephone in this article.

However, not everybody can acquire proper skills, and if you try to do everything haphazardly, you won’t receive anything but dirty language from your clients and failed unprofitable deals.

The business of selling over the telephone has its own secrets. I have found a person who is eager to share them with you. His name is Victor, and he has already shared his professional skills and tips with me for another article about selling over the telephone. He’s an expert in this business and he has been working in this sphere for a very long time.

Selling over the phone: the difficulties of this business

Victor says (and I totally agree with him) that every single person can sell on the phone despite the age and social status. Obviously, if you want to succeed in this business, you should learn a few tips and tricks, and constantly improve your skills afterwards; otherwise you won’t be able to make money by selling stuff over the telephone.

People who are very shy or have problems with communication, as well as silly and inadequate people cannot sell over the phone due to the lack of sales skills and tricks.

Selling over the phone has its own peculiarities and thus differs from other types of sales business.

If you want to succeed in this business, you should prepare for such difficulties:

  1. You do not see your customers, thus you cannot follow their reaction to your words in order to define whether you’ve chosen a proper strategy.
  2. You do not keep an eye contact with your customer, which usually helps to talk the person into buying goods.
  3. You will have difficulties with keeping your client’s interest.
    I mean that if a person comes to a store, he/she is more likely to listen to the consultant’s speech till the end, while talking on the phone gives a person an opportunity to hang up on you.
  4. If you start selling over the telephone, you won’t be able to talk to the heads of the company.
    First you’ll have to use all your skills and tricks in your conversation with a secretary. However, one of the responsibilities of the secretary is to get rid of such sellers and suppliants.
  5. Many people don’t want to buy goods over the telephone, considering it to be an easy way for humbugs to hunt for their money.

How to sell on the phone: delusions of the amateurs

“Most people think “selling” is the same as “talking”, but the most effective salespeople know that “listening” is the most important part of this job”.
Roy Bartell.

Selling over the telephone has always attracted young creative people, because they consider this business to be very easy.

However, when they decide to sell on the telephone, they figure out that this way of making profit is quite difficult, and all their excessive self-confidence melts like a snow under spring sun.

3 mains delusions of the amateurs who start selling over the phone

  1. I’m a highly communicative person, so I won’t have any difficulties with attracting new customers.
    If you think alike, you are completely wrong! Business people won’t listen to your chit-chat, they want to hear a brief and clearly formulated offer. Thus, in order to succeed in selling over the telephone, you have to use certain telephone sales tips and know all necessary tricks.
  2. I’m very smart, thus I’ll easily impress my client.
    Your customer won’t care that you’ve read Schopenhauer in the original, watch only independent films and can easily multiply big numbers.
    A customer will be interested only in the goods which you are offering to him/her.
    Besides, not a single client can stand when a seller tries to assert oneself at the expense of a customer.
  3. Selling over the telephone is much easier than in real life, thus I’ll manage it without any problems.
    I can assure you: you are very, very wrong if you think so!
    Actually, if you decide to sell on the telephone, you have to be prepared that it’s more difficult than to sell something in the store or at the market, trust me! If you don’t believe me, you can start working for a company that sells goods over the phone, and I’m 90% sure that your first attempts will fail. The hiring managers will recommend you to learn how to sell on the telephone in order to improve your sales skills and acquire some useful tricks.

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Sales skills list

We have already discussed what traits of character a successful salesperson should not possess. Now let’s review what skills, tricks and tips are necessary for a sales manager in order to talk his/her client into buying goods.

Here is the list of the most important sales skills:

  1. Use proper language.
    Mixed dialect, slang, strange accent and other betacisms are not favored by the customers. Thus, if you suffer from speech defects, you should either cure them or look for another job.
  2. Be patient.
    This is a very important skill not only for people who sell on the telephone, but for all sales managers, because some clients love to ask sellers annoying questions or make improper remarks.
  3. Know how to establish contact with every customer.
    There are different kinds of people: some of them are boring or inadequate, while others like to chit-chat for hours or behave strangely.
  4. Know everything about goods which you are offering.
    Don’t expect your customer to buy everything what you offer to him/her right away. It’s not going to happen, for sure! You’ll have to use all possible sales tricks and skills in order to make a client buy your goods.
    Usually customers ask sales managers tons of questions about their goods, and if a customer concludes that you are not competent in sales business, you will never be able to sell anything.
  5. Know theoretical principles of selling over the telephone.
    Obviously, you cannot spend 15 years working as a violinist at the philharmonic, and then start selling on the telephone at once.
    First of all, even if you want to switch to another occupation, you have to be both theoretically and practically prepared.

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Telephone sales tips

How to sell on the phone: don’t accept the refusal!

Every single sales manager experiences refusals at least once in his/her career, and it’s quite normal even for professional sellers with good skills and sales tricks. As for the amateurs, they will surely encounter with some difficulties, but it doesn’t mean that they should quit working in this sphere.

Usually human brain reacts very negatively to such offers, thinking that a sales person tries to sell something useless.

Even if your client says “No”, you should not:

  1. Apologize for disturbing him/her and hang up.
  2. Try to engage your client-to-be in a further conversation, e.g.: “Perhaps, you would like to hear our offer anyway? It won’t take much time”.
  3. Ask your interlocutor why your goods do not seem interesting to him/her.
    When you hear an answer, act according to the prescribed instruction.
    For example, if your customer says that he/she doesn’t want to buy anything from you because he/she has another supplier of the same goods, explain why your offer is better. However, keep in mind that you must not discredit your business rivals.

You may say good-bye and hang up only if you hear that your client becomes nervous or if he/she behaves inadequately, e.g. starts yelling at you or uses dirty language.

If it is not the case, you should continue your conversation.

Keep in mind that you will never learn how to sell on the phone if you don’t find the proper approach to people who always answer with refusal.

Phone sales tips

I asked Victor to give my readers several more useful sales tips and tricks from the professional in this sphere. Such tips will help you to succeed in selling over the phone.

  1. Smile while talking to your client.
    Obviously, he/she won’t be able to see your smile, but if you smile, you’ll make your voice sound cheerfully, and your interlocutor will hear it.
  2. Gather information about the company where you want to sell your goods.
    You must not make a phone call if you don’t have enough information about your future client.
  3. Prepare a text of your conversation and place it near the phone when you make a call. Also, you can think through the answers to possible questions from your interlocutor.
    Thus, you’ll protect yourself from unpredictable situations.
  4. Don’t interrupt your client even if you guess what his/her question is going to be.
    Listen to your customer very attentively, because it’s one of the main skills of a seller.
    However, if your client gets easily distracted and starts talking about today’s weather at some point, try to return to the topic of selling and buying.
  5. Love your job.
    If you think of every conversation with a customer as of penal servitude, your client will surely notice it and you can forget about selling anything to anybody.

And keep in mind that even if you have been selling goods over the telephone for several years already, don’t stop learning how to sell on the phone. Improve your sales skills from day to day, and you’ll become a successful sales manager!

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