Sales objections are a common occurrence throughout a salesperson’s career. Here are some of the most common ones and how to deal with them.
RELATED: Overcoming Cold Calling Objections
39 Common Sales Objections and How to Overcome Them
What are Sales Objections? Sales objections are rebuttals from a potential client stating why they won’t buy your product or service.
Why Prepare for Objections in Sales
Sales reps often struggle with sales objection handling because they never really expect them. Knowing the common objections in sales and what they mean can take the shock out of it and help you deal with them.
1. The Gatekeeper
The gatekeeper (usually an intern, office manager, or executive assistant) is the first person you end up talking to when you make that first call. More often than not, they won’t really have much say on the final decision, so they just pass you to someone else on the basis they don’t have authority.
The objection enters when they don’t really direct you to someone who can make a difference or just reject you right then and there. The key here is to have them redirect you to a decision-maker.
Try to establish trust between you and this person. When you get them to buy into your vision, they can become your advocate within their organization.
2. Too Busy
If the person on the other end of the line says they’re too busy, be upfront that you won’t take much of their time. If they won’t budge, ask for a follow-up.
3. Not Interested
Are they immediately saying they’re not interested? Send them an email with information about your product or schedule a follow-up call.
4. The Hard No
Did they say no outright? How you respond depends on how far along the sales process you are:
- Early on: Make sure you’re selling the right amount of value.
- Middle of sales cycle: Try working around the objection and find the root cause.
- End of the sale: Find out why and use it as a learning experience.
5. Prospect Hates You
If it appears like they hate you, pass them to another sales rep who’s better suited for this type of prospect.
6. Asks How You Find Them
This especially applies if you’re cold calling someone. Tell the truth and respect their wishes if they don’t want you to contact them.
7. The Hang-Up
Call back after some time and play it up as the call being disconnected. If it happens again, connect to a person within the same organization.
8. Asks for a Discount
Shift the focus to the value your product creates rather than on price. Use this to sift through the prospects that won’t be a good fit.
9. No Money
A lead saying they have no money may be telling the truth – they probably can’t afford you at the moment. Track this prospect’s growth pattern and place some strategic follow-ups along the way.
10. No Budget
There’s no money right now, but there’s a chance the budget may return. Manage this objection in two ways:
- Ask when cash will return and make follow-ups then.
- Look for ways you can set aside some budget for your product/service.
11. Too Expensive
When your prospect says what you’re offering is too expensive, they usually have the budget but can’t see enough value to justify purchasing. In other cases, however, it can be a smokescreen for other concerns.
If you hear this objection, find out what’s really going on.
12. Budget/Money Elsewhere
In this case, your prospect doesn’t see what you offer as a priority. Counter this with case studies or examples of how others benefited from your solutions.
Bonus points if you can show that your solution helps them save money.
13. Cheaper Options
Show them why your solutions cost more and how they’re better than the competition. Talk about advanced features that can help them increase sales or employee productivity.
14. No Return on Investment (ROI)
The best way to counter the ROI objection is to present a case study of how similar businesses saw the ROI. You need to convince them that your product or service can help make or save them more money than what they spend.
15. Doesn’t Want to Be Tied to a Contract
See if you can offer a shorter term or an option to leave the contract after a certain number of months.
16. Bad Reputation
Let them know that you’ll pass the feedback on. Next, continue to offer information on how you can improve and add value to their company.
17. Can’t Work with Certain Tools
If your product isn’t compatible with certain tools they use, you’ll have a hard time convincing them to switch. Check if there are any workarounds or if it could replace things in their current setup.
18. Can’t Implement Right Now
A product or service that requires prospects to take employees away from their duties or hire another person can be a deal-breaker. Show them ways that your solution can benefit their employees.
19. Not Understanding Product or Service
Clarify what specifically your prospect doesn’t understand and go from there. Otherwise, ask yourself if you want to keep going.
Try rephrasing the product features in a way they’d understand and let them know they can get in touch with product support if they need any help.
20. Company is Too Small
Introduce your company to them, what you do, and how you can help.
21. Demand for New Features
This is a common tactic with enterprise customers who are used to getting software customized to their needs. When what they want isn’t aligned with your product vision, don’t hesitate to walk away.
22. Solution is a Fad
If you’re marketing a truly innovative product, you need to prove that it has lasting power. Share any positive feedback you got from other clients, or proof that it can help in improving metrics.
23. Doesn’t See How Product Will Help Them
A prospect who says this wants more information. Explain how your product can solve pressing issues they may be experiencing.
24. Problem Not Important
You can create a sense of urgency to the deal so they can take you more seriously:
- Limited edition offer
- Incoming price increase
- Special promotions like discounts and added services
25. Happy with Status Quo
Try prodding a bit more and you may uncover some hidden issues they may have. If they truly are happy with the status quo, you can just walk away.
26. Product-Need Mismatch
Apologize for any misunderstanding, ask them to explain what they really need, and listen to them.
Restate their concerns in your own words to make them feel validated, then proceed to explain how your solution can help their needs.
27. Product Isn’t a Priority
When your prospect says your product isn’t on their list, it could be due to one of the following reasons:
- They’re the wrong customer.
- Your sales pitch doesn’t match what they need.
- They’re hiding their real issues.
Uncover first what these reasons are, then tailor your approach based on what you know.
28. No Time to Talk
It depends on when the prospect tells you this:
- Early on: Tell them you only need a few minutes of their time.
- Later in the process: It means the price doesn’t match the value of what you’re selling.
29. Asks to Send an Email
Agree to send them information, but don’t leave it at that. Ask them some open-ended questions before you do.
30. Thinking About It
When someone tells you they’ll think about something, it either means:
- They’re not interested.
- They are but have some follow-up questions.
Ask your prospect which of these applies to them.
31. Says They’ll Buy Soon
Find out if your prospect has any deal breakers, then create a plan to address these. Then, ask them what it will take for them to be a paying customer.
If you encounter this, it’s best to let it go. Leave things on a high note so you can pick up later if the right opportunity strikes.
33. Part of a Buying Group
What is a buying group? This is a group of two or more organizations that come together so they can access the best deals and negotiation power.
This is one of the more challenging objections. First, know what their buying group’s requirements are. The best way to close this kind of objection is to become one of their authorized vendors.
34. Not Authorized to Sign Off
Ask them who the right person is and know their contact information.
35. The Decision Maker Consensus
The larger the company, the more decision makers you need to go through. Find out if you can be in the decision-making process.
36. Stuck with Contract
See if offering a discount is possible, or tell them the long-term benefit to the short-term hit.
37. The Industry Standard
This comparison is especially common for startups. The trick to this is to convince them to use both solutions.
38. The Bully
Don’t give in to them. Be strong and establish a position where you can turn things around.
39. Already Spoken For
Identify areas where the competitor has gaps on. In turn, pitch how your product addresses those gaps.
Getting sales objections is a good sign. It means they’re interested enough to keep engaging with you instead of dismissing you.
Overcoming sales objections is an opportunity for you as a sales rep to learn about your client’s needs and better communicate the value you can offer to them.
What are the types of sales objections you encountered as a sales professional? Share your experiences in the comments section below.