ChaseData Call Center Software Blog

Using Active Listening on the Phone To Improve Sales

Posted by Ahmed Macklai on May 9, 2019 7:30:00 AM

active listening on the phone

How Active Listening on the Phone is One of the Best Practices for Cross-Selling and Upselling

Any call center agent who has been in the business for more than a few days knows that cross-selling and upselling are important parts of increasing sales and improving business when your center is focused on these kinds of metrics. These procedures have been in place since the earliest days of sales, with representatives trained to offer additional goods and services for any customer purchase made.

However, today’s customers are often too savvy to be talked into an additional purchase for the simple sake of spending more. They need a reason to buy - and it is your agent’s responsibility to provide them with one. Here, we’ll discuss how active listening on the phone can create the perfect setup for tailoring sales pitches to your consumers and creating genuine delight in your customers every time.

First - What are Cross-Selling and Upselling?

Cross-selling and upselling are like two sides of the same coin for sales representatives or call center agents. They are two important techniques for increasing sales numbers, each with its own value.

Upselling involves the increase of the purchase price a customer is willing to spend. When your consumer commits to purchasing an item, offering accessories - such as batteries, replacement supplies, light bulbs, or other materials they will likely need later - at the time of purchase are all easy ways to upsell to them. These items all increase their purchase price without majorly altering their overall purchase plan. This means they feel like sensible, organic choices to your customer and are easier for your agents to sell.

Another upselling technique that is commonly used is the upgrade suggestion. When a consumer chooses a lower-level or lower-priced model, your agent may suggest a more expensive option with more features. This may tempt a consumer to spend more so that they can get access to those additional features - and your sales team will gain access to that additional sale!

Cross-selling is slightly more difficult for less-seasoned agents to accomplish, but can be much more lucrative for your company once they master the technique. Cross-selling involves the suggestion of other items - related or non-related - to a consumer based on their purchase of a current item. This may be a related beauty product or a tech item that a consumer might love because they’re purchasing something vaguely similar. Whatever the item is, the suggestion is best made thoughtfully - after active listening on the phone by your call center agent.

active listening on the phone

Next, What is the Importance of Active Listening on the Phone?

It’s easy to tell your agents to suggest additional products or services to consumers over the phone in your call center. It’s quite another thing to actually see success with these techniques. The determining factor on whether you will or won’t often comes down to active listening on the phone by your call center agents.

When a consumer seems open to suggestion, they’re a perfect candidate for upselling and cross-selling. If they’re actively seeking advice, they are also an excellent candidate. These consumers are relatively rare compared to those who are unsure and less trusting, though, so it’s important to demonstrate that your agents are listening and care about what their customers have to say to gain their trust during calls.

What does building trust with your consumers mean? Much the same as building trust with any other person. It is important to balance honesty and the demonstration of value that additional products or services can offer to your customer. If something extra wouldn’t be of any value to them, don’t offer it unless they ask for it specifically. Stretching the truth to make a sale won’t result in happy customers in the long run once they realize the products they bought weren’t truly relevant to their interests - but actively listening and selling to your consumers based on what you hear will guarantee satisfaction.

Teaching active listening involves instruction in listening for specific clues. Is your consumer on a budget? Are they looking for specific tools, goods, or services? Do they need something that they can upgrade or scale back alter that you can offer them as a fully-featured version today? These are all things your agents can look for through active listening on the phone and use to cross-sell and upsell better products and create happier customers.

Creating Customer Satisfaction Through Sales

So, why is it so important for your agents to use active listening on the phone and cross-selling and upselling techniques to boost sales? It isn’t just about increasing those numbers, although that’s certainly important on the part of your center’s metrics. It’s also about delighting and satisfying each individual consumer - something that you have to do in today’s market with increasingly demanding modern customers.

People are no longer satisfied to simply have products suggested to them and to buy on the premise of those suggestions. They want to feel like they are being offered a special opportunity to buy into something exciting. They want to walk away happy with their experience - delighted that they made the decision that they did. Only by actively engaging with every consumer individually on the phone and listening to their concerns can you provide that kind of experience. If you are interested in learning more about how to put these techniques to work in your call center - and what technology solutions can help you do that - talk to the experts at ChaseData. We have everything your team needs to make the most of every phone call, so your customers are never left wishing they had gotten more and your sales teams are never left wishing for higher numbers at the end of a quarter. Give us a call today to see how we can help you achieve better metrics and happier customers!

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