Handling sales rejection when you’re trying to close a sale is tough – Don’t let that stop you making the next sales call. Remember, every part of sales from getting a lead to making a deal is a numbers game. Only those that persevere will survive.

As a commission only sales representative, learning how to handle sales rejection can be difficult, especially if you’re new to the sales market. If you want to make it, you need to:

  • Be confident in your own abilities.
  • Understand that it’s difficult to get potential customers to say “Yes.”
  • Have the emotional resilience to handle sales rejection.
  • Not let hearing “No” repeatedly damage your enthusiasm or confidence.

worried man who isnt handling sales rejectionIn short, don’t lose the drive to continue making sales calls, chase down leads, or close sales deals. Your business hired you as their sales rep, and that was for a good reason. You have the potential to negotiate and close a sale, but remember – It’s all a numbers game.

Don’t let “No” paralyze you into inaction – It can impact your drive to continue making sales calls. The result is a negative effect on you and on the sales business’s bottom line. That’s not why they recruited you as their sales rep.

Time To Hire says: Even the most prepared and top performing commission sales reps still hear sales rejections on a regular basis, and many of them have difficulty handling it – You’re not alone.

What You Can Do to Improve Your Sales, Profit, and Commission

The best sales organizations invest in training and development to give their commission sales reps the right expertise to bounce back from sales rejection and close a deal. Powerful sales processes, good sales pitches, and rebuttal techniques can significantly improve the chances of you making the sale. Ask your business if they have these useful tools, and if not ask if they’re going to develop them.

Why prospects don’t buy

There are many reasons why sales prospects don’t buy including:

  • Lack of time
  • An unwillingness to commit
  • Other things on their mind
  • Concerns about cost, cash flow or budget constraints
  • Other pressing matters
  • And more. 

Even people and businesses who could obviously benefit from a product or service will say “no” more often than they say “yes”. It’s a simple business reality, and great salespeople understand it’s not a reflection on them. If you want to become a great salesperson, the sooner you realize this, the better.

In fact, the biggest difference between top sales and average sales (especially commission only) depends on how well individuals and sales teams handle sales rejection. Skills, experience, processes, and preparation are important, but it’s attitude, toughness, and a willingness to learn how to handle sales rejection that will help you more than anything else.

When do prospects buy?

Time To Hire says: While closing rates differ across industries, studies reveal that only about 2% of deals are actually closed during the first contact.

These 2% of prospects who buy at a first meeting are people who have already done their research and know exactly what they’re looking for. It’s often a matter of luck if you place a sales call to the right people at the right time.

The remaining 98% of your potential clients only buy:

  • Once trust has been built.
  • The need for the product or service has been demonstrated.
  • The clear benefits of the product or service are understood.
  • The idea of buying has moved up on their prospects priority list.

80% of sales only happen after at least five follow-ups calls or meetings. On average it takes at least five contacts before a prospect ever says “Yes”. Here’s the statistics behind why you need to persevere:

  • 44% of commission sales reps give up after hearing “No” once.”
  • 22% more give up after hearing “No” twice.
  • 14% more give up after hearing “No” three times.
  • 12% more give up after hearing “No” four times.

Time To Hire says: Astonishingly, only 8% of salespeople contact their prospect five times. If you’re in that 8%, you’ve got a huge advantage over other commission only sales reps.


Five Tips to Improve Handling Sales Rejection and Close the Sales Deal

Your ego is not important

Understand that prospects have their own set of problems, receive sales calls routinely and have trained themselves that “No” is always the right first answer. Don’t see their rejection personally, it’s simply a learned response.

Knowledge is vital

Salespeople must give themselves every advantage. This means knowing your business’s  products and services inside and out. More importantly, you also need to understand your prospect’s issues and pain points. When you can demonstrate how your products and services can solve their problems, that’s a great start to a conversation.

Learn the metrics

Learn what your average industry statistics are for making and closing sales, so you can see how you’re doing. Set your expectations around those measurements and aim to beat them.

Follow the sales processes

Your business should have techniques, methods, and playbooks for making sales. Understand and follow the processes your sales business has created to increase your chances of a successful sale.

Ask for more training and support

If you want to hone your skills further, ask if there’s more in-house training, guides, or mentorship available to help you develop.

Don’t freestyle

Just because you’ve been a successful salesperson in another industry, that doesn’t mean the same tactics will work in your current sales position.

Follow up, follow up, follow up, follow up

Remember, follow up at least five times to close a sale – Persevere.

Time To Hire says: Hall of Fame baseball players only have a .300 batting average, which means they fail 70% of the time (and they certainly don’t quit the game after striking out a few times). You’ve got the potential to be a great salesperson.

If you’re a sales manager, let us help you hire the best sales reps. Whether you need a sales team or just the right commission only sales person, we can help.