Overcoming Competitor & Client Objections

Master the art of overcoming competitor & client objections with our comprehensive guide. Learn top client concerns and how to address them.

Have you ever been in the middle of a sales pitch, feeling confident and on a roll, when suddenly the client throws an objection your way, and you're left scrambling for words?

If you learn how to handle objections effectively, you'll feel more prepared and be able to use those objections to your advantage. It's a skill that can significantly boost your confidence and close rates.

This blog post explains why you should sharpen your objection-handling skills and how to do it effectively. We'll discuss the reasons behind client objections and the most common objections you'll likely face and give practical techniques to handle them like a pro.

Why Train Your Team to Overcome Client Objections?

Sales representative addressing client objections during a sales call

Objection handling is the art of addressing and overcoming a potential customer's concerns about your product or service. It's listening to their worries, understanding the root cause, and providing reassurance or solutions to turn a "no" into a "yes."

35% of sales leaders believe objection handling is their sellers' biggest challenge. Proper objection handling training can change that for your sellers. 

When your team knows how to handle tough questions, they'll approach each sale confidently. This increased confidence makes for a smoother sales process and improves close rates. 

Showing you understand and can address client concerns builds trust, enhancing customer relationships. This can lead to long-term partnerships and repeat business. 

Objections can also reveal what's important to your clients, providing insights that help you tailor your approach for the current sale and future interactions.

Why Do Clients Object?

You should know what drives customers to object. Often, a deeper motivation lurks beneath the surface. Proactively addressing these underlying reasons mitigates concerns before they become full-blown objections.

Let's look at some of the most common reasons people object and how you can spot and handle them:

1. Lack of Knowledge

Sometimes, clients object simply because they don't have all the information they need. They might say something like, "I don't think this will work for our company," when in reality, they don't fully understand how your product or service operates.

Provide clear, concise information upfront. Use simple language and relatable examples to explain your offering. 

For instance, if you're selling a marketing automation tool, you might say, "Think of it like having a super-efficient personal assistant who handles all your email campaigns and social media posts, saving you hours each week."

2. Specific, Warranted Concern

Other times, the client is concerned about a specific aspect of your product or service. For example, they might worry about implementation time or compatibility with their existing systems. Anticipate common concerns and address them early in your presentation. 

For example, you could say, "You might be wondering how long it takes to get up and running. Most of our clients are fully operational within two weeks, and we provide hands-on support throughout the process."

3. Hidden Agenda

Sometimes, the stated objection isn't the real issue. A client might say your product is too expensive when the real problem is that they don't have budget approval yet.

Ask probing questions to uncover the true concern. You might say, "I understand price is a consideration. Can you tell me more about how your company typically decides on investments like this?"

4. Perception Issue

The client might have a misconception about your product, service, or industry. For instance, they might think all CRM systems are complicated and time-consuming.

Address common misconceptions early. You could say, "Many people think CRM systems are complex, but ours is designed with simplicity in mind. Most users can learn the basics in just an hour."

5. Unclear Communication

Sometimes, objections arise because your message isn't clear. The client might not see how your solution addresses their specific needs.

Tailor your presentation to each client's unique situation. Use their language and relate your solution directly to their goals. 

For example, "You mentioned earlier that improving customer retention is a priority. Let me show you how our system has helped similar businesses increase repeat purchases by 25%."

What Do You Need to Overcome Objections?

Sales representative preparing sales materials and sales collaterals to overcome client objections

Overcoming objections, especially those related to competitors requires preparation and the right tools. 55% of people say they depend more on content to research and make purchase decisions than a year ago.

You need to prepare your sales materials. Here are those items that can help you effectively address these challenges:

Gather Compelling Case Studies

Arm yourself with industry-relevant case studies. 73% of successful content marketers use case studies in their strategies. These real-world examples demonstrate how your product or service has solved problems for businesses similar to your prospects. 

Even better, seek out case studies or testimonials from customers who've switched from a competitor to your organization. These stories can be incredibly powerful, showing prospects that others have faced similar decisions and found success with your solution.

Create a Competitive Comparison Document

Develop a comparison document highlighting your advantages and features against competitors. 

This isn't about bashing the competition but clearly illustrating where your offering shines. Ensure this document is fair, factual, and focuses on your unique benefits.

Develop Competitor-Specific Scripts

Prepare a script with tailored responses for each competitor, explaining why a prospect should choose you. This ensures your team is ready to address specific competitor-related objections confidently and consistently.

Prepare Competitive Offers

Consider what you're willing to do to win a customer from an existing competitor. Could you offer to buy out their current contract? Could you provide your product for free until their existing contract expires?

Trials or pilots can be particularly effective here. They allow the prospect to experience your solution firsthand with minimal risk.

6 Effective Techniques to Handle Objections

Handling objections effectively is as much about your approach as it is about the information you provide. Here are six powerful techniques that can help you navigate objections with confidence and skill:

1. Gratitude

Always start by thanking the prospect for sharing their concerns and communicating candidly. 

A simple "Thank you for bringing that up. It's an important point to discuss," sets a positive tone. Acknowledging their concerns demonstrates you're interested in hearing their perspective.

Expressing gratitude also fosters a more collaborative atmosphere, where the focus is on finding a solution together, rather than a salesperson pushing a product.

2. Empathy

Sales representative addressing client objections through active listening and empathy

Next, demonstrate that you understand their perspective. Even if you disagree with the objection, letting the prospect know you see where they're coming from can prevent the conversation from becoming adversarial. 

Try something like, "That's a valid point, especially considering the challenges in your industry." This approach helps maintain a collaborative atmosphere.

3. Discovery

Don't rush to counter the objection immediately. Instead, ask questions to understand what's motivating it. 

For example, "Can you tell me more about your concerns?" This gives you more information and shows your interest in addressing their needs.

4. Ask, Probe, Confirm

Dig deeper into the objection and confirm that you hear the prospect correctly. This might sound like, "So, if I understand correctly, your main concern is [restate objection]. Is that right?" This ensures you're addressing the real issue and not making assumptions.

5. Show Value

Once you fully understand the objection, show value through supporting materials or a revised offer. This is where your preparation pays off. 

You might say, "I understand your concern about [objection]. Let me show you how our solution specifically addresses that issue."

6. Proof Points/References

Leverage the power of case studies, testimonials, and client references to approach the objection from a third-party point of view. 

For instance, "We had a client in a similar situation who found our product actually [benefit that addresses objection]. Would you like to hear more about their experience?”

What Are the Most Common Objections?

Being prepared with thoughtful responses to these common concerns can make all the difference. Let's explore some of the objections you're likely to face and how to handle them:

1. "Your price is too high."

Price objections are perhaps the most common hurdle you'll encounter. When a prospect says, "I'm sorry, but that's way out of our budget," don't panic. Instead, be ready with data to justify your pricing model and highlight the return on investment (ROI). 

For example, you might say, "I understand your concern about the price. Let me show you how Company X saved $50,000 in the first year alone by implementing our solution."

2. "I don't believe this will work for us right now."

When prospects can't see an immediate fit, it's your job to paint the picture for them. Provide relevant use cases and examples of how you've helped similar companies overcome analogous challenges. 

You could say, "I hear your hesitation. Let me share how we helped a company in your industry increase their productivity by 30% within three months of implementation."

3. "This is not a priority" or "This is not a good time."

These objections often mask deeper concerns or competing priorities. Reiterate the challenges you're solving and the risks of inaction. Use success metrics to quantify the opportunity cost of not prioritizing now. 

For instance, "I understand you have a lot on your plate. However, our data shows that companies delaying implementing this solution typically lose $10,000 of potential savings each month. Can we explore how to make this work within your current priorities?"

4. "I'll buy from you if you add the 'X' feature."

Feature requests can be tricky. Have a roadmap ready to validate that their request is being considered. Alternatively, suggest creative ways to augment your existing offering to achieve their desired outcome. 

You might say, "While we don't currently have that specific feature, our 'Y' feature accomplishes the same goal. Let me show you how it works."

5. "Do you have resources in my time zone/region to support me?"

Global support is increasingly important. Highlight your follow-the-sun model, localized resources, or 24/7 support capabilities. 

You could share, "We have support teams in three time zones, ensuring that help is always available when you need it. Our APAC team just helped a client in your region resolve an issue within 15 minutes last week."

How to Handle Pricing Objections

Sales representative addressing pricing objections during a sales call

Pricing objections may be common, but with the right approach, they can be overcome. Let's walk through a step-by-step process to handle these tricky situations:

Step 1: Ask Clarifying Questions

When a prospect says, "Whoa, that's way more than we were expecting to pay," don't immediately jump to defend your pricing. Instead, take a moment to understand their perspective.

Prepare a list of probing questions in advance. Some examples include

  • "Can you tell me why you feel the price is too high? What price were you expecting?" 
  • "Do you see the price being a major obstacle?" 
  • "What should happen to make the offering worth the price I quoted you?"

These questions help you understand their perspective and pricing assumptions, allowing you to address their specific concerns.

Step 2: Set Up an Alignment Call

If the real challenge seems to be that the prospect doesn't fully grasp the value you provide, or if other stakeholders are the pricing skeptics, it's time to get everyone on the same page. 

Set up a call to walk all decision-makers through each line item, demonstrating how it relates to the value and ROI you'll deliver.

For example, you might say, "I'd love to schedule a call with your team to break down our pricing structure. We'll review each component and show how it directly contributes to the 20% efficiency boost we project for your operations."

Step 3: Use ROI Tools

Leverage ROI calculators or craft a detailed business case that outlines your solution's costs and projected returns versus doing nothing. This concrete data can be very persuasive. 

You could say, "Based on the information you've shared about your current processes, our ROI calculator estimates a 250% return on your investment within the first 18 months. Would you like me to walk you through how we arrived at that figure?"

Step 4: Share Success Metrics

Provide educational resources and benchmark data that show how to measure success and ROI in your product category. This helps prospects understand the full value of your offering beyond just the price tag.

You can develop a library of resources such as whitepapers, blog posts, or video tutorials that explain key performance indicators (KPIs) relevant to your product.

Step 5: Leverage Social Proof

Share case studies and testimonials from similar customers who illustrate the positive business impact and ROI achieved from your offering. 88% of people trust online reviews just as much as recommendations from friends. Use this to your advantage.

For instance, "Company Z, which is similar in size and industry to yours, saw a 40% reduction in operational costs after implementing our solution. Would you be interested in reading their full case study?"

Step 6: Facilitate Peer Conversations

Sometimes, hearing it straight from the horse's mouth is the most convincing. Offer to connect the prospect with a satisfied customer who can speak to their first-hand experience and ROI over the phone. 

You might say, "I'd be happy to arrange a call with the CFO of Company Y. They had similar concerns about pricing initially but have since renewed their contract with us three times due to the value they've received."

Mastering the Art of Objection Handling

Objections aren't roadblocks – they're opportunities. They're chances to demonstrate your expertise, showcase your product's value, and build stronger relationships with your prospects.

Knowing why people object, preparing for common objections, and mastering effective techniques for handling them can help you overcome obstacles and pave the way for meaningful conversations.

Listen actively, respond empathetically, and collaborate with prospects to find solutions that meet their needs.

As you put these strategies into practice, you'll likely find that your confidence grows, your relationships with clients deepen, and your sales results improve. With practice and persistence, overcoming objections is an art you can master.

Take Your Sales Skills to the Next Level with Our Complete Guide to Sales Enablement

Ready to supercharge your sales performance? Download our "Complete Guide to Sales Enablement" and learn to close more deals, handle objections like a pro, and drive urgency from start to finish. 

This comprehensive guide covers everything from creating effective sales collateral to mastering objection-handling techniques.

Inside, you'll discover:

  • The essentials of sales enablement and why it matters
  • How to align your sales collateral with each stage of the sales cycle
  • Strategies for creating powerful one-pagers, case studies, and buyer's guides
  • Techniques for beating the competition and handling common objections
  • Methods to drive urgency and close deals faster
  • Key metrics to measure your sales enablement success

Don't let another opportunity slip away. Download your free guide now and transform your sales approach!

You may also be interested in

Looking for more awesome content?

We have a lot more for you. Click the button below to sign up and get notified when we release more content!

View more