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By Doug Dvorak

Your livelihood as a sales professional depends largely on the levels of trust and credibility you build with your prospects and customers. Try these tips and tactics to improve your credibility and trustand boost your sales.

1. Relate to Your Customers

As a sales rep, you should try to connect with your customers on both a business and a personal level. When you try to see things from their point of view, you will come up with better solutions to their problems. And when customers see that you are genuinely interested in them, they will begin to trust you more.

2. Be Credible

As a sales professional, your credibility is your livelihood. When people invest money in something new, they look for reliable and credible sources. A way to demonstrate credibility is by having good references. When a prospect calls your references and hears positive things about you, the credibility of you and your company increases dramatically.

3. Be Truthful

By speaking truthfully and acting as a trusted advisor, you will earn more respect and trust. When prospects respect and trust you, they are easier to work with and are generally happier clients.

4. Train

Being trained in new and basic sales methods is crucial to your success. For example, someone who runs two miles every day for a year will easily be able to run two miles any day of the week; the same applies to a salesperson. A sales rep who trains on basic selling etiquette and new sales techniques consistently will be able to sell their product/service more easily compared to those that dont. Also when you train, your confidence will increase and you will be able to gain the trust of your clients or prospects with greater ease.

5. Research

Performing proper research has many benefits. Researching your prospects will allow you to:

When you research and learn more about your prospects and how your product/service can help them, you are showing a high level of commitment. This commitment to excellence and deeper knowledge builds trust.

6. Have a Good Attitude

In sales, having a positive and confident attitude pays dividends. Your attitude will shine through in everything, from your appearance to your proposal.

7. Tell a Story

By engaging your clients or prospects in a story, you force them to use their imagination. When people are using their imagination, you can gain and hold their attention more easily. The level of engagement increases tenfold when your story is persuasive and is directly related to a prospect.

8. Ask for the Sale

Professional sales reps close their sales, and most of the time they do this by asking for the sale. You must always ask your prospect to move forward to the next step. Many sales are lost simply because a sales rep never asked for the sale. Leaving any step up to the prospect is a mistake, you must walk your prospect through the entire sales cycle, including asking for the signature and a check.