8 Effective Closing Techniques To Improve Inbound Sales

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If you’re a sales professional, you know that choosing the right closing technique is vital for making a sale. When you’re finished with sales prospecting, you need to engage with the customer to convince them to invest in your brand. 

Especially in new interactions, however, onboarding clients can be a tricky business. In a sales pitch, the salesperson should aim to: 

  • Discover the customer’s needs
  • Effectively communicate how specific products or services offer an affordable and satisfactory solution to those needs

Within these two main goals, a sales team must employ the most effective closing technique for each situation. Below, we go over eight effective options that are sure to improve inbound sales for your business. 


The question close 

During the sales process, you must understand your customer’s needs and promote positive conversation. One way to do this is with the question close. This sales closing technique uses questions to build solutions for your prospective client. It also allows you to identify potential obstacles to making the sale. 

If you have a client that tends to play it close to their chest or is unsure of what they want, this may be the technique to use, because the only way to make a successful sale is to provide a prospect with what they need. 

Answers to these questions can also help inform your email marketing campaigns, for example. 

When utilizing the question close make sure to: 

  • Pair questions with statements;
  • Use open-ended questions that promote conversation; 
  • Ask for a follow-up; and
  • Ask if the prospect wants to begin drafting a purchase order.

The assumptive close 

Assumptive closes assume the deal has been made. This technique does not allow the potential client the time to think of reasons to not take the deal. To do this, the sales rep must assume good intentions from the start. By assuming an agreement has already been reached, you will bring authority and direction to your sales process. 

The art of making this deal is in closely monitoring your prospect’s interest, engagement and objections throughout the sales call. Before you make any assumptions, you need to be sure they are at the close stage of the sale cycle. Disrupting this cycle can lead to the loss of the sale. 

When using this technique, try to: 

  • Match and mirror your prospect;
  • Make sure each step in the sales cycle has been met; and
  • Use this strategy to improve online sales.

The summary close 

The summary close wants your customers to be visualizing their purchases with your business. You want to give a well-executed closing argument for why the prospect should choose you. The goal is to summarise the highlights from your previous conversations that will convince your customer to sign on the dotted line. 

Sometimes the best sales prospecting technique stems from your ability to persuade the customer past the finish line. Your sales force needs to be trained and able to form convincing arguments based on what a prospect wants and needs. 

This strategy works well if you and the prospect have already had an extensive discussion about your products or services, and they just need a little push to send them over the finish line. 


  • Sell the benefits of your products, not the features
  • Don’t introduce new information
  • Get down to the prospect’s bottom line

The artisan close

Instead of highlighting the benefits, the artisan close allows you to highlight the amount of skill, labor and time that went into creating your product. This technique works best with prospects who appreciate the process, not just the product. 

This technique allows you to take your prospect on a journey through your brand. You can show them various aspects of production and fulfillment that allow your company to shine. In the end, the prospect should have a new appreciation for your brand. 

If done well, this can be an extremely effective sales technique, especially if it is another business. After the pitch, you can direct the potential customer to LinkedIn or your website to further engage with your company. 

In e-commerce B2B transactions, the prospect is more likely to care about the entire process that leads to the product. 


The puppy dog close 

This technique is completely based on customer experience. It allows potential clients to test drive your products risk-free. The name comes from the analogy about buying a puppy from a pet store.

A child is begging for a puppy, but the parent isn’t sure if it’s the right fit. The sales manager comes up and tells the parent to take the puppy home for a few days, risk-free. The parent can return the puppy, no questions asked, and receive a full refund. Of course, the child falls in love with the puppy and the sale is made. 

The puppy dog close is great for the careful decision-maker. It’s hard to say no to an offer that comes without any strings. 


The Ben Franklin close

The Ben Franklin close is also a great technique for prospects who are careful decision-makers. It’s named after the United States founding father because of his affinity toward the pros and cons list. This technique lets you and your prospect go over the pros and cons of investing in your company. 

Present the idea of drafting a pros and cons list when you are dealing with a hesitant client. It may be a good idea to use a screen-sharing tool that allows you to complete it together over the phone. However, make sure: 

  • The pros outweigh the cons at least two to one;
  • You get creative with the pros; and
  • You overcome their objections (without being pushy).

The sharp angle close

Sometimes, prospects ask for price reductions or add-ons when you are closing a sale. If given the agency to do so, the sales rep can use the sharp angle technique to drive the customer toward buying. It is best used when your prospect is most likely going to buy but needs a little push to commit. 

Identify their obstacles and remove them by offering a limited-time deal. The salesperson agrees to the price reduction or add-on but gives the client limited time to accept. By qualifying them for a deal, you elevate the customer experience and deliver on a sale. 


The now or never close

Also called the urgency close, the now or never close places pressure on a prospect to make a decision. Like the sharp angle close, it can be accompanied by a special discount, freebie, or other offers. This technique allows you to create a sense of urgency. 

Also, you can offer to withdraw the whole deal to push them to accept the offer. This is called the take-away close. Only use this technique on prospects who are becoming a time-sink. While the strategy of all or nothing can help you make sales, it can also cause you to lose them. 



Having multiple closing techniques at your disposal is vital to improving your inbound sales. Consider getting a PaaS application to help your IT team develop a platform that will allow your sales team to manage prospects and utilize these strategies quickly and effectively. 

If you guide the prospects through the sale cycle with a sense of confidence and determination while using the techniques above, you will never go wrong. 

Sam O’Brien is the director of digital and growth for EMEA at RingCentral, a Global VoIP, video conferencing, and call center software provider. O’Brien has a passion for innovation and loves exploring ways to collaborate more with dispersed teams. He has written for websites such as G2 and HubSpot. Here is his LinkedIn profile.

  • Originally published April 21, 2021, updated March 29, 2022