You can’t get the sale till you ask for it.

You can’t get the sale till you ask for it.

Written By Jeffrey Gitomer

KING OF SALES, The author of seventeen best-selling books including The Sales Bible, The Little Red Book of Selling, and The Little Gold Book of Yes! Attitude. His live coaching program, Sales Mastery, is available at



You can’t get the sale ’till you ask for it.

Seems too simple. Just ask.

In most cases to get the sale at some point you must ask for it. “Yes, Jeffrey,” you say, “but when do you ask? What’s the perfect time to ask?”

How do I know? No one knows that except you. I can only tell you it’s a delicate combination of the prospect’s buying signals, and your gut feeling.

How and what to ask are easier to define than when. Since the “ask” is a critical part of the sale, you’d better be prepared with a number of options for the how and what part.

Important note: Here’s what never to ask. “What will it take for me to get your business?” or “What will it take to earn your business?” That’s an insult question. Great salespeople figure out what it takes, and then do it.

More important note: Many salespeople are “ask reluctant.” If this is you, just realize the worst that can happen when you ask is that the prospect says “no” which to any good salesperson means “not yet!” Big deal.

How do you ask for the sale? Here are 7.5 ways…

1. Ask What’s the risk? When you ask the prospect what risks are associated in doing business with you, real objections surface or (and here’s the best part) there are usually none that come to mind. You say “Well, Mr. Johnson, when would you like to start not risking?” and the sale is yours.

2. Ask When is the next job? If you’re making a sale where there are lots of opportunities (printer, supplies, temp help, construction, graphic design) you only need to get one job (order) to prove yourself.

3. Ask for an indirect commitment. Could you arrange your schedule to be there at delivery? How many people will need to be trained? When can we set up training? (This is the assumptive position, explained in depth in an earlier article.)

4. Ask What’s preventing it? Is there anything preventing you from doing business with us? What’s in the way? What are the obstacles?

5. If there’s an obstacle or objection ask Is that the only reason? In other words, Mr. Johnson, if it wasn’t for (objection) then we could…

6. Ask or communicate creatively Go to the 5