Follow These Three Tips to Pick Up the Sales Pace

Tactical use of online reviews, reputation-building techniques and automation of systems will bring customers to your door faster.

Brian J. Greenberg is an e-commerce and marketing specialist and author of The Salesman Who Doesn’t Sell. To learn more, visit
Brian J. Greenberg is an e-commerce and marketing specialist and author of The Salesman Who Doesn’t Sell. To learn more, visit

In a recent Gallup Poll, sales professionals were ranked lower on honesty than members of Congress. This exemplifies why consumers are increasingly looking to their peers, rather than companies, “gurus,” and other experts for advice on what to buy, eat, listen to, read and watch.

Amazon, for example, can attribute much of its success to mission-critical consumer reviews — raw peer-to-peer interaction that carries an enormous amount of weight in the hearts and minds of wary consumers.

As more people participate and contribute to social media, consumers are getting savvier by the day. The companies that thrive in this extreme vetting environment are the ones who boast salespeople who don’t actually sell. So many success and marketing books are published each year, and most of them are fluffy and useless. When added to the thousands of marketing articles that also come out annually, there is a ton of information to sort through to the point of information overload.

This as online entrepreneurs and business owners face a tremendous number of obstacles when it comes to marketing their companies. I know because I’ve been through them all and, in working through these adversities, I have developed a precise method to achieve long-term online marketing success.

Here are three methods you can use right now to start to close sales without actually selling:

1. Garner reviews on both your website and third-party websites that you do not control.

From my experience, people have an aversion to asking for reviews from customers. It is an uncomfortable part of the conversation if not handled correctly. There is a right way and a wrong way to do it. The most critical key is timing. The best time to ask for a review is after the service is complete and the customer is entirely satisfied and happy with the product or service. Customers appreciate the question; it shows them you care about their happiness.

After they have confirmed they are happy, it’s time to ask for a review. There is no need to be pushy about it. Plant the seed and let them know you will send them an email with a link to where they can post their feedback. It is as simple as asking: “Is it all right if I send you a feedback email?” After the customer confirms, you have a commitment.

When sending the feedback request email, include a link directly to the URL where the customer can post a review. Make it as easy as possible.

It is best to get feedback on your website first because it is feedback you control and have the option to not make public. If the customer provides a five-star review in your review system, then email them again with the exact comment they posted, and include links to third-party sites like Yelp, the Better Business Bureau and Google Business.

2. Leverage your online reputation for building trust with potential customers.

If you have garnered reviews on your website and third-party websites, you are halfway there. It pains me to see companies with great reviews not make them visible on their sites. I think people consider it a form of bragging to display reviews. It is certainly not. From my testing, the last thing a customer does before making a purchase is a Google search for your company name followed by “reviews” or “complaints.” People want to verify that you run an honest business.

I have found that displaying links to third-party review sites on your website shortens the sales process. People do not need to spend time searching your company online or contacting references. Potential customers will know you value your reputation. By leveraging your online reputation, you have built trust and conveyed accountability. This is the cornerstone of becoming a salesperson who doesn’t sell.

3. Delegate, systematize and automate so you can shorten the sales process and sell while you sleep.

You have built up reviews and have them prominently displayed on your website. To keep the reviews coming in, it is vital to make obtaining five-star reviews a companywide initiative that you can delegate. We have all our salespeople and customer service representatives ask customers to leave feedback. We have found it helps to incentivize employees with bonuses tied to reviews they bring in.

Reviews are a big part of shortening the sales process, though there are other sticking points. Make your frequently asked questions and terms and conditions visible to potential customers. Systematically answer their questions and concerns. What is the time frame for providing service? Who do I contact for problems?

To reduce resources needed in landing new customers, automate as much as possible. Email software such as ActiveCampaign can send out a drip of emails. Upload sales data to QuickBooks accounting software. Utilize a ticketing system like Zendesk to answer customer service requests. A multitude of software solutions are available to businesses to make the process more manageable.


Establishing an online reputation is like building assets that produce dividends. Every time you contribute to your assets, you are adding to a foundation that will continue to bring in revenue for the long haul. I have two golden rules: The first is to treat your customers with the same quality of service that you would like to receive, and the second is that happy employees mean happy customers.

With these fundamental concepts, businesses can build lean enterprises that will serve their customers, employees and profits in the most successful manner.


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