Where is the Sandler Sales Methodology More Effective?

Selling Methods - What Is This About?

If you want to improve your sales activities and find out more about this topic, you will come across a large number of Sales methodsrecommended by a wide variety of experts. Of course, everyone claims that their method is the best to inspire and convince customers. We take a close look at what's behind the most common Sales methods plugged.

Sales method 1: OPAL question model

At this Sales method it is a communication strategy for the sales pitch. The point here is to free sales talks from a certain superficiality: Listening instead of talking and getting to the heart of the matter by asking the right questions. The seller asks the interested party or customer the following questions about the OPAL sequence:

  • Oorientation questions (deal with the current situation at the customer)
  • Pproblem questions (reveal dissatisfaction of the customer in his situation)
  • A.Impact questions (exploring whether these dissatisfactions are significant for the customer)
  • L.Solution questions (also called pay-off questions, let the customer recognize the benefit he has from solving the problem)

So it's about understanding the starting point first. Subsequently, the customer's dissatisfaction is uncovered through problem questions. The aim is for the salesperson to find out what needs he is covering with his offer could. Only when it has been clarified through impact questions that the dissatisfaction or problems are of importance to the customer, he will recognize a benefit from a solution. If a problem has no real meaning for a customer, he will see no need for a solution. A classic impact question is: "What do your customers say about the frequently occurring delivery delays ...?" Now the customer can see how his current situation could worsen. At this moment, the customer should be made aware of the value of problem solving through solution questions. Such a question is, for example: "What could you use the time saved from ... a day for?" Ideally, the customer should formulate the benefit himself through this question and come to the conclusion that the salesperson's offer is a good choice.

The advantage of this Sales method is that the customer has the impression that they came up with the solution to the problem themselves. There is a real dialogue with the customer in which the customer feels that the seller wants to add value to the customer.

Book tip for this method:“Customer benefit as a sales factor by Christian Sickel, Gabler Verlag, 6th edition. >> Order here!

Sales method 2: Challenger Sale

The Challenger Sale distribution method was created by Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson for B2B sales developed. She bets, unlike most Sales methods, not on building a relationship between seller and customer.

There are five types of sellers according to this method:

  1. The relationship manager
  2. The packer
  3. The lonely wolf
  4. The wait-and-see
  5. The challenger

According to the studies by Dixon and Adamson, the fifth type, the Challenger, is the most successful - it made up 40% of the top salespeople. The approach of the challenger in the sales pitch is characterized by the fact that it challenges the customer.

At the beginning of the conversation, the challenger gives the customer something new. It is not about the product that is to be sold. Rather, the goal is to evoke an aha moment in the person you are speaking to by putting your situation into larger contexts and uncovering needs that the person you are speaking to was not yet aware of. The Challenger challenges the customer to think outside the box and also to look at his own situation from a new point of view. It can happen that the seller and customer do not always agree.

These Sales method only works if the seller has in-depth specialist knowledge and knows how to argue for his point of view. It is important to know the customer's situation and to respond to the customer individually. This method is therefore well suited to creating tailor-made solutions that clearly differ from the competition.

Sales method 3: Miller-Heiman method

To the classic Sales methods also counts the Miller-Heiman method, named after Robert B. Miller and Stephen E. Heiman. This conceptual approach requires careful preparation. It is not just a matter of presenting a product, but of offering the customer added value through the products or services. For this purpose, as much data as possible about the customer is collected, about his goals, his needs and current challenges. Then the seller creates a concept that shows the customer suggestions for improvement and solutions.

These Sales method is primarily aimed at decision-makers in companies. The basic idea behind this is that careful preparation significantly shortens the sales process itself. Because the offer should match the customer so precisely and offer such great added value that long negotiations are no longer necessary.

The Miller-Heiman method is very customer-oriented, as the focus is on the best possible solution for the customer. However, this method requires a lot of time and work in preparation - which would be in vain if the customer declined the offer.

Selling Method 4: N.E.A.T Selling

Even behind this Sales method hides an acronym: Need, E.conomy, Access to A.uthority and Timeline.

The first aspect relates to the needs of the customer. The seller's offer should match what is really important to the customer. The economy also has an impact on sales. The seller should be able to convey in concrete terms what economic advantages the offer has for the customer. Access to Authority means access to executives. It's about addressing executives and decision-makers when selling. The easiest way to access it is through existing contacts in the company. The last aspect, the timeline, gives the sales process a time frame. The seller should set the customer a deadline for his decision, but not apply too much pressure in order not to deter the customer.

The advantage of this method is that it combines different approaches. The time factor ensures that the seller does not wait forever for a decision. The seller should decide on a case-by-case basis which deadline is appropriate. Because the customer shouldn't feel pressured to buy.

Selling Method 5: SNAP Selling

SNAP-Selling focuses on the customer's decision-making process and aims to influence it positively. SNAP stands for:

  • Keep it Simple
  • Be iNvaluable
  • Always Align
  • Raise Priorities

That means in German that it depends

  • process easy to keep,
  • yourself indispensable close,
  • always flexible to be
  • and priorities to put.

The seller should apply these four principles in the customer's decision-making process. This process is broken down into three decisions. The first decision is made about whether the customer gives the seller his time and listens to the seller's offer. With the second decision, the customer determines whether he is ready for changes or not. The third decision is ultimately the purchase decision.

This sales method is intended to make the sales process as simple as possible for the customer and to flexibly align it with the customer.

Selling Method 6. Sandler Selling System

The Sandler Sales method breaks away from the classic distribution of roles in sales: The Sandler Selling System assumes that buyers and sellers alike strive for success. This method provides that potential obstacles and problems that could stand in the way of the conclusion are addressed first. The idea behind this is that sales talks often cost both sides a lot of time and then fail because of inconsistencies such as time planning or budget. By directly addressing obstacles, both parties should be able to assess more quickly whether a cooperation is an option.

The advantage of this method is that the salesperson gets to know the customer's objections at an early stage and can then react to them with his or her arguments - or realizes that no common ground is possible and no valuable time is lost on a hopeless sales pitch.

Sales method 7: Target Account Selling (TAS method)

With the Target Account Selling Method (TAS method), large projects are supervised by sales teams. The offer is created on the basis of a SWOT analysis in which the customer is carefully analyzed.

The implementation of the TAS method requires that the company recognizes its key customers. The greatest effort is made for these customers, as they make up the largest share of sales. The sales team has to maintain relationships with key customers and deliver tailor-made solutions.

The advantage of this method is that the key customers feel connected to the sales team or the company through the intensive support and tailor-made offers. A disadvantage can arise if a key customer is lost - on whom the company depends. Therefore, the potential of the customer base should be checked regularly in order to take new key customers into account and to prevent possible break-ins.

Selling Method 8: Solution Selling

Solution Selling pursues a consulting and solution-oriented approach and is therefore mostly used for services or products that require explanation. Expertise and empathy are crucial to this Sales method apply. Because in the sales pitch, the salesperson must be able to respond to the needs of the customer with the right offer. In addition, the salesperson needs to know how to deal with different types of customers in order to achieve their desired goal.

Research or the collection of customer data in advance is important so that the seller has an understanding of the customer's situation. Knowing about what your competitors are offering is also worthwhile. In this way you can make a comparison and highlight your unique selling points in the customer conversation.

During the conversation, solution selling is all about asking questions and listening to the customer. Then it is the seller's turn. With his expertise, the seller should be able to offer the customer helpful information and individual problem solutions.

The advantage of this Sales method is that there is a relationship between buyer and seller. The buyer gets the impression that he has been well advised and is more likely to turn to the same contact person for follow-up purchases. It should be noted that this method is time-consuming, both in preparation and in the discussion phases. A quick deal is not likely to be achieved in this way.


There are many Sales methodsthat are sometimes more and sometimes less similar. It is advisable to choose a targeted and at the same time customer-oriented method. Responding to the needs of the customer is an important success factor in sales. Depending on the type of customer, it is advisable to react individually and not strictly on one Sales method to hold on. Because in the end customers are only human.

Much more important to us in sales training is that we choose the right method for you that is based on your goals. Because for us, the goal is always in the foreground, the path is often secondary.

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