Q: I’m somewhat new to sales. I’ve been able to secure many appointments with new prospects. I get an opportunity to provide pricing, but then I don’t get any farther and I can’t seem to close the sale. Can you give me some tips for turning these prospects into clients?

A: There are no secrets to closing a prospect and creating a client. You must make sure you’ve built a strong relationship first. This will help you “read” prospects in terms of timing and their desire to give you business. Many sales reps fail to ask for the order and wait for the prospect to offer business to them. We need to focus on moving the prospect along a sales cycle that starts with the introduction and ends in revenue collection. The sales cycle can vary depending on your industry, but there isn’t much difference from industry to industry. Make sure you set up the correct steps to move this target from a prospect into a client.