Skip to main content

How to Close a Sales Interview

You are a sales professional in a sales interview, This is no different to any other sales meeting you attend and you are expected to close.

I can't tell you how many times candidates ring after an interview to say fantastic meeting, got on like a house on fire. Did you close? No, it wasn't the right time. We got on so well it wasn't necessary.

We contact the employer with the feedback to be told, nice guy. I'd love to go for a drink with him, wouldn't hire him as a sales person though, because he couldn't close a barn door. So it's imperative that you close in every sales interview that you attend. 

With the economic turbulence of 2022/2023, showing that you can close a sales deal and get things over the line is even more crucial.

Some years ago I conducted some research.  I asked every candidate I spoke to whether they closed at interview and I put a tick in either the yes or no. Over the course of the month just under 3/4 of sales professionals in sales interviews did not close. It's a travesty.

So how do you close? Let's go back to sales basics

Direct close- "I can start immediately.  Based on this interview have I secured the role?" This can sometimes be considered a little too direct in a  sales interview. But if the moment's right, go for the jugular.

Alternative close - "I understand you're looking for somebody to start in September. Would you prefer me to start on the second week or third week?" Closing in this kind of way is slightly less direct and can be delivered with a touch of humour if appropriate.

Deferred Close- " I understand that you're going to be talking to Aaron Wallis to provide detailed feedback.  When should I expect to hear whether or not I have secured the role please?" This is a good professional close but should be accompanied by further questioning as to how they feel the interview has gone.

Assumptive close- "I've enjoyed the interview and personalities that I've met.  I like the business and can effectively sell your products and services.  I'm confident I will be successful in the role and look forward to working with you to achieve and exceed sales targets when I start"

Assumptive and very natural, this ticks the box that you have closed the interview down.

But how do you get to the point where it is natural and appropriate to close? As a sales person, you know you have to build a platform from which it is possible to close effectively. You've got to ask lots of questions beforehand.

When you feel the interview is coming to a natural conclusion, when you feel that their questions have come to the end, ask questions about your own performance

A good example is, "How do you feel our meeting has gone today?" It's no longer an interview, it's a sales meeting. You're on a level.

Ask questions about how they feel you'd fit in with other team members, whether they feel that you are a cultural match for their business, whether they feel there are any areas of your expertise or your qualifications or abilities that aren't right for the business. Overcome them. Acknowledge that you've overcome them by gaining the agreement of the interviewer.

"OK, so you didn't feel that I had enough experience of national account type business. I hope that I've now overcome that. Do you agree?" Yes.

Then move on to the trial-close. Are there any further things that you'd like to explore before this meeting closes? If you're not getting any negative feedback at that point, you've got the opportunity to go for the close.

I can't stress how important is to close.  You must ensure that you close at every sales interview that you attend, otherwise you are not asking for the business.

Date published: 29th February 2024

A photo of Darren Dewrance, Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment

About the author

Darren Dewrance

Darren spent six years in sales and field sales before joining the original sales recruitment specialist, Austin Benn, in 1998. After achieving the status of top consultant, out of about seventy at the time, Darren rose from Senior Consultant to Operations Manager of the commercial sector before leaving to join a London based Headhunter in 2003 before setting up Aaron Wallis with Rob in October 2007.

With a natural leadership style, Darren is an expert on putting his finger right on the heart of the problem. His natural commercial instincts have helped hundreds of employers make better recruitment decisions. Darren is married with two children, and when not at work or with his family, he likes nothing more than to be on the side of a river or a lake with a rod in his hand.

Please call us to discuss your next move

Milton Keynes

Birmingham

Bristol

Our employers say...

Giles is highly professional and was a pleasure to work with. He achieves excellent results through his personable skills and tenacity. I have no hesitation in recommending Giles to anyone who considers employing his services.

Commercial Director, G4S Government & Outsourcing Solutions

Understood the type of person we were looking for and good follow ups - not too frequent.

Managing Director, bigHead Bonding Fasteners Ltd

George is a rare find in the world of recruitment - communicative without being pushy or over-bearing. He listens and understands what the customer needs as gets to know the business to ensure he provides fully competent candidates who fit.

HR Manager, Big Dug

I have used Aaron Wallis to fill a number of our Sales Development Manager roles and I have found them to provide a very professional service. I will use their services again in future recruitment campaigns.

HR Business Partner, Greene King

I can't fault Sam or AW! Sam was a pleasure to work with and provided great support from the start. Sam always provided me with timely updates when required and provided outstanding candidates!

Director, Waste Managed Ltd

Sophie did a great job at understanding our business and our needs, she is extremely professional and we hugely benefitted from her experience and expertise.

HR Manager, The Data Privacy Group Ltd

Giles Phillips is a rare find in the minefield of sales recruitment; an honest and thoughtful recruiter who considers the needs of both the client AND the candidate to create perfect role matches. I look forward to working with him again in the future.

Marketing Director, City of London Police

In an industry where people over promise and under deliver, Rob and his teams have consistently provided a high-quality service. It is great to deal with someone that has an excellent understanding of UK industry, and a passion for sales.

Sales Manager, TR Fasteners

Since joining DSGi, Rob has been a supplier of permanent staff and has performed to an extremely high standard, successfully filling 98% of roles he has worked on. If anyone is looking for a good sales and marketing based consultancy with an informal yet professional approach, I would recommend Rob.

Senior Recruitment Consultant, DSG International

We were impressed not only by the quality of candidates you found for us but also the level of information, preparation and qualification you put into the process. You continually kept us informed of each person’s feelings about the process, which is very important but often overlooked. I am looking forward to working with your company again in the future.

Commercial Director, Incentive Facilities Management

George is a joy to work with, and I'd recommend him to anyone seeking that unicorn hire - he found me mine, and I'm delighted!

Director, Education Support

Generally good standard of candidates. Especially liked the personality profile. Overall good value for money and will certainly use you again.

Managing Director, Medicash

Very professional service and will certainly be in contact for future recruitment.

Director, Blakedown Sport & Play Ltd

We appointed Aaron Wallis in February and the successful candidate, out of the six which Aaron Wallis introduced, was able to join Alphametrics before the end of April. The whole process took less than three months. I would recommend Aaron Wallis' services to others without hesitation.

Chief Financial Officer, Alphametrics

I have always found Rob to be very knowledgeable about our industry sector, and it is refreshing to see after all of these years that Rob continues to quickly and accurately understand my requirements.

HR and General Manager, THK

Rob is a true recruitment professional that goes the extra mile that I have never experienced from any other recruitment agency before. If you need sales people call Rob or someone in his team, as they really are experts in sales recruitment.

Sales Director, Inside Business

Thanks for all your help during the recruitment process. I have been extremely impressed with Aaron Wallis especially when compared to other agencies we have dealt with. I really felt you grasped the type of person we required and found strong candidates.

UK Sales Manager, Nexcom

I found Aaron Wallis to be very professional and efficient, taking time to understand the role and the type of candidate we were looking for. The candidates they put forward met our criteria and were of a high standard. The service they provided was exemplary and I would have no hesitation in recommending them, and will certainly consider using them again in the future.

HR Assistant, Fischer Connectors Ltd

George came recommended by a colleague and has been a pleasure to work with. He was great at updating us on his progress and ensured a great experience for both client and candidate.

HR Manager, Annapurna Recruitment Ltd

As always we were extremely impressed with Rob's understanding of the role and our specific needs.

Managing Director, Speck & Burke

Aaron Wallis has continuously provided us with suitable candidates that have been proactively sourced. Having used countless recruitment companies, Aaron Wallis are the only company that I can count on to deliver.

Managing Director, JARK Healthcare Recruitment

Thank you for your dedicated help during the recruitment process - we came to you after unsuccessfully searching elsewhere, and hired, not one, but two! Quick response times, and a really personal approach, without being pushy.

Managing Director, Accora Ltd

Really good service. Just the right amount of contact and easy to deal with.

HR Manager, Zircon Software Ltd

I really liked the YouTube presentations which made the service seem both simple and accessible. The company came to see me, and my management team, at short notice to present their service and I liked the support and advice that I received about maximising the results from the applicant.

Managing Director, Leisuresec plc

I could not suggest anything I would like you to do better. The service you provided materially exceeded my expectations. I would especially like to commend Simon Bonner; he is easily the best recruitment consultant I have ever dealt with. I particularly valued his advice and guidance throughout the recruitment process. 

UK Sales Manager, BTS Holdings Limited 

I just wanted to thank you for your help with our recruitment process which went very smoothly and has – we hope – found us just the person for the job!

Managing Director, Citrefine International Ltd

Rob’s knowledge of the recruitment industry and his thoughts and how to make it better for his clients have always been eye opening. I would recommend Rob to anybody who is looking for a professional, knowledgeable and flexible recruitment specialist.

CEO, Friday Ad Online Services

Our candidates say...

George Humphries was a complete professional at every point, from our first phone conversation to his “good luck tomorrow” text on Sunday before I started in my new role.

E. Fry, Candidate

The Recruitment agent I used, Simon, was extremely helpful and really went the extra mile to ensure all of my questions were answered, and that I felt as comfortable and prepared as possible. Very professional company and would definitely recommend to others. Thank you Aaron Wallis!

A. Callaby, Candidate

Simon was knowledgeable on his clients history, background and what their requirements were and he worked around time zones, holidays and a pandemic to get the right result.

J. Tooze, Candidate

I can honestly say that the time and expertise you gave me was way beyond any other recruitment consultant I dealt with. You are a rarity in your industry.

S. Akers, Candidate

Very good advice and support was given during the course of the interviewing process. Potential job seekers would be well advised to use this company whilst looking for their new career.

R. Speakman, Candidate

I had the absolute pleasure of working with George Humphries on finding a placement best suitable for me.

A. Van Der Mescht, Candidate

I had a great experience. Helped me every step of the way to get my new job. Sophie was very polite, kind and helpful!

J. Parnham, Candidate

Friendly, proactive, communicative. Overall a really positive experience.

R. Houston, Candidate

Fantastic service, helped me find my ideal job quickly and smoothly. Would highly recommend them.

C. Caine, Candidate

Rob was really helpful when I was putting together a presentation for the second stage interview. Overall their communication was great and kept me updated of any progress

J. McGrattan, Candidate

Professional and responsive from start to finish. I would highly recommend. Special thanks to Sophie J for her help and support throughout.

N. Leney, Candidate

Excellent experience. Knowledgeable staff and really went the extra mile. Found my ideal position and I couldn't be happier. Special shout out to Sam and George: who made the process smooth and easy for me. Highly recommend.

K. Pearce, Candidate

Sophie has been fantastic and always so attentive, highly recommend.

T. Ashbourne, Candidate

I had a very good experience with Aaron Wallis. The company itself is offering great content for all things related to the hiring process. I definitely recommend.

J. Ostermeier, Candidate

The detail put into the preparation for interviews and the detail of the job description was first class. Rob and Simon in particular are amongst the best I've ever dealt with.

K. Peacock, Candidate

When talking with Simon you felt relaxed cared to help you find a position that suited your needs

D. Pinder, Candidate

Very polite and friendly and was very helpful finding me my next new role.

K. Craggs, Candidate

Sam was by far the most professional and helpful of any individual I've ever dealt with through a recruitment agency. He was supportive and thorough throughout the process. He definitely goes the extra mile for you. A pleasure to deal with. I would highly recommend him. An asset to Aaron Wallis

M. Wyer, Candidate

Fantastic customer service, communication was brilliant, happy polite people to talk to, made everything a lot easier and smoother. Thank you for all your help getting me back in the work force, Keep up the good work :-)

K. Everitt, Candidate

Sophie helped me secure a new role I have been searching for. She took her time to explain clear and concisely all I needed to succeed at the interview stage. Thanks again Sophie!

O. Oladejo, Candidate

Excellent service, very professional and friendly, would and have, recommended Aaron Wallis.

E. Heley, Candidate

Managed to get me placed within a week! Really friendly and easy to deal with. Always available for a call and my biggest challenge was I was in work at the time I was looking for my next opportunity (which is stressful) but Sam made that easy.

P. Fitzsimons, Candidate

I would highly recommend Aaron Wallis Recruitment, Darren was extremely helpful and provided me with plenty of advice and support throughout the whole process.

D. Bretherton, Candidate

Aaron Wallis is an outstanding recruitment agency specialising in high calibre sales positions. I was working directly with Darren Dewrance who went above and beyond my expectations in sourcing me my perfect role. I was kept in regular communication with Darren and he worked extremely hard to secure my dream job. Highly recommended and Thanks Darren for all your expertise and hard work.

R. Sealy, Candidate

Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment are a very friendly and professional recruitment organisation who listen to your needs, work with you and act on your behalf which sets them apart from many of their competitors who in my experience are willing to throw anything at you. We discussed my history, my preferences and my wishes - one opportunity was introduced. It was perfect. I start at the end of June.

R. Buckley, Candidate

The staff at Aaron Wallis were fantastic. Throughout the process, they maintained excellent communication and I always knew where I stood.

M. Owusu, Candidate

Perfect from start to finish. Simon deserves a shout out. Best recruiter there is. If you need a job, this guy will get you one. He's like the super man of recruiters. Top man, can't recommend him enough.

M. Crisp, Candidate

For anyone looking for work, I can't recommend Aaron Wallis highly enough.

C. Rockliffe, Candidate

Aaron Wallis (and in particular Rob Scott) have been fantastic throughout the recruitment process, and even a few months down the line, still continues to care. Rob clearly cares about each individual and has a wealth of knowledge and expertise, which shows in the work he does. Each candidate is not just a number, and the support received from Aaron Wallis has helped me get a career which I truly enjoy.

M. White, Candidate 

Wanted to say a huge thank you to Simon Bonner who has just helped me secure my new role. He was one of the most professional recruiters I have ever worked with he was supportive really quick at replying and really put me at ease.

J. Marcinkiewicz, Candidate

Wanted to say a huge thank you to Simon Bonner who has just helped me secure my new role. He was one of the most professional recruiters I have ever worked with.

J. Marcinkiewicz, Candidate

The most professional recruitment agency I've ever worked with. Robert Scott was extremely proactive and send me a detailed briefing before each interview, ensuring I was well prepared.

D. Bermant, Candidate

Less than two weeks after joining Aaron Wallis I was offered my new job. I got a £10,000 rise in my basic salary, car allowance, a laptop and many other perks, which will help to further my career. I definitely would not have found my dream job without the help of Aaron Wallis.

C. Hoy, Candidate

George above and beyond to make sure I had everything I need to secure my new role. Outstanding Professional.

A. Kirkland, Candidate

The service provided by Aaron Wallis has been just great. I was constantly informed about what was going on with the process interview and the agent has always been supportive and kind to me.

L. Colagrossi, Candidate

Sophie contacted me about a role explained the details clearly and made sure I was ready for the interview. She kept in touch every step of the way till I started the job. Thank you Sophie for a great experience.

S. Powell, Candidate

George is a fantastic recruitment agent and provides a great service. It was a pleasure I thoroughly recommend George to anyone.

C. Beaugie, Candidate

Good swift process with Aaron Wallis, informative regarding the role and the process was moved at a good pace with healthy interaction. Would recommend them to anyone pursuing a change.

S. Bartlett, Candidate

A great recruitment company to work with. Excellent experience with Aaron Wallis through the entire recruitment process. The team was really professional and extremely helpful. Darren was a pleasure to work with. He was friendly, supportive and gave me great advice. Thank you very much!

A. Bauchet, Candidate

I would highly recommend thank you to Darren for helping me secure my new job role! Excellent service all round!

G. Thompson, Candidate

Darren at Aaron Wallis was really encouraging and helpful. He was very responsive and regularly made phone calls to explain the job opportunities available, and guided me through the application process.

A. Brown, Candidate

I have to say coming across and having dealings with Aaron Wallis proved to be very successful. Being highly experienced did not seem to count for much during my job search bit a conversation with Robert Scott gave me a real confidence boost and enabled to get a position at the age of 63. Great service!!!

D. Burgess, Candidate

I have to say using Aaron Wallis Recruitment has been nothing but an absolute pleasure. I've used many agencies over the years as the client and the candidate and its not always been a pleasurable experience!

L. Knowles, Candidate