Outbound: Simple Sales vs. Complex Sales

The sales area is still a mystery for many people today. People usually atrelam the success of a seller in the Outbound to variables such as charisma, ability to overcome objections and build relationships. In fact, these are qualities that do help to sell more, but they have more effect in a simple sales scenario.

You might be thinking: what the hell is simple selling? And if there is a simple one, what are the differences between it and the complex?

Simple sales

It is the type of sale performed by sellers in malls of Taj residencia, retail and the like. Customers, mostly already feed the desire for a product and it is up to convince you that this is the ideal time seller to buy it. The sales techniques used in this sector are basically the closing ones, which create urgency in the buyers and shorten the transaction time.

There are some types of closing techniques, I will list the two main ones below and exemplify situations in which they are used:

Assumption closure

The seller assumes the buyer’s preferences according to some attitudes and tries to close the deal more quickly based on these points.

It’s more or less similar to what happens when you go to a clothing store and a particular item attracts your attention. The seller who will be tracking your purchase will assume you want to buy it and will try to “push” it anyway. The phrases you will commonly hear will be:

  • I see that this shirt matches your profile a lot.
  • According to the clothes you were looking at, I believe this one will suit your style better.

Closing Or/Or

To create urgency, the seller always presents you with two possibilities, such as:

  • Are we going to start implementing the product on Tuesday or Thursday?
  • Would you like a month of trial and then buy outright?

Neil Rackham, who developed the SPIN (Status, Problem, Implication, and Solution Need) sales methodology, found in his research that closing techniques only work in simple sales for a reason. By forcing the customer to make a decision, creating urgency in the customer, these techniques reduce transaction time.

In scenarios where prices are lower, the LTV of the sale is negligible and there are many customers wanting to purchase the product at the same time, the faster a sale is made, the more time is left to serve other people and increase the company’s revenue and commission of the seller. In Outbound, these techniques proved ineffective and generated incipient results, which were more linked to the Prospect’s need to acquire the product in question than the techniques actually having helped in closing the deal.

Complex Sales – Common Outbound Scenario

In the same survey, Neil Rackham found that salespeople who were trained in closing techniques were not successful when the sale was complex. But why didn’t an effective method in retail that help leverage the results of large chains get good results when the product being sold was more complex and the sales cycle was longer?

The answer today is pretty obvious to any salesperson, but at the time the survey was conducted, it revolutionized the way the business process was conducted.

Summarizing the 218 pages of SPIN Selling, the conclusion reached is: In complex sales and especially in Outbound, it is not an advantage to create urgency in the prospect while he is not properly qualified. The way created by Rackham to qualify them is the SPIN method, which basically consists of asking questions about situation, problem, implication and need for a solution. I’ll use as an example questions a CRM salesperson might ask to gather information about the prospect and qualify them.


  • Situation – Which CRM does your company use?
  • Problem – Has it met all your needs?
  • Implication – You told me it took two weeks to implement CRM in your company and it doesn’t have ERP integration. How does this affect tracking your sales metrics? Are they decentralized?
  • Need for a solution –  Are you interested in a CRM that integrates with your ERP?

Thus, in sales with an average Ticket, Sales Cycle and high LTV, a process is needed that creates urgency only at the right time, focusing more on qualifying and not pressuring the buyer beyond what is necessary.

We like to remind you that the SPIN methodology is not the only one used in the complex sales scenario. There are also Sandler, Challenger, Snap, among others. Later on, we will discuss how other methodologies work, but we recommend that you know how more than one works, as they all have strengths and weaknesses.

And you readers, have you seen any cases of misapplication of these sales techniques?

The Outbound Marketing team has an online consulting module where we can help you with training for the correct execution of an Outbound Sales process.

Do you want to recap this entire post in a simple and illustrated way? So be sure to check out our infographic on simple sales and complex sales.