10 Phrases to Avoid at All Cost When Selling And What to Say Instead

1. Original

Who’s the decision-maker? (Makes people feel unimportant.)


Would you be open to walking me through the decision-making process?

2. Original

I haven’t heard back from you. (Feels like you’re blaming your prospect.)


Have you decided to defer the project?

3. Original

Here’s why our product is right for you.


Our product isn’t right for everyone. Here are the benefits, and here are the drawbacks.

4. Original

I’d love to meet with IT.


Would it make sense loop in IT to determine if we’re compatible with your API?

5. Original

Does that make sense? (Feels like you’re questioning someone’s intelligence.)


How does that sound?

6. Original

Obtain a 360-degree view of your customers. (Jargon)


See all your customer’s data in one place.

7. Original

I’ll follow up in a few weeks.


What next step, if any, would you like to take?

Typically after people see a demo, they want to loop in IT to determine if our API is compatible. Would that make sense for you, or am I jumping the gun?

8. Original

To be honest…


Don’t say that. It implies you are not honest the rest of the time.

9. Original

Just following up


John, we analyzed 937 cold calls that booked meetings. And have a slideshow on what each of those calls has in common. Is this something you’d like to see?

10. Original

“Why are you upset?”

“Why did you do that?”

“Why is the project behind schedule?”

“Why” can put people on the defensive because it can sound accusatory.


Instead, substitute “why” for “what” or “how.”

“It seems like you’re upset. What’s going on?”

“How can help?”

“Seems like the project is behind schedule. What are you up against?”