38 Sales Questions To Quickly Identify Your Customer’s Core Needs – Tony Alessandra


Today’s buyers are complex. They have confusing wants and needs. They’re strapped for time. They’re hesitant to share information — yet have endless access to product details online.

To provide value to these modern buyers, we need to ask good sales questions. Whether you’re new to sales and looking for a go-to list of sales qualification questions or a manager looking to test new questions with your team, this list of great sales questions to ask customers will help you identify your their core needs.

Then, you can customize your sales presentations and pitches to their specific circumstances.

Best Questions to Ask in a Sales Meeting

When you’re speaking with a prospect for the first or second time, it’s crucial you ask the right questions. As a salesperson, your job is to discover their core needs quickly and succinctly. Here are a few questions to begin with:

  1. “What are your short-term goals? Long-term goals?”
  2. “What does this purchase mean to you? What does it mean to your company?”
  3. “What is your boss hoping to accomplish in the next year?”
  4. “How do your team objectives play into your department’s strategy?”
  5. “What do you perceive as your greatest strength? Weakness?”
  6. “How does your company evaluate the potential of new products or services?”
  7. “Who has your business now? Why did you choose that vendor?”
  8. “What are your buying criteria and success criteria?”
  9. “Where would you put the emphasis regarding price, quality, and service?”
  10. “What level of service are you looking for?”
  11. “What do you like best about your present supplier? What don’t you like?”
  12. “What do you look for in the companies you do business with?”
  13. “What might cause you to change suppliers?”
  14. “What do you like best about your current system? What would you like to see changed?”
  15. “What do you perceive your needs to be? How important are they?”
  16. “If you were me, how would you proceed?”
  17. “Which trade associations do you belong to?”
  18. “What will it take for us to do business?”
  19. “How soon can we begin?”
  20. “What is my best shot for getting back the account?”
  21. “What did we do in the last sale that impressed you most?”
  22. “What do you look for in your relationship with a supplier?”
  23. “Who was the best salesperson who ever called on you?”
  24. “If you could change one thing about your organization, what would it be?”
  25. “Do you struggle with [common pain point]?”
  26. “What deadlines are you currently up against?”
  27. “Which resource could you use more of?”
  28. “Would you rather cut costs, save money, or increase productivity?”

Best Sales Questions to Ask Customers

When you’re checking in with current clients with the hope of either upselling, cross-selling, or renewing, it’s imperative you ask the right questions.

If you fail to ask tough questions about the good and bad of your product/service, you risk missing warning signs they’re unhappy and would consider churning to a competitor. Don’t leave the door open. Close it with these questions:

  1. “On a scale of one to 10, how happy are you with our product?”
  2. “Why did you give us that score?”
  3. “Can you explain the weaknesses or challenges you’ve found in our product/service so far?”
  4. “What do you love about our product/service?”
  5. “How likely are you to recommend product/service to a friend or colleague?”
  6. “How has adoption and internal use gone?”
  7. “Do you feel you’ve received outstanding customer service?”
  8. “What can we do to earn your business for another year?”
  9. “Are you ready to renew today?” (Only if the first seven questions have had positive answers)
  10. “Would you be interested in our new add-on Feature X?”

Great sales questions enable you to tailor your messaging to your prospects’ goals and show them your solution is the best choice. Next, get tips on how to ask more effective sales questions here.

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