Sales objections are a natural part of the sales process. If your prospects push back and ask you questions, it's a great sign— it proves that your sales process is working— you're getting engagement, replies, and booking meetings.

Despite that, objections can be tricky to manage if you're put on the spot.

To ensure you're never caught out on a call and have a process to guide your prospects through sales conversations, you should review and plan for how you're going to overcome the most common sales objections you're receiving.

In this guide, we'll walk you through what sales objections are, the main types of objections you'll hear, as well as real examples of common objections your prospects will ask you.

By the end, you'll be ready to engage with leads, qualify prospects, and handle objections with ease.

Let's dive in.

What are sales objections?

Sales objections are any concerns or questions your prospects and sales leads have about your product or service that are acting as a barrier to purchase.

Sales objections are a natural part of the sales process. After all, wouldn’t you have a few questions if someone reached out to you asking if you’d like to become their customer?

Typically, these sales objections fall into one of four main categories.

The 4 Types of Sales Objections to Look Out For

1. Budget

Any objection that’s related to cost falls into this bucket. Budget-related sales objections may be because a prospect thinks your product or service is too expensive, but they can also be simply because you haven’t shown the true value to them yet.

2. Authority

You can’t reach the right person with every email you send. Sometimes, you’ll hear prospects saying that they need to review your offer with their boss, other team members, CEO, or CFO. If you have an authority-related objection, it means you need a way to get in touch with the real decision-maker.

3. Need

Need-related objections stem from your prospects either not understanding the pain point you can solve, or having existing solutions that they’re happy with for now. Sometimes, a need-related objection can be as simple as preferring to do nothing to avoid the cost and time associated with working with a new vendor or agency.

4. Trust

When you reach out to a prospect with a cold email, there’s a high chance they don’t know who you are, and in turn, don’t trust you completely.

Getting around trust-based objections isn’t that hard if you offer a genuinely valuable product/service and can back up your claims with evidence, but it’s always good to be prepared.

What is Objection Handling?

When you receive objections during the sales process, you need a way to handle them. That’s called objection handling.

As you talk with more and more potential customers, you should take note of common objections and pushbacks that come up.

Save these somewhere (a simple spreadsheet or a Google Doc is good enough), and before sales calls, make sure to review them so you go into every meeting well prepared and ready to handle any objection thrown at you.

As your team grows, you can use your database of sales objections to educate and onboard new sales reps and make sure your sales materials are designed to help reduce objections.

Now, let's jump into some of the common objections you're likely to see on your sales emails and calls.

Budget Related Sales Objections

1. How much will it cost me?

The people you're cold emailing or having meetings with don't want their time wasted. If you're going to charge more than they can justify, they want to know as soon as possible and stop the interaction.

But, there's good news: if your prospect is asking you how much you charge, it means they're potentially interested.

When you get a reply to a cold email with this objection, firstly, be honest. Mention the starting cost of your product or service.

But, at the same time, highlight the cost savings and ROI that you deliver.

For example, if you run a lead generation business that charges a flat retainer, but delivers 30 qualified leads per month that your prospect could convert into customers, frame it in a way they understand with a question like: How many leads would we need to generate for you to make this cost back?

If your prospect realizes they only need to close 3 of those leads to make your fee worth it, they're not going to worry about the cost as they understand the ROI potential is higher.

2. Can you give us a discount?

If your prospects are asking for a discount once they know your pricing, there are two main potential reasons:

  1. They don't match your ideal customer persona (ICP) and truly don't have the budget

  2. They're looking to try your service with less financial risk

Whether or not you discount is up to you.

If you want to make sure it's worth it, look at your customer lifetime value (LTV). If your LTV is high, and the prospect asking closely matches your ICP, then it may be worth offering a short-term discount in exchange for the change to onboard them.

But, if the prospect is a great fit for your business, a discount is unlikely to be the reason they don't become a paying customer.

3. This is too expensive for us right now

If you hear this price objection, it doesn't mean it's a hard fact.

A prospect might have looked at your pricing page, but hasn't considered the potential ROI of using your product/service yet.

There are a few effective ways to move past this objection.

Firstly, understand why your prospect is saying that.

  • What kind of pricing did they expect and why?

  • What are they comparing your pricing to?

  • Did they miss any features or services you offer?

Then, focus on the benefits.

  • Will your pricing be offset by revenue growth you can help with?

  • Will you save your prospect enough time to be worth the cost?

If you can ensure your prospect understands the true value you're providing and still isn't convinced they want to spend the money, then, it may be worth putting this deal on hold.

The key is to remember that you need to focus your conversations on the value you provide, not the initial price you charge.

Time Related Sales Objections

1. We're waiting for [Q2/new funding/new hire] before making a decision

If you've cold emailed someone and they tell you now is not the right time because they're:

  • Waiting for new funding to come in

  • Still planning their next quarter

  • Waiting for a new hire in the department you'd be working with

It's a valid reason to object.

To overcome this, ask them for more details.

When will they be ready? Will it be next week or in three months? Make sure to set a date with them for you to follow up and when the time comes, reach out again to see if they're ready.

It's better to accept this objection rather than be overly pushy.

In the meantime, you can occasionally check in by sending them useful, relevant resources, or offer your help as a sounding board for new decisions your prospect is making at their company.

2. This isn't a priority for us

If you're selling a solution to a problem your prospect doesn't have (or doesn't know they have), it's an uphill battle.

Rather than pushing back and trying to prove why they should become a customer, it's best to educate your prospect about the problem.

For example, if you're selling software to help with webinars and you reach out to someone who currently hasn't run a webinar before, it'll be a hard sell. Instead of convincing them why they need your software now, you could send over some useful resources on the benefits of webinars, and guides to running webinars.

When your prospect decides they want to run some in their business, they'll already trust you as an advisor as you've provided ongoing value without asking for anything in return.

Another way to handle this objection is to highlight what your prospect is missing out on.

Imagine you're selling a tool to eliminate manual CRM entries for sales reps— a task they usually spend around 3-5 hours per week doing. You reach out to the CEO of a company with 3 sales reps to see if they're interested. The CEO says this isn't a priority— and they're probably telling the truth. To handle this objection, don't double down on your product feature. Instead, focus on the benefits, framing it around the time savings: "Would it be a priority if we could save your team up to 15 hours per week on manual data entry".

From there, your pitch does become a priority, as your prospect will be imagining what their team could do with an extra 15 hours per week.

Need Related Sales Objections

1. We're working with [competitor]

Just because your prospect is already working with your competitor (or another alternative), it doesn't mean they're not open to other options. If they replied to your email, it means there's probably still an opportunity for you.

At this stage, ask questions that will help you learn more about their current needs:

  • What are you currently missing that competitor doesn't offer?

  • What would it take to get you out of your contract with [competitor]?

  • What would make it a no-brainer to use our product/service instead?

Focus on learning more about your prospect's needs and it will become easy to overcome this objection.

In some cases, it may be that they're best staying with the competitor. But, if you can clearly see they're missing out on features or services that you offer, there's a high chance your potential buyer will be willing to switch.

Even if they don't switch immediately, proving yourself to be helpful will set you up well for when your buyer enters the market again.

2. How would this help us?

If a prospect isn't aware of the problem you can solve, it's not the end of the story.

It will be harder to make a fast sale, but, if you hear this objection, making a quick sale isn't your goal.

An effective strategy here is to show them a case study.

For example, if you helped a similar company close more sales, save on hiring costs, or improve their marketing performance, your prospect will be interested in hearing about it.

From there, you can continue to provide value and help your prospect, providing guidance and fielding questions they have about your business, processes, and services.

As your prospect learns more about the problem, you'll be the go-to provider to help solve their problems.

You could also offer a risk-free way to get them to work with you.

For example, if you run a Google Ads agency and your prospect has always run ads in-house, you could offer to manage a portion of their ad spend for free for a set time period.

If you show you can get great results for them, they'll be more likely to end up as a paying customer at the end of it, as you've proved why they need your services.

Authority Related Sales Objections

1. I'll need to review this with my team/CEO

It's an all-too-common scenario— you email back and forth with someone, jump on a few calls to discuss working together. When you ask them if they're ready to proceed and become a customer, you get hit with: "I'll need to run this by my boss/our CEO/CFO".

The best way to handle this sales objection is before it happens. Ask prospects if they're responsible for the final decision, and if not, ask how you can get the decision-makers on a call with you.

And remember, just because your prospect isn't the key decision-maker, it doesn't mean you should forget about them. It's going to help to have them on your side, especially if you'll be working with them in the future.

2. [Key Decision Maker] doesn't want to sign off on this

If your prospect is on board but there's a key decision-maker that doesn't want to sign-off on the purchase, it's bad news, but it doesn't mean it can't be overcome.

You'll need to ask your prospect who the decision-maker is, and what they care about.

If it's the CFO, you could prepare and send over a cost breakdown of your product/service, and highlight potential revenue gains from it.

If it's the CEO, highlight how it can help with high-level business goals and help drive growth.

The decision-maker may have not fully understood what they were signing off on if they weren't involved in the entire buying process, so the key is to make the information you send easy to understand and easy to say yes to thanks to the benefits you highlight.

Trust Related Sales Objections

1. Who are you?

If you're reaching out to a prospect that doesn't know you and has never heard of your business, they're right to be apprehensive.

It's your job to build trust and show why they can trust you.

The first way to do this is to use social proof in your outreach.

In your cold email, you could write a line such as: "We helped [similar company] and [similar company] achieve [results]".

If your prospect recognizes the two companies you called out, they'll instantly trust you more.

Or, as you're researching your prospect, you might find that you have something in common: mutual friends or connections, worked in similar industries, or attended the same events. If that's the case, you can lead your cold email with that fact. A simple but personalized opening line calling out a similarity is a powerful way to break the ice and build trust.

2. I'm not sure you're the right fit for our needs

If you're emailing large corporations and you're part of a new startup or small team, there are going to be initial trust issues. Your prospects will be worried that you're not going to be in business in six months, or don't have the bandwidth to work with a company of their size.

Instead of letting this sales objection get you down, turn it into an advantage.

Highlight how you can help them see better results, or provide improved customer service compared to the traditional solutions.

You can also work hard to build rapport with your prospects during your outreach process and in your initial conversations so they trust you as a vendor.

However, if you hear this sales objection regularly, there may be some truth to it. It's worth reviewing the people and companies you're reaching out to and verifying that they do match your ICP and are the type of prospect you want to sell to. If they are, then it may be worth reviewing how you position your company in order to build trust and authority in your industry.

4 Ways to Deal with No Response

An often-forgotten sales objection is the worst of them all: no response from your prospect.

Typically, no response will be due to one of, or a combination of the factors most sales objections fall into.

If you've sent a cold email and haven't got a response, here are the steps you should take.

1. Make Sure You Follow-Up

Firstly, don't forget the follow-ups. Our data from millions of cold emails shows that over half of replies come from a follow-up email.

Simply add a new step in your campaign in QuickMail, and your follow-up will send after a preset delay (for example, 3 working days) if your prospect doesn't reply.

It's a simple way to ensure your prospect sees your email and has a chance to consider your ask.

2. Add Social Proof

As mentioned above, make sure you're proving why a stranger should trust you. Mention past results you've achieved for similar companies is a great start.

On top of that, you could add other social proof signals in your cold email, such as your company's Capterra or G2 ratings in your email signature, or mentions of past relevant awards you've won.

A few simple adjustments to your email can go a long way to building trust, and it can be the difference between getting a reply and not.

3. Alternate Your Value Propositions

If you have 3-6 follow-up emails you have the chance to showcase different value propositions and use various call-to-actions to encourage a reply from your prospect.

For example, the call-to-action in your first outreach email could be: "Do you have 20 minutes for a call on Thursday?"

In your second email, change it. Try asking a question like: "Shall I send you a case study showing how we helped [company] exceed their sales targets? "

Sending Emails That Get Replies with QuickMail

If you want to engage with potential buyers using personalized cold emails that get replies, QuickMail is the platform for you.

Once you've created your prospect list, you can bring them into QuickMail manually with a CSV, or automatically from your Google Drive.

From there, you can write customized cold emails that are each personalized to your recipient thanks to attributes and merge tags. You can run A/B tests to find messaging that resonates with your prospects and ensure you get the most replies possible.

Advanced Metrics

Once your campaigns are running, your cold emails will be sent out every day, and you'll receive replies directly in your inbox.

QuickMail also offers powerful deliverability tools, one of which is a native MailFlow email warm-up tool integration that makes sure your emails always land in your prospects' inboxes. Start your free trial today.