The Science Of Winning Sales Conversations

A Classic Infographic for Gong


Gong studied more than 250,000 sales calls using artificial intelligence to examine trends and best practices for sales conversations. This infographic (originally published here) summarizes the study’s key takeaways.

When competitors are brought up mid-to-late sales cycles, the odds of closing slightly decrease. The Science of Winning Sales Conversations We analyzed 257,967 sales conversations using AI—here’s what we’ve learned Over the course of a year, Gong analyzed 257,967 B2B sales calls from dozens of customers lasting an average of 43 minutes. Here are 6 sales conversation patterns we discovered. Talking vs. Listening How long an average sales rep spends talking +11% Significantly boost opportunity win rates by increasing the prospect’s talk time Keep general “company overview” to two minutes or less Listen for competitor mentions early in the sales cycle The highest converting talk/listen ratio 43/57 If a prospect asks about or mentions your competitors early in the sales cycle, the odds of winning the sale increase Read our full research library by visiting The longer a customer can talk with little to no interruption, the better the close rate If customers speak for 4 minutes straight within a call (including short interruptions such as clarifying questions) the probability of winning the sale increases.If they only talk uninterrupted for a maximum of 50 seconds, the close rate is lower than average. When sales professionals talk about or brag about their company too much, there is a sharp negative correlation in winning the deal. If “company overviews” go on longer than two minutes, win-rates rapidly decline 49% higher conversation rate when competitors were mentioned at least once early in sales cycle, compared to deals with no competitor mentions. 43% 57% listen talk competitor mentions minutes % of rep company pitch (during call) 8 12 16 4 2 6 14 10 0 0 2% 4% 6% 8% 10% 12% 20% 20% 60% 100% 40% 60% probability for next step % probability for next step late stage early stage For a salesperson who spends a full 10% of the call discussing the company in general terms, the odds of a successful sale are only 25% as high as a top sales professional’s average win rate. Look for 3-4 price mentions in the 40-49 minute window of the call Sales conversations with the highest conversion rates involve 3-4 price mentions or questions by the prospect. Listen for timing signals When a prospect responds with some variation of we need to figure out X,” win rates and forecast accuracy decline. higher than average forecast accuracy when a prospect answers a timeline question using probably 73% Use risk-reversal language increase in win rates by sales professionals using phrases like: +32% All calls were mapped to CRM records to analyze against outcomes Calls were then speaker-separated, transcribed and cleaned Gong’s AI platform then analyzed all of the data, auto-categorizing information like: call topics, buyer and seller behaviors, key moments “probably” cancel anytime Easy opt-out no contracts 65-75% 25-35% average pitch top pitch 10 0 20 30 40 50 60 Top-performing B2B account executives most often discuss price in the 40-49 minute window of their conference calls. top avg