Recently, a friend of mine attended a trade show, where he heard a variety of lame sales lines intended to get him to make a buying decision on this or that product or service. He emailed me and suggested I write a post about some of these lines.

I thought this would be a fun post to write, so here are a dozen lame questions and lines that make salespeople look stupid.

(Warning: There is a serious dose of sarcasm in the accompanying comments.)

cheesy salesman pointing at you


“What will it take to earn your business?”

Uh, maybe you could act like a professional and show me how I’m going to benefit from your product or service?

shocked man


“Is price the only thing holding you back?”

No, but the fact that you think price is the most important issue shows your complete lack of sales ability.

man handing you his cellphone


“Here’s the phone, why not call your wife right now and talk to her?”


save money in pink penny bank


“Don’t you want to save money?”

No, I’m an idiot. But, please insult my intelligence again by asking another stupid question like this.

woman with a question mark on her forehead


“If I could show you (insert benefit), would you be interested?”

How about you ask me a question or two so you can figure out how your product will help me?

woman cutting price with scissors


“This price won’t last long.”

Really? You can’t come up with anything better than that?

Sold out


“At this price, we’ll be sold out by the end of the day.”

Sure . . . and your new shipment arrives tomorrow morning.

limited time only


“I don’t think we’ll be offering this incentive next week.”

Yeah? I bet it will be better then, so maybe I’ll wait.

Woman gesturing I don't know


“What do you know about us?”

Didn’t your CEO get sued for something?

sleazy salesman pointing


“What do I need to do to get you into…?”

You’re not “getting” me into anything with that approach.

funny old man

“Have you heard about us?”

No, and do you really think this question is going to make me want to listen to your sales pitch?

Older irritated woman with frying pan


“What are your needs?”

Why don’t you ask me some good questions that take a bit of thought and effort and I’ll tell you?

Insurance saleswoman meeting with clients


There are a million ways of pitching a prospect, but these are a few clichéd ways that it’s in your best interest to avoid.

See also:

The 5 best closing lines

7 insurance sales habits that give you a bad name

4 challenges you must overcome in insurance sales