How Many Sales in 1 Sale?

By Mike Coday •  Updated: 03/29/21 •  6 min read

The guy couldn’t sell anything.

It wasn’t for a lack of effort. He went out knocking every single day. He came in soaking wet from sweat at the end of each and every day… with nothing to show for all his hard work.

He finally gave up after two solid weeks of making nothing happen.

I still think about that guy. Not because he didn’t sell anything, but because he killed himself trying.

If folks just getting into this business would work half as hard as he did and had a little bit of sales talent and some solid advice, they would make good money. Trust me, even veteran sales people know they could be making a lot more money if they worked that hard.

That’s not what this article is about though…

I want to talk to the folks who are selling a little, but not making as much money as they think they should.

Anytime I’m trying to figure out where the problem is, I like to break the sale down into all the small sales it takes to actually make 1 sale that puts money in your pocket.

Let’s start…

Sale #1 – You have to sell yourself on getting out in the neighborhood.

Honestly, this is where most of the problems start. If you’re not getting in front of people, your sales will suffer.

How many times have you rolled out of bed, put down the coffee, got in your truck and drove out to your neighborhood in the past week?

Going in to the office doesn’t count. Talking to the secretary won’t do it. You aren’t going to make money reading the paper or posting on Facebook. You have to get out in the neighborhood.

Have you sold yourself on going out this week?

Sale #2 – Sell your prospect on opening their front door.

Have you ever checked your mailbox and all you had was junk mail? What do you do with junk mail?

Listen, I don’t want to offend you, but if you look like trash when they stare out their peephole, they aren’t opening the door.

They’ll ignore you like junk mail.

Dress like you might be somebody important or somebody friendly or somebody interesting.

Honestly, the best way to dress is what folks in the corporate world call “business casual”.

If you can’t sell people on opening their front door very often, you’re going to have to work extra hard to make a living.

Sale #3 – Sell your prospect on starting a conversation.

You can’t sell to people who won’t talk to you. Think about it – you don’t buy from people you don’t talk to.

If they aren’t talking, they aren’t buying.

My wife gets mad at me from time to time. I usually deserve it because I can be a real jerk… at least that’s what she tells me. 🙂

When my wife is mad, she won’t talk. I’ll still get the occasional “you disgust me” look, but nothing verbal. As long as she’s silent, I know I’m still in trouble.

But if I can just get her talking!!!

Once she starts talking, I know that I’m just about to leave the dog house. I’ll try jokes, ask her to help me find something or trick her by asking about the kids… anything to get her talking.

That’s your job!

Anything to get them talking (within reason) is what you’ve got to do.

Sale #4 – Sell your prospect on a free inspection or a free estimate.

If you’ve got them talking, your next sale is to sell the free inspection or estimate.


If you’re great at getting folks talking, but you’re terrible at closing sales, I want to make a suggestion right now.

Why not team up with another sales person in your office who can close deals and offer them a deal?

You’ll get the appointments, they’ll close the deals and you’ll split the commissions 50/50.

Before you dismiss the idea completely, let me tell you why you should consider this option.

It is better to make 1/2 than make 0. You get to watch how they close the deals and learn to do it yourself. Once you’ve got your confidence up, you can start closing them yourself.


Back to selling the inspection or estimate…

The reason why this sale is so important is because it kicks in the “law of reciprocation”.

If you do something for them, they become more likely to do something for you. It is an unwritten rule of the human race. We all live by it. That’s why your prospect may resist your free offer. They don’t want to obligate themselves.

But this is a sale you need to make. It is possible to sign contracts by skipping this step, but not the norm.

The free offer is a part of the dance that it takes for your prospect to become comfortable with you. They need a little bit of time to find out if you’re the type of person they want to do business with.

Sale #5 – Sell them on getting to the kitchen table.

I’m going to give you the best way to do this in a second, but why is the kitchen table so important?

We do business at the kitchen table.

Seriously, we tell people “NO!” at the front door, but we say “YES” at the kitchen table. Where would you rather try to close a deal?

Here’s the best way to get to the kitchen table…

It all starts at Sale #4 and this is how it goes: “I’m going to get my ladder and inspect your roof (or measure your roof). When I get done, I’ll ring the doorbell and we can go inside, sit at the kitchen table and go over what I found, okay?”

Once they reply, “okay”, you’ve just closed Sale #4 and Sale #5 at the same time. Do your inspection, ring the doorbell, go inside and sit at the kitchen table.

Obviously, there’s more selling to do once you get inside, but I’m wondering, how are you doing with these first 5 sales?

Answer honestly. If you’re breaking down at any of these sales, go back and work on it this week so you can start making more money next week.

Okay, what questions do you have?

Let me know.


Mike Coday

Mike started selling roofs in '95 while working as a youth pastor at a small church in North Texas. A decade later he transitioned to speaking at industry conferences and training outside sales teams. Today, he works exclusively as the premier consultant to roofing company owners who are driven for growth.