Stop Saying “I don’t know”…it is Killing Your Sales!

A few months ago my wife and I were doing some grocery shopping. We were looking for Quinoa and couldn’t find it anywhere. Quinoa isn’t something that we had really shopped for in the past and we didn’t know much about it. We finally flagged down an employee of the store and asked if he could direct us to the Quinoa. His response was, “I don’t know where it is. I am on break and can help you in 15 minutes.”

I couldn’t believe the employee’s response! I was upset and discouraged. I told my wife that, moving forward, we would try to avoid that grocery store.

Surprisingly enough, salespeople say “I don’t know” to potential customers all the time. Quickly think about the times that people have told you “I don’t know” after you raise a legitimate question or concern. When you hear those words does your motivation to make a decision or continue the conversation increase? I don’t think so!


You can quickly and easily take the words “I don’t know” out of your vocabulary. Try using these sentences as a replacement:

That is a great question.  I am not sure.  Let me find out quickly for you.  While I find out, why don’t you sit down on this sofa and I will get you a drink.

Or you could say…

I haven’t been asked that before.  Great question.  Let me figure out a good answer for you.  Give me just a minute.

Your customers will quickly see that you are a valuable resource and want to be of service. Not knowing an answer isn’t a weakness, it is just another opportunity to show your value and your helpfulness to customers.

So, stop saying “I don’t know”. You will quickly see a difference in your sales and how you feel during interactions with customers. You can learn more helpful selling skills on our website,

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