There’s always that dilemma when designing and working your sales funnel. Your pipeline can be artificially fat if you let everyone in without some criteria on who is worth talking to for a sales conversation.
On the other hand if you are too narrow in your qualification criteria, you can miss opportunities that a good salesperson could convert.
Qualification is something that can help throttle the sales funnel so you are efficient and giving your team the highest probability chances to engage with and convert sales prospects.
When designing how to set up your sales opportunity funnel, consider allowing your leads to self-qualify. You can use simple criteria such as the BANT (Budget, Authority, Need and Timing) method in your questions:
- What is your budget?
- Are you or someone else responsible for making a decision on this product?
- What is your need and how do you see our solution fitting?
- Are you planning on buying now? If not, then how long before you decide?
Based on the answers you get either in online forms, sales engagement chats or initial discussions, develop a handoff with your sales opportunities to the right closing conversation team member.
They would then be responsible for converting the sale or negotiating and following up with the qualified lead until a “Yes” or a “No” is the outcome.
Not everyone is ready or wanting to buy and your design of the qualification process can keep your sales resources allocated to talking to the right people at the right time. You don’t want to waste cycles talking to unqualified people in your funnel. Allow your nurturing and messaging to do the work of creating interest and extracting their qualification based on their need and timing.
If you look at how efficiently your sales team is working, are you using qualification to set them up with the most optimal sales conversations? Want a better sales strategy?