Any business, whether small or large, wants leads. After all, leads are potential customers. But not all leads are created equal. Just because someone is interested in your product or service doesn’t mean they’re a good fit for your business. That’s why qualifying your leads is important before you start selling to them. Not sure where to start?
Here are five ways to qualify your business leads.
1. Know Who Your Ideal Customer Is
The first step to qualifying your leads is understanding your ideal customer – you can use a lead management sales tool to create buyer personas. What does this person look like? What do they do for a living? What are their interests? Once you know your ideal customer, you can start qualifying your leads by identifying which ones fit that description.
Once you know your target customer, you can start tailoring your sales pitch and marketing materials to them. This will help you attract the right leads and weed out the ones that aren’t a good fit for your business. The ideal customer is:
- The one who will buy from you
- The one who will use your product or service as intended
- The one who is most likely to be satisfied with your product or service
- The one who will become a repeat customer or give referrals
2. Understand Their Problem
You should also understand the problem that your potential customer is trying to solve. What pain point are they trying to address? How does your product or service help them solve that problem? If you can’t answer these questions, then the lead probably isn’t qualified. To understand your target customer’s problems, consider this:
- What needs do they have that your product or service can address?
- What are their goals?
- What challenges are they facing that your product or service can help with?
Answering these questions will help you determine whether a lead is qualified and whether your product or service fits their needs. Otherwise, you’re just selling them something they don’t need.
3. Determine If They’re Ready to Buy
You also need to determine if the lead is ready to buy what you’re selling. There’s no use trying to sell a product or service to someone who isn’t ready to buy it—you’ll just end up wasting your time (and theirs). There are a few ways to determine if someone is ready to buy, including:
- Asking them directly
- Assessing their readiness by looking at their past purchasing behavior
- Evaluating their need for your product or service relative to other needs they have
They’re not ready to buy now, that’s okay—you can always follow up with them later. Just make sure you have a plan to keep track of unqualified leads, so you don’t forget about them. They’re the most likely to convert later on down the road.
4. See If They Fit Your Target Market
You should also ensure that the lead fits into your target market—in other words, they’re the type of person who would use (and benefit from) what you’re selling. For example, if you sell baby clothes, it wouldn’t make sense to try and sell them to somebody without any children as they wouldn’t need them, at least for now.
Identifying your target market is more than just knowing your ideal customer. The goal is to see if they fit your ideal customer profile. This means:
- Knowing who your target market is
- Knowing where they’re located
- Identifying other factors that play into whether someone is a good fit for your product or service
5. Assess Their Budget
Finally, you need to evaluate whether or not the lead can actually afford what you’re selling—i.e., whether it fits into their budget. It doesn’t matter how great your product or service is if the lead can’t afford it; they’ll never make a purchase. To assess their budget, you can again either ask directly or try and infer from past purchasing behavior across the competition.
Qualify Leads Before Moving Forward
The process of qualifying a lead is vital to the success of any business. By taking the time to qualify your leads, you can ensure that you are only pursuing those who are truly interested in what you have to offer. This saves time and resources in the long run and helps you close more deals.