Qualifying a Sales Opportunity

8 Min

Not every prospect will become a customer.

Use a system to qualify yours.

In Stage Two of the Sandler Selling System, we qualify the opportunity.

The three steps of qualifying the opportunity:

1. Pain

According to a study from Impact Communications, Inc., 70% of purchases are made to solve a specific problem. People tend to buy for their own reasons, not for yours. As the salesperson, it’s your task to discover that problem, or pain, and find out if you can help them.

2. Budget

It’s important to talk money, time, and resources early. In this step, you’ll find out: is the prospect able to spend these resources to fix their pain, and will they do it with you? Some prospects won’t have the budget or are simply shopping around for the lowest price.

3. Decision

A decision is rarely one single action. Find out your prospect’s decision-making process. Ask: Can this person make the decision to buy? Who else needs to be involved, and what’s their timeline?

Time for a quiz.

Sandra is a sales representative at a medical equipment company. In a recent conversation, she quickly discovered her prospect’s pain: their blood testing equipment runs far too slow. The prospect is extremely interested in her equipment, and wants to move forward. What should Sandra determine next?

Quiz 1 of 1

Sandra uncovered her prospect's pain. What should she determine next?

a
Whether the prospect is ready to move forward with closing the sale.
b
Whether the prospect needs to see more features and benefits.
c
Whether the prospect feels like they can personally trust Sandra.
d
Whether the prospect has sufficient budget for her equipment.

The correct answer is D.

Once Sandra understands her prospect’s pain, she should make sure that they have sufficient budget to close the sale.

If you’ve discovered the prospect’s pain, budget, and

decision-making process, and the opportunity doesn’t measure updisqualify it, and move on.

Consider this:

Have you ever been completely blindsided by a prospect who didn't have the budget or who involved new stakeholders? How would qualifying the prospect have prevented this?

Lesson complete