What Is BANT and How Can You Use it to Qualify Prospects?

Qualifying prospects is a crucial step within the gross sales course of. It retains you from spending time on alternatives which can be unlikely to transform. And helps you identify the place it is best to prioritize your efforts.

It’s simpler mentioned than finished, after all. So how do you qualify leads? How do you identify if a prospect is an effective match on your services or products?

Utilizing a gross sales qualification framework like BANT might help.

On this information, we’ll describe the BANT framework, together with what it’s and the right way to decide if it’s proper on your crew. We’ll additionally make clear how one can implement this framework and supply a listing of gross sales qualifying questions which you can ask.

What’s BANT?

BANT is a gross sales qualification framework that was initially developed by IBM. It helps gross sales groups qualify prospects and decide if they’ve a excessive probability of changing.

BANT is an acronym for:

  • Finances: What’s the prospect’s finances? 
  • Authority: Have they got decision-making authority?
  • Wants: What are their enterprise wants?
  • Timeline: When are they seeking to make a purchase order?

A prospect is taken into account viable in the event that they meet at the least three of the 4 standards. Nonetheless, if a prospect doesn’t meet the factors, the gross sales rep can observe up later.

What makes the BANT gross sales qualification framework distinctive?

There are solely so many hours within the day, which is why you need your gross sales crew to deal with essentially the most promising alternatives. This can assist enhance win charges and generate extra gross sales

Right here’s how the totally different elements of the BANT framework assist with gross sales qualification.

Finances: Can they afford your answer?

Cash is a vital think about any buying determination. If one thing is outdoors your finances, it’s important to both forego it altogether or think about different choices. The identical is true on your prospects.

A prospect must have the out there finances to be thought-about a purchaser. If they will’t afford your answer, they’re seemingly not a superb match. By speaking about pricing early on, a gross sales rep can decide whether or not to maneuver on from a lead.

However don’t soar the gun too quickly. 

A prospect might not have the finances now, however their circumstances might change. Likewise, in the event you can justify the worth of your answer, you’ll be able to overcome pricing objections and persuade your prospects to purchase.

Authority: Are they a decision-maker?

Buying choices usually contain a number of stakeholders — some are gatekeepers who’re merely passing alongside data, whereas others have the ultimate say.

Studying extra about your prospects might help you identify if they’ve the authority to proceed with the subsequent steps or if it is advisable get others concerned. 

Even when a prospect isn’t a decision-maker, they seemingly have some affect throughout the group, so don’t make them really feel undervalued. Construct belief along with your level of contact, and you may even flip them into advocates on your firm.

Wants: Does your answer tackle their wants?

The subsequent step within the BANT framework is to grasp your prospects’ wants. What challenges are they going through, and does your answer remedy them? 

If not, you’d disqualify a prospect and transfer on. It’s higher to prioritize those that have an precise want on your answer as a result of they’re extra more likely to derive worth from it and switch into lifelong clients.

Timeline: When do they plan to make a purchase order?

The final BANT element is the timeline. 

Prospects eager on making a purchase order quickly, have a better sense of urgency. By prioritizing these leads, you’ll be able to pace up the gross sales cycle and shut extra offers.

Is the BANT gross sales qualification framework proper on your crew?

BANT is a well-liked qualification framework, however what works for one firm might not work for one more. Weighing its execs and cons might help you identify if it’s a superb match on your gross sales crew.

Let’s begin with the advantages of the BANT framework.

Professionals of utilizing BANT

One of many main advantages of the BANT framework is which you can apply it to totally different purchaser personas. You’ll be able to simply modify the questions and relate to the individual you’re talking to.

BANT can also be a versatile qualification framework. Whether or not you’re the top of gross sales for a Software program-as-a-Service (SaaS) startup or an enterprise, you’ll be able to adapt the framework and proceed to refine it over time.

Lastly, following the BANT framework helps preserve your crew on the identical web page. This ensures your crew follows the identical requirements when qualifying alternatives.

Cons of utilizing BANT

BANT was created within the Nineteen Sixties, so it’s not precisely fashionable. Whereas the basics are nonetheless intact, this decades-old framework falls quick in some areas. 

Take the finances standards, as an illustration. Disqualifying a prospect as a result of they’re not prepared to purchase quickly might trigger you to lose the deal if their circumstances change (e.g., they obtain funding). 

One other downside is that BANT is extra seller-centric. Gross sales reps aren’t constructing relationships or offering worth. They’re making an attempt to find out whether or not a lead is value pursuing, however this may be off-putting relying on how the questions are requested.

Whether or not you select to implement the BANT framework to qualify prospects is as much as you. Nevertheless it does supply a confirmed methodology for figuring out high quality prospects.

use the BANT framework to qualify prospects (with questions)

Observe the steps under to implement the BANT gross sales qualification framework. We’ve additionally included gross sales qualification questions it is best to ask to shortly establish which prospects meet your standards.

1. Create an Supreme Buyer Profile (ICP)

Not each prospect is the proper match on your firm. So how can you make sure that your reps are spending time on alternatives which can be extra more likely to shut? 

That is the place an Supreme Buyer Profile is available in — an outline of the kind of firm that may profit essentially the most out of your services or products. It aligns your gross sales and advertising and marketing groups and ensures that you simply’re focusing on the correct prospects.

Graphic of an ideal customer profile

Step one when creating an ICP is to establish your greatest clients. Look by means of your CRM, gross sales intelligence platform, or no matter else you employ to assemble this knowledge. You’re in search of high-value clients who’ve been along with your firm a very long time.

Take a look at the listing you created and establish frequent attributes. Contemplate the next attributes to slim down your excellent buyer:

  • Business/vertical
  • Firm measurement
  • Annual income
  • Worker rely
  • Geographic location
  • Key challenges
  • Know-how stack

This listing shouldn’t be exhaustive by any means, nevertheless it does supply a terrific start line. If a prospect doesn’t suit your ICP, think about disqualifying them.

2. Decide your prospect’s finances

The primary BANT criterion is finances. 

Understanding how a lot your prospects can spend is essential to qualifying them. It additionally helps you correctly scope a challenge and handle expectations early on.

Nonetheless, discussing pricing might be tough. Asking prospects what their finances is instantly can scare them away as a result of it comes off as aggressive. Nonetheless, the longer you wait to debate pricing, your probabilities of closing the deal cut back considerably.

So when do you have to ask your prospects about their finances? Knowledge from our income intelligence platform exhibits that win charges are 10% larger when pricing is mentioned on the primary name.

Impact of discussing pricing on win rates

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However timing issues right here.

You don’t wish to begin a gross sales name with a finances query and push your prospects away earlier than you could have an opportunity to construct a relationship with them.

We discovered that the highest reps talk about pricing about 38 to 46 minutes right into a name, whereas common reps convey up pricing a lot earlier.

When top reps discuss pricing in a call

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When you construct a relationship along with your prospect and get them to see the worth of your supply, you’ll be able to ask finances questions like:

  • What sort of finances can we count on to work with?
  • How a lot do you at the moment spend on this downside?
  • Have you ever tried different options? How a lot did they value?
  • What sort of ROI are you hoping to see?

These kinds of questions assist you gauge how critical your prospect is about shopping for and whether or not they have the means to. 

3. Establish key decision-makers

The second BANT criterion is authority. 

Ideally, you wish to work straight with decision-makers or, on the very least, somebody who has a powerful say within the ultimate buying determination. 

Choice-makers are sometimes a part of the C-suite or top-level administration. They’ve the facility to maneuver offers ahead. If a prospect doesn’t have the authority to approve purchases, your subsequent precedence is to establish and join with a decision-maker.

Primarily based on knowledge from over 9,000 alternatives, we found that offers that didn’t contain a decision-maker had been 80% much less more likely to shut.

Win rates when decision makers aren't involved in a deal

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The distinction was much more pronounced for enterprise offers with a gross sales cycle longer than 90 days and valued at over $100,000. These had been 233% much less more likely to shut when a decision-maker wasn’t concerned.

Listed below are authority-based questions you’ll be able to ask:

  • Who will probably be utilizing our answer?
  • What steps are concerned in approving a purchase order like this?
  • What was the decision-making course of like final time?
  • Do we have to invite anybody else to our subsequent name?

Asking these questions might help you identify if a prospect is a decision-maker or if it is advisable get others concerned.

4. Pinpoint your prospect’s ache factors

The third BANT criterion is, want.

Studying your prospects’ wants will assist you decide in the event that they’re a superb match. It’ll additionally assist you tailor your gross sales pitch and place your services or products as the answer.

For instance, let’s say you supply an inside communication instrument. 

A rep learns {that a} prospect struggles with preserving their crew on the identical web page. Vital communications are sometimes missed, affecting deadlines and leading to sad clients.

If a rep determines that this prospect is an effective match, they will place their software program as the answer by emphasizing the way it can preserve communications centralized and arranged.

The important thing to uncovering your prospects’ ache factors is to ask open-ended questions. The “candy spot” for what number of gross sales questions it is best to ask on a name is 11 to 14.

How many sales questions to ask per call

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Asking too many questions could make it sound like an interrogation whereas asking too few could make it laborious to unearth sufficient ache factors. 

Listed below are examples which you can ask to uncover ache factors:

  • What challenges are you at the moment going through?
  • What steps have you ever taken to handle this downside?
  • How vital is addressing this downside?
  • What’s going to occur in the event you don’t remedy this downside?

Asking these questions gives you extra details about your prospects and the extent of their issues. It’ll additionally assist you decide in the event you can really meet these expectations.

5. Know your prospect’s buying timeline

The fourth BANT criterion is the timeline.

And not using a clear timeline, you run the danger of an extended gross sales course of. Realizing when your prospect plans to purchase will assist you handle expectations and plan your gross sales pipeline.

Earlier than asking your prospects about their timeline, take a look at the typical size of your gross sales cycle first. This can rely upon elements like your trade, enterprise mannequin, and pricing. 

For instance, a product that prices $10 a month could have a sooner gross sales cycle than a product that prices $1,000 a month. The latter will seemingly contain a number of stakeholders, which may lengthen the gross sales cycle by months and even longer.

As per HubSpot, the typical gross sales cycle size for a SaaS product with an annual contract worth (ACV) of $5,000 or much less is 40 days. Nonetheless, it will increase to 170 days when the ACV is upwards of $100,000.

If a prospect has a buying timeline that falls at or under the typical size of your gross sales cycle, they might be a terrific alternative. 

Ask these inquiries to get an thought of your prospect’s timeline:

  • When are you seeking to implement an answer?
  • Does this buy have any time constraints?
  • Are there any upcoming occasions that you simply want this answer for?
  • Do you could have any contracts or commitments for the same answer?

If a prospect has a buying timeline that exceeds your common gross sales cycle, you’ll be able to both disqualify them or observe up at a later date.

6. Qualify your prospects and talk about the subsequent steps

Should you’ve adopted the BANT framework up thus far, it is best to have all the pieces it is advisable decide which prospects to push into your pipeline.

Keep deal momentum by discussing “subsequent steps” on the finish of a name or assembly. Examples can embrace scheduling one other name or organising a gross sales demo. When prospects decide to an motion, they’re extra more likely to observe by means of.

In line with our knowledge, win charges are considerably larger when reps talk about the subsequent steps. It additionally results in a shorter gross sales cycle.

How discussing next steps impacts win rates

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Spend time setting and confirming the subsequent steps along with your prospects. This can rely upon the place you’re of their shopping for course of. For instance, in the event you’ve completed an introductory gross sales assembly, the subsequent logical step is to arrange a demo. On the finish of a name, you would possibly ask one thing like:

“I’m excited to point out you ways [feature] might help remedy [pain point]. Would you prefer to go forward and schedule a demo now?”

All the time ensure to substantiate the subsequent steps to maintain the deal transferring. The very last thing you need is to have a misunderstanding derail a possible deal.

BANT vs. MEDDIC: What’s the distinction?

Whereas BANT is among the extra well-established frameworks, it’s removed from the one one. MEDDIC is one other common framework that gross sales groups use to qualify alternatives.

MEDDIC is an acronym that stands for:

  • Metrics: Determine the metrics or quantifiable objectives that matter on your prospects.
  • Financial purchaser: Decide who has the authority to make choices.
  • Choice standards: Be taught what elements your prospects use to judge purchases.
  • Choice course of: Perceive the steps that prospects observe to finalize a purchase order.
  • Establish ache: Uncover the ache factors or challenges that your prospects are going through.
  • Champion: Discover somebody who can act as an advocate on your firm.

Should you promote a services or products with a brief gross sales cycle, the MEDDIC framework could be overkill. Prospects received’t have the persistence to take a seat by means of the road of questioning required to study their processes. BANT could be higher on this case.

Nonetheless, in the event you supply technical or advanced merchandise with longer gross sales cycles, think about implementing the MEDDIC framework. However ensure to get our 26 MEDDIC questions first and study the precise questions you’ll be able to ask to establish promising prospects.

Get our gross sales qualifying questions and enhance your win charges

One of many greatest challenges that reps face is figuring out the correct prospects. With out correctly qualifying them, the reps danger spending useful time on prospects who’re unlikely to transform.

So how do you make sure that your crew is specializing in the correct patrons?

By asking the correct questions.

Click on right here to obtain our gross sales qualifying questions. You’ll get a listing of qualification questions that cowl the whole shopping for journey. It’s 100% free.

Prepared for some BANTer?

To shortly recap, BANT includes qualifying prospects based mostly on 4 standards: Finances, Authority, Want, and Timeline. A prospect solely wants to fulfill three of them to be thought-about validated.

In fact, when you qualify a prospect, your job isn’t over but. You’ll want a technique to handle your pipeline if you wish to shut extra offers and to try this, you’ll want the correct instruments.

Request a demo to see how Gong’s gross sales software program helps you acquire full visibility into your pipeline and unlock extra income.

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