Pipedrive Lead Distribution — The 6 Step Guide

Why It Matters

There’s nothing worse for a buyer than requesting an online quote only to receive a response days later when the buyer no longer needs one. Most buyers will not wait around to hear back from you, but will click over to the website of your closest competitor and take their business elsewhere. Not only is a slow response time bad for the prospect, it’s bad for your business.

When someone puts in an online inquiry, it is absolutely critical that they receive a response as soon as possible. More likely than not, they’re shopping around with multiple sites at once, and the first person to respond is the one who’ll get the job. According to the Harvard Business Review, “The conversion rate of an online lead reduces by 7 times 1 hour after sign-up”.

“The conversion rate of an online lead reduces by 7 times 1 hour after sign-up”. — Harvard Business Review

This is absolute proof that a speedy response time is the best way to convert a prospect. While you may not always be able to beat the competition in terms of price, it is always within your power to beat them in terms of speed. A speedy response also tells the customer that you take their business seriously, giving them an assurance that you’ll be there to provide excellent and rapid customer service at every step of the process (especially after the sale). Check out this video about ‘Moments that matter’ why how it impacts sales 👉 here.

In an ideal world, every prospect would receive a rapid response. However, with the high amount of prospective leads that contact your business, responding to each and every one of them within 15 minutes is nearly impossible. And even if an employee was designated solely to respond to customer leads, it would be a waste of resources and money for your company. To achieve a rapid response time to your most urgent leads without expending too many resources, you’ll have to categorize them into two lanes: Fast and Slow lane.

Fast vs. Slow Lane

There are two types of leads that interact with a business: urgent and non-urgent. To achieve a rapid response time for the hottest prospects without over hiring, you’ll need to separate them into two separate lanes: urgent into a fast lane, and non-urgent into a slow lane. This allows you to follow up quickly with the customers who need a quick response while still making time for your less urgent customers. But what separates the urgent from the non-urgent?

Urgent leads are any leads that are actively seeking a response. They’re the prospects most likely to be checking out multiple businesses at once, and responding quickly to them will make them more likely to choose your business. Here’s a couple of buckets:

  • If someone requests a quote or a demo on your website, they’re an active lead.
  • If you’ve purchased the lead from a lead provider such as Zillow, this is also an urgent lead. These leads have been sold to multiple businesses, making a rapid response your best chance at standing out among the fray.
  • Any leads from paid advertising are also considered urgent, as they’re probably looking at other sellers online.. A rapid response ensures that you get to them before they’ve clicked on something else.

Non-urgent leads include users who download ebooks or watch demo videos on your website. While you want to touch base with them eventually, they’re much less likely to be in immediate need of assistance. Following up with them one or two days later also allows them time to digest your content. Getting lead distribution in Pipedrive right is all about prioritizing some leads over others, and in the case of non-urgent leads a slower response gives your customers extra time to read over the content they have downloaded.

If you effectively split up your leads into fast and slow lanes, you’ll be able to respond quickly to the most urgent leads while working the non-urgent leads into your schedule at a later time. Most importantly you won’t be over-hiring and the prospects has an amazing experience (which improves your conversion rate!).

Pipedrive Lead Distribution — How to Build It

How do you apply all of this to your business? You can take this information you’ve learned and walk your team through the importance of rapid response. If you properly implement this new strategy for handling lead responses, your team will be better prepared to effectively handle lead distribution in Pipedrive. The more efficient your team is at responding to urgent leads, the more your business will grow.

We’ll go over everything you need to know about how to optimize lead distribution in Pipedrive so that you can improve your lead response time and win more business. You’ll need to look at several different factors that impact your team’s ability to respond to leads, as well as how to differentiate and tag your fast/slow response leads. These are the factors you’ll want to keep in mind to coach your team through this change:

1 - Your Team’s Availability

You’ll want to start with the availability of your team. The first thing you should ask is, “What are the work hours of my sales team?” Maybe some of your team members are only available after school, or perhaps some members have kids and thus can only work half days. You’ll have to work around everyone’s schedule to ensure that there is always someone who can respond during peak hours when leads come in.

If no one is available to respond, the response time will blow out and you’ll lose the sale. The next salesperson could come on hours later or even the next day, and by then it’s too late (leads gone to your competition). These mistakes aren’t the fault of either the sales rep or the team, but simply a calendar issue. Making sure that you have team availability that maps to lead-flow hours is essential.

Figure out when you have the most leads coming in. Ask yourself, “Do I have enough people online at that time?” If you don’t, rework the schedule accordingly to accommodate. Depending on your sales team, it’s always good to have a backup. Having extra people lined up during peak times ensures that someone will be there to respond in case of illness or personal emergency. You don’t want to lose the ability to quickly respond to leads, so make sure your team’s availability lines up with the times when the most leads come in.

2 - Define Your Fast/Slow Response Leads

The easiest way of differentiating between urgent and non-urgent leads is by identifying the source of the lead. Maybe you’ve paid for some Facebook ads or Google ads, or you’ve invested in SEO. Perhaps a customer is downloading an ebook, or they press “buy now” or request a quote. Whatever the source is, you’ll want to ask the question: “If I don’t respond within the next 15 minutes to an hour, will the lead go to a competitor?” If the answer is yes, it’s an urgent lead.

Take for example, someone with a burst pipe. If their house is flooding and they need an emergency plumber, they’re going to call 3-5 plumbers in the area until they get a response. The first person to respond is going to get the job. When the customer’s need is that urgent, they’re not going to be so concerned about who costs more than whom. They’re going to choose the business with the quickest response time that can solve their issue.

Conversely, if someone downloads something like an eBook about installing a solar water heater, for example, they’re probably not in urgent need of a response. They’re most likely just educating themselves about a product rather than looking for an immediate quote. Look at all of your leads and define which is urgent/non-urgent. After all, you can’t (and shouldn’t) provide everyone with a fast response, as that would be a waste of resources and manpower.

3 - Tag Your Fast/Slow Response Leads

Once you’ve figured out which leads require a fast response and which require a slow one, you’ll want to identify them in the system. There are two options for tagging your leads:

  • The first would be by creating a custom Deal field in Pipedrive labeled “Rapid Response” where you have a yes/no option that you can select based on whether or not they’re an urgent lead. When you pipe leads in through Zapier or LeadsBridge, you can automatically tag each lead with whether or not you need a rapid response.
  • The other option is to create another staging pipeline. You can label one pipeline “Lead in (urgent)” and label the other “Lead in (not urgent)”. Then, every time you get a new lead, you can put the two leads in those stages based on your criteria above.

4 - Fast/Slow Lead Distribution in Pipedrive

For slow lane responses, you can distribute those pretty much however you like. Doing a simple round robin based on who’s available today is perfect for non-urgent leads. With the slow lane, you get to it when you get to it. The salesperson can do an hour a day, making sure to get to it when they have quiet time.

For fast lane responses, look at turning on SMS notifications for the sales rep after 7 minutes has passed without them doing anything. That way, if they aren’t at their desk or they happen to be at lunch, they will get an SMS and can call the lead back right away. This ensures that the lead doesn’t go without a response. Be thoughtful with SMS messaging, making sure not to overload the sales rep with leads. But when they get it, they have to get on it quick!

Another thing that will improve response is Lead escalation. If nothing happens 7 minutes after the SMS is sent, then wait another 7min and if no action then reassign it to another sales rep. Continue to escalate the lead to other salespeople people if no response is received until someone responds. You don’t want leads waiting because everyone is at lunch or someone stepped away from their desk. That’s just money down the drain. SMS plus escalation is the silver bullet, the secret to rapid response to fast lane leads.

5 - Measure And Coach On Response Speed

Measure the response time for every response to every lead. This will help you to see how long it took the sales person to respond to the lead and figure out where/if you need to make improvements. This response time is also known as “claim time”, which tells you how long it took for them to click the link and claim it, or to move the stage and do some work on it. This is a really key metric to be tracking.

You’ll also want to track when your leads are coming in. RouterJet tells you when leads come in during ‘offline hours’ when no one’s online. Knowing the peak times of leads coming in helps you plan your team’s availability. If you see a ton of offline assignment, you’ll need to rethink the team’s calendar. Offline assignment should always be kept to a minimum, or else you’ll end up with a bunch of cold leads and missed business. If lead demand and hours have changed, you have to update it to match that.

6 - Create A Culture Of Speed

Create a culture of speed by sitting down with your team and talking to them about the importance of rapid response time. You can mention statistics like the one from the Harvard Business Review, or telling them common sense examples like the one with the busted pipes and the plumber. The important thing is to let them walk through what the experience would be like in their own life. This allows them to see how they would feel if they got a slow response when buying something online.

Speed is achieved when excellent systems and team attitude combine.

If they don’t get it, you may want to reassign them. The team needs to be on the same page with rapid response and lead generation, otherwise your business won’t grow and you’ll hemorrhage customers to the competition. Help them walk through why you’re doing this and why they need to respond quickly. Make it clear to them why they’ll win if they prioritize rapid lead response. The faster your team responds to the leads the more likely you are to significantly convert and win more business. This is good for everyone! But the most important thing is sitting down and talking about the change, implementing it, and then holding them accountable to it.

Well that’s the theory…the good news is 80% of this change can be achieved with system improvements (i.e. not re-training the sales team). Either way change is tough, especially when you’re team is focused on hitting a quarterly goal, so feel free to reach out to us hello@routerjet.com if you have any questions. We geek out Pipedrive Lead Distribution all day long :)


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