7 Sales Pipeline Stages in CRM That Make Your Small Business a Success

Oct 12, 2018 · 5 min read

For businesses of any size, distinct sales stages work wonders for avoiding last-minute chaos like:

  • messing up the clients deal
  • misplacing crucial client data
  • forgetting proper follow-up
  • sending the wrong quote to prospects
  • too much follow-up

Every company approaches their to-be-customers differently, based on their industry. However, a more non-deniable fact is that their sales process is not much dissimilar from each other.

  • A sales rep will identify new lead
  • follow-up and stay in touch
  • evaluate the lead/prospect
  • work towards closing the deal

Understanding and streamlining the sales stages inside your CRM pipeline is the first step of seamlessly moving the customers through sales funnel.

Sales pipeline stages in CRM

B2C and B2B sales differ from each other and today we will be focusing more on B2B sales stages that make the most revenue for your business; keeping you ahead of the game. Sales pipeline funnel can be broken down into four major parts:

  • Awareness
  • Consideration
  • Intent
  • Decision Making

We are going to dig deeper into the seven core sales pipeline stages that will benefit your business and bring the required success ratio!

Sales funnel helps marketing and sales professionals understand the buyer’s journey from awareness to final decision making.

1. Prospecting

  • Sales reps carry out their preliminary research in the prospecting stage. In this stage, it is crucial to round up the target base that perfectly fits the buyer persona of your solution.
  • Prospecting generally involves a list of people that need to be filtered out and moved along into the various stages of your CRM pipeline.

2. Securing lead

  • Prospects come first in the sales funnel but officially leads come early in the CRM pipeline.
  • While securing lead stage, the list of people gets vetted down and the probable list of buyers is generated as ready to be contacted by your sales representatives.

3. Pitching your solution

  • The contact is made with the lead, and you have scheduled a meeting.
  • This meeting will help you decide if the customers are considering making a purchase from you or not.
  • In this stage, you will be discussing their requirements and make sure if the company’s offering will help the client to meet their needs.
  • With a CRM that provides calendar functionality or integrates and syncs your email, you can be assured not to forget any such meetings.

4. Qualifying deals

  • After the discussion of their requirements, you will be qualifying the leads into your CRM pipeline.
  • Now, you will set up one more meeting to finalize the details of how your solution is going to make an impact on their business.
  • Depending on your industry you can add more stages to your CRM pipeline for additional meetings or presentations.

5. Sending proposal

  • Once the features set required by the client gets finalized, you will be sending over the proposal.
  • This stage defines the general client list from those who are on the verge of closure.
  • Also, you must set timelines and reminders in this stage for following-up with the client at a reasonable time interval for finalization.

6. Negotiation over the deal

  • Getting approval on your first proposal will occur in the rarest of cases.
  • Negotiating the deal takes a lot of soft skill mixed with the will to convince the client that your services are worth the amount of investment they are making.
  • Having this stage inside your sales CRM helps your sales team understand which deals need a bit more attention and time or which ones have hit the stagnancy after the initial proposal was sent.

7. Closure

  • Once the deal gets finalized, it will get moved to the closure stage.
  • You have won the deal! And now after signing the contract, you will start the on-boarding process of your client.
  • However, not every day is filled with sunshine, and you may lose some of the deals.
  • Keep track of the lost deals too.
  • Analyze the trends hidden inside these lost deals and make sure that the next time around you turn the table and win it.

Important sales process takeaways

We hope that this portion has been able to impart the importance of having these seven sales pipeline stages in your CRM. You must now start leaving out the unnecessary steps from your sales stages and divert your focus towards your customers.

Bring your business closer to the customer base and instead of selling your solution, understand the problems the customers face.

— Identifying customer problems

You want to share your offering with the customers in the market, but how? Researching and looking for the businesses who face issues that are related to your area of expertise will help you find the potential customer base.

— Developing an apt solution

You now have the customer base and know what problems they are facing. Customize your solution to fit your solution into their business equation.

— Staying in touch

Set up a calendar for following up with your potential, present, and past customers.

Using a smart sales CRM system, you can create and organize your follow-ups and synchronize them with your smart devices to stay up-to-date with upcoming activities.

A sales CRM also allows you to track your:

  • Sales calls
  • Sales and marketing emails
  • Scheduled meetings and calls
  • Proposals and follow-ups

The seven steps of your sales pipeline do not end after you close a deal. After-sale services also allow you to gain client referrals and testimonials that help attract new customers.

In brief

Customer loyalty is a big word! It needs a lot of work on the part of businesses. These seven sales pipeline stages seem simple, but you and your sales team need to be persistent while pursuing the prospect list. Keeping your customer base engaged with your latest offerings, discounts or updates allows you to maintain a steady relationship. It also enables to make them your source of lead generation! From lead generation to post-sales services, each step is critical to the success of your selling process. A successful sales pipeline helps businesses convert their best customers into consultants and generate more leads.

Using Salesmate CRM, businesses of various sizes have seen the change in their sales pipeline. Salesmate is tailor-made to suit the needs of today’s smart, young and always on-the-move business scenario.

Salesmate offers tonnes of productive features to get you started in the competitive business scenario and supports you through the cycle to keep you on the profitable side. In case you want to gather more information on how your business can benefit from Salesmate CRM, get in touch with our team and we will help you out!


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A truly intelligent sales CRM for smart sales force! https://www.salesmate.io/

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