At a Glance
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When it comes to the fast-paced world of business, lead response time is a critical factor in determining conversion rates. Remarkably, the average lead response time currently stands at a whopping 47 hours, with a mere 27% of leads being contacted at all. Speed to lead, or lead response time, is the time it takes for a business to follow up with a potential client after initial contact. This delay can cause potential clients to lose interest or even abandon the sale before a meaningful conversation can take place.
Ideal Lead Response Time
To achieve optimal results, businesses should respond to leads as rapidly as possible. According to this study, the ideal lead response time for phone calls is five minutes or less. If a business exceeds this timeframe, the chances of reaching the potential customer decrease by tenfold. They discovered that businesses that respond within the first hour are nearly seven times more likely to have a meaningful conversation with decision-makers. Failing to do so may result in missed opportunities.
6 Lead Response Time Statistics That May Surprise You
Here are six lead response time statistics that further emphasize the importance of a fast response time:
- Quick Responses Can Secure 50% of Sales: The initial vendors to respond to leads can win 35-50% of sales. Even a delay of just one minute beyond the five-minute mark can cause a business to lose a high-paying client. Not responding at all could lead to 30% of shoppers going straight to a competitor.
- Calling Under 30 Minutes is 21 Times More Effective: Calls received within five minutes are more likely to lead to real conversations, according to LeadSimple. However, letting 30 minutes or more elapse can significantly decrease a business’s chances of making a sale. Even calling after five minutes means leads are 10% less likely to respond.
- A 1-Minute Response Time Can Lead to 10x The Conversions: Responding within one minute can improve lead conversions by 391%, as reported by a Velocify survey. A two-minute response time offers less than half as much improvement at 160%.
- Consumers Expect Responses Within 10 Minutes: Most shoppers say that response times of 10 minutes or less are important, especially when it comes to sales. Consumers are even less patient when it comes to sales support than for customer service, making a low speed to lead crucial.
- 71% of Customers Have Made Purchases Based on Their Customer Service Experience: Customer experience is a significant factor in a shopper’s decision-making process when choosing between brands. A business’s lead response time can give potential clients the first impression of the brand experience. If a business isn’t readily available for support, it may lose the trust of the potential client.
- Slow Response Times Can Result in a 15% Churn: Not responding to leads in a timely manner can increase a business’s customer churn rate, which means fewer people will progress through the sales funnel, resulting in lost business opportunities.
So How Do You Increase Your Speed to Lead?
So, how can businesses improve their speed to lead? Here are five tips to help them do so:
- Use Sales CRMs to Manage Inbound Leads: Sales customer relationship management systems (sales CRMs) can directly support a business’s speed to lead by notifying them when a new contact is created, showing them who still needs a first response, and scoring leads so they can prioritize lead responses when faced with a high volume of new leads.
- Invest in Automation Tools: Businesses can send automated emails or texts to show their leads they got their message. Once a business gets a lead’s contact information, they can shoot a message that lets the lead know what to expect next, whether that’s a phone call within a number of minutes or a series of emails (which can be a fully automated drip campaign). Chatbots can also be helpful in answering basic questions and collecting contact information.
- Offer Live Sales Support: Live sales support provides the best wait times because there are no wait times. If a business can respond to leads in a matter of seconds with a live sales rep ready to chat, they can win over leads for good. Businesses can offer this through making their phone number readily available on their site, setting up a standard text-based live chat pop-up, or offering live video chat on-demand.
- Use Analytics to Schedule Your Sales Reps: Analyzing lead generation data will help a business identify the best days and times to keep more salespeople on hand. Hiring sales representatives specifically to improve a business’s lead response can further help.
- Track Speed to Lead Regularly: To improve lead responses, a business needs to know where they’re at. They should take a look at their response times at least weekly to make sure they’re up to par with their ideal speed to lead. Then, at least monthly, they should analyze how their response times are affecting their business metrics.
Increasing Your Sales Potential
The brands that respond to leads the quickest are the ones most likely to close the sale. To improve speed to lead, businesses should consider investing in tools like CRMs, chatbots, and live sales support software. Tracking lead generation data and response times will also help businesses consistently lower their speed to lead. With a live video chat tool on their website, businesses can impress potential clients by reducing their lead response times to mere seconds.