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Lead Routing: The Missing Piece in Your Sales Strategy

Looking for ways to boost sales productivity? Explore how automated lead routing can streamline your sales process and significantly improve your success rate.

Think about the last time a potential customer filled out a form on your website. They were interested and took the first step, but what happens next? Often, the answer is that they wait. And while they wait, their interest starts to fade. They might even start looking at what your competitors offer.

Automated lead routing eliminates this waiting game from the equation. When a lead comes in, this system ensures the lead goes straight to the right person on your Sales team. As a result, your Sales Reps can engage with leads faster, nurture them more effectively, and, ultimately, drive better results.

Ready to speed up your sales game? Consider using lead routing to keep your leads engaged and moving smoothly through your sales funnel. Here’s how.

The basics of automated lead routing

Lead routing is all about deciding who in your Sales team talks to a potential customer when they show interest. Usually, this happens when someone fills out a form on your website. In the past, lead allocation was done manually. Sales managers would just assign leads to an available sales rep. But this method didn’t always consider which sales rep would best serve each customer’s needs.

Automated lead distribution systems improve the allocation process by picking the right salesperson for each lead. These systems use criteria such as the customer’s interests, needs, and location to manage and assign inbound leads. This ensures that customers are put in touch with someone who has deep knowledge about their query.

Here’s an example. Let’s say a customer asks about a specific product on your site. The automated system sees this and sends their question to a salesperson who knows a lot about that product. This way, customers get faster and better answers, increasing the likelihood of closing the deal.

Advantages of automatically routing leads

Using automatic systems to route leads to sales teams makes the sales process smoother and more successful. Here are some of the main advantages:

  • Faster contact with leads: With automatic routing, leads get assigned to sales reps more quickly. This means your team can start talking to potential customers sooner, preventing them from losing interest or turning to competitors.
  • Better match between leads and sales reps: The system automatically sends leads to the sales reps who are best suited to handling them. This increases the chances that a lead will turn into a sale.
  • Less work sorting leads: By automatically assigning leads, the amount of manual work is reduced. This saves time and reduces mistakes that can happen when sales teams have to do this task by hand.
  • Consistent customer experience: Automated lead assignment ensures that leads always go to suitable sales reps. This means customers consistently get good service and expertise, which can increase satisfaction levels and brand loyalty.
  • Excellent scalability: As your business grows and gets more leads, it’s hard to manage them all by hand. An automatic system can handle more and more leads easily, making it a great choice for a company of any size.

In short, automating how leads get sent to sales teams makes the whole process more organized, efficient, and effective. It helps your Sales team do their best in nurturing leads, leading to happier customers and steady business growth.

Automated lead routing systems work hand in hand with customer relationship management (CRM) platforms. They connect using special links called APIs. These APIs act like bridges, letting the routing software access and use the CRM’s data.

Lead scoring is a big part of what these systems do. This process starts with looking at customer data stored in the CRM. The data can include things like the customer’s company, their industry, and their interactions with your website.

Based on all this data, the CRM system assigns a score to each lead using a numerical point system. The lead score helps determine how interested the customer might be in your products or services. The higher the score, the more likely the customer is to make a purchase. This helps sales reps focus their attention where it is most likely to result in a sale.

The lead score is just one way to route customers to sales reps. The lead routing system also considers other important factors to ensure a good match. These factors can include reps’ industry expertise, their past performance with similar leads, and the geographic area they cover.

Eight effective lead routing criteria options

Lead routing systems help you pair potential customers with the most suitable sales reps using specific criteria. In the fast-paced world of sales, making these matches at the right time can be a game changer. Consider using the following sales lead assignment rules to give your team the edge they need.  

Lead score

Lead score routing uses the CRM’s lead scoring system results to assign potential clients to the right people on your Sales team. The leads with the highest scores go to the best sales reps who know how to close deals.

Meanwhile, lower-scoring leads land in front of salespeople who are good at building relationships with customers over time. While they might not be ready to buy right away, the leads still hold potential for future sales. This method ensures excellent lead management, maximizing the chances of sales success across the board.


Deal value routing makes your high-value leads a top priority. When a lead looks like it could bring in a lot of money, the system sends it to your most experienced sales pros. They are experts in closing deals with high-potential customers.

The smaller leads? They go to the newer reps who are still learning the ropes. This way, everyone gets matched with the right kind of leads, and the big opportunities get the attention they deserve.  


Interest-based routing pairs incoming leads with reps who have in-depth product knowledge. The process starts with the CRM system noticing when a website visitor shows interest in a product. The lead routing system then sends the most interested leads to sales reps who are experts in that area.   

For instance, if someone downloads your e-book about data security threats, they get connected with a rep who specializes in cybersecurity. This ensures the potential customer gets info and guidance from a salesperson who understands their area of interest.


Availability routing distributes leads to sales reps who are free and can answer right away. When a customer shows interest, the system quickly finds a rep who isn’t busy. That rep then talks to the customer immediately, ensuring they don’t have to wait for a response.

A quick lead response time can make customers happy and more likely to buy something. Also, it’s good for sales reps because it spreads out the work. No one gets too many customers at once, so they can take their time with each one.

Geographic location

Geographic location routing matches customers with salespeople in the same time zone. This is particularly helpful if you have brick-and-mortar stores in various locations or need to provide localized services.

For example, if your company offers home services, it’s practical to connect customers with a nearby sales rep. This approach speeds up the sales process and is often relatively cost-effective, as it reduces the need for travel.

Sales rep experience

Sales rep experience routing strategically assigns leads to salespeople based on their experience level. When set to this routing option, the system pairs seasoned sales reps with more complex leads. These salespeople know how to navigate tricky sales conversations and manage bigger deals effectively.

Newer sales reps receive leads with less complex needs. This allows junior reps to grow their skills without the pressure of high-stakes deals. Customers also benefit by getting the attention they need from someone who is best equipped to help them.

Customer type

Customer type routing means sending leads to sales reps based on what kind of customer they are. If they’re individual consumers buying for themselves, they get a salesperson who’s good at helping people one-on-one.

On the other hand, if the lead’s organization is a small business, they can talk to a rep who knows about their unique needs, like reducing overhead costs and growing their company. This routing strategy ensures a more effective and targeted sales approach.

Lead source

Lead source routing directs potential customers to reps depending on where the leads came from. This approach recognizes that leads from different sources often have varying needs and expectations.

For example, if someone learns about a product from a targeted lead generation campaign, they might already know a lot about it. So, they need a sales rep who can give more detailed information. But if someone just called about a product without knowing much, they need a salesperson who’s good at explaining things from the start.  

Lead routing best practices for marketing and sales teams

Having a good system for lead routing can make a big difference for sales and marketing teams. By taking the right approach, you can ensure potential customers quickly connect to the right salesperson. To do this well, here are some lead routing best practices.

Keep lead routing rules as simple as possible

Keep all your lead assignment rules clear and straightforward. If the rules are too complicated, they can confuse everyone and slow things down. Simple rules mean everyone knows what to do and leads don’t get stuck waiting.

Ideally, only choose one lead assignment method and stick to it. For instance, you might decide to assign leads based on the product interest of a customer. This single-focus approach streamlines the process, making it clear and easy for your team members to connect to each lead quickly.

Optimize forms to support your lead routing process

The design of your website signup forms matters. When your forms ask the right questions, you gather essential info that helps in correctly routing leads.

Depending on your focus, you might consider including fields that capture a lead’s product interest, location, or company size. This can guide the lead to a sales rep who is best equipped to handle their specific needs.

Also, make sure each lead form is user-friendly and not too long. Otherwise, potential customers might click away before filling out each field and submitting the form for your review.

When collecting lead data, you must follow laws that protect customer information, like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Handling customer data safely and legally is crucial to staying on the right side of the law. This means being transparent about how you use the data and ensuring it’s secured against unauthorized access.

Compliance with lead data protection laws avoids legal issues and builds customer trust. People are more likely to engage with businesses that treat their personal info with respect and care.

Train your Sales Reps and Managers on lead routing processes

When implementing lead routing, take the time to train your Sales team on how it works. To do their jobs effectively, each team member must understand their role, what to expect from their potential customers, and the best ways to talk to them.

The training should include how leads are distributed, the criteria for assigning them, and expectations for timely follow-ups. Also, it’s essential to educate your team on using the info provided with each lead, such as the customer’s interests, needs, and sales funnel stage.

Start with a basic training module for your entire team. Then, offer regular refresher courses to keep your team up-to-date and ready to tackle new challenges in lead management.

Balance the workload among sales team members evenly

Round-robin lead distribution evenly delivers leads to sales teams, but it’s becoming less popular. As automated lead routing methods take its place, it’s often necessary to check for workload imbalances. When routing by other methods, like lead score, some reps might handle more high-potential leads, while others receive fewer or less promising ones.

To maintain fairness, check and adjust the rules for lead routing on a set schedule. If routing by lead scores causes imbalances, consider switching to alternative routing methods like product interest or rep experience. It might also help to automatically reroute leads to available reps if there’s no response in 1-2 hours.

Set up a customized onboarding journey for every new lead

Lead routing personalizes the sales process, but it’s just the beginning. Creating a personalized onboarding experience for each new lead can greatly improve their sales journey.

Think of it as tailoring the onboarding process to each lead’s unique characteristics and needs. This means sorting leads based on factors like demographics, behavior, and interests. With this information, you can provide content and resources that directly address their pain points and expectations.

Using marketing automation tools can help deliver your custom content promptly. Be sure to personalize each message by using the customer’s name, mentioning their interests, and linking to content that resonates with them.

Appoint a customer success manager for each existing customer

In addition to catering to new leads, it’s vital to provide exceptional support to your existing customers. Consider appointing a customer success manager (CSM) for every single customer on your roster.

This dedicated account executive takes on the role of being a primary point of contact and a trusted advisor for the customer. They invest time in understanding each customer’s unique goals and challenges. This forges stronger and more meaningful customer relationships, fostering brand loyalty and retention rates.

Furthermore, having a CSM in place opens doors to potential upsell opportunities. People are much more likely to use the advice and special offers from a personal advisor who has their best interests at heart.

Aim for accuracy when routing leads to your Sales team 

While speed is key in sales, it should not compromise the accuracy of the lead routing process. It’s more important to ensure each lead goes to the best sales rep for the job.

If a customer gets to talk to the right sales rep, they are more likely to feel valued and supported. But if the lead goes to the wrong rep, it can waste time and even lose potential deals.  

So, always try to balance being quick and correct when you send leads to your team. To confirm that’s happening, audit your lead assignment and sales results quarterly, if not more often. 

Develop lead routing paths to achieve sales triumph

Lead routing paths direct potential customers to the right people on your Sales team. It’s a smart strategy that connects leads with the experts who can assist them best, improving your chances of making a sale. So, if you want better sales results, implement lead routing and get ready to watch your conversions soar.

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