A to Z of Inside Sales Language: 51 Must Know Sales Terms


Success in sales comes from great communication. Getting a hang of the Sales nomenclature is a prerequisite to be a pro in the industry .But understanding the sales parlance can sometimes be a task in itself. We have come to your rescue.Here is a list of top 51 sales jargons/slangs that you must know in order to be an inside sales champ.

1. Active Buyers – Buyers who are active in a buying journey and looking for solutions. These should be prioritised by the Inbound Sales team.

2. Account Executive – Sales team members that close deals with sales-qualified opportunities.

3. Attention, Interest, Desire, Action (AIDA) – A method of motivating people to buy by gaining their attention, interest, desire for the product, and then inspiring them to take action. AIDA is often used in direct response ads, and can be effective in cold emails.

4. Account Manager – A sales role responsible for managing a large customer account or group of large accounts.

5. Awareness Stage – The first stage of the Buyer’s Journey. A buyer who is at the Awareness Stage will have realised and expressed symptoms of a potential problem, but will not yet know how to solve it. The content should work to address their early challenges, and nurture the buyer towards the Consideration Stage.

6. Business-to-Business (B2B) – Companies that sell goods and services to other companies.

7. Business-to-Consumer (B2C) – Businesses that sell their products straight to the consumer.

8. Before-After-Bridge (BAB) – Cold email formula. Open by describing a problem that is relevant to your prospect, and then describe how the world would be different if that problem didn’t exist.

9. Bounce Rate (BR) – The percentage of email addresses that didn’t receive the message you sent because the message was returned by the mailer server or client.

10. Bottom of the Funnel (BOFU) – prospects at the final stage in the purchasing funnel. At the bottom of the funnel leads have reached the Decision stage of the Buyer’s Journey; content here should be more solution based.

11. Buyer Persona – A representation of your ideal customer that describes who they are, what their objectives are, what motivates them, how they think, and where and when they buy.

12. Buying Signals – Cues from a prospect that they’re ready to buy. Buying signals can be either verbal (i.e., asking about price) or non-verbal (i.e., nodding and holding eye contact).

13. Closed Question – A closed question is typically a yes-or-no question that directs a prospect toward making a choice or taking a position. (Example: “Are you happy with your current supplier?”)

14. Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) – It is calculated by simply dividing all the costs spent on acquiring more customers (marketing expenses) by the number of customers acquired in the period the money was spent.

15. Customer Churn Rate  A metric used to measure customer retention and value. CR = (number of customers at beginning of measurement period – number of customers at end of measurement period) / (number of customers at beginning of measurement period).

16. Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) – A prediction that connects net profit to the entire future relationship of a customer.

17. Click Through Rate (CTR) – The percentage of people who clicked through, for example, on a link in an email. For online ads, it is measured as the number of unique clicks, divided by the number of times that an ad is shown (impressions).

18. Cold Call – Phone call to a potential customer that you’ve had no prior contact with.

19. Conversion Form – Also known as lead capture forms, these are typically found on a Landing Page, and collect details about visitors, usually in exchange for a content offer. When visitors complete a form for the first time, their information is added to your database, making them a Lead.

20. Conversion Path – This is the lead capture journey site visitors go through. In a typical process, a visitor will first click a CTA that leads to a Landing Page, and complete a Conversion Form (which redirects to a Thank You Page containing a Content Offer) causing them to convert to a Lead.

21. Conversion Rate – The number of people who take an action, divided by the number of people who could have. For example, if you send emails to 100 prospects and 25 of them reply, your email has a 25% conversion rate.

22. Cross-Selling – The process of identifying current customers, determining the product or services that they aren’t using, and encouraging them to buy based on their need and a pre-existing satisfaction with the company.

23. Call-To-Action – A sentence or phrase that tells people what to do. “Schedule a call.” “Click here.” “Buy now.”

24. Customer experience (CX) – All the interactions a customer has with your business. This could involve usage of your product, engaging with your website, communicating with your sales team, etc.

>25. Customer Journey The customer journey spans a variety of touchpoints by which the customer moves from awareness to engagement and purchase. Successful brands focus on developing a seamless experience that ensures each touchpoint interconnects and contributes to the overall journey.

26. Decision Maker – The decision maker is the person who ultimately approves a sale or purchase. This is not necessarily the person who appears to be calling the shots; it’s possible that person is actually the gatekeeper.

27. Email Workflow – A series of emails triggered when a lead enters your database. Typically starting with a thank you email and access to a content offer, workflow emails are used to nurture leads and build a relationship through the funnel.

28. Email Service Provider (ESP) – A company that helps senders create and deliver email campaigns.

29. Emotional Sale – A selling method that attempts to appeal to a buyer’s emotions, either by generating desire and excitement around the product’s benefits, or evoking negative emotions like fear and frustration—pain points that your product or service can alleviate.

30. Features, Advantages, Benefits (FAB) – An acronym used to remind salespeople to focus on the benefits a customer will gain from the product, rather than on what they’re selling.

31. Intellectual Sale – An intellectual sale attempts to appeal to a prospect’s logic, and their need for a quick, affordable solution to a problem. An intellectual sale is more “business” than “personal.”

32. Key Performance Indicator (KPI) – Leading indicators or signs that your sales team is doing the things they need to do in order to be successful. Sales KPIs could include lead response time, opportunity-to-win ratio, call connect rate, etc.

33. Lead – A contact that matches one or more of the characteristics of the buyer persona. Lead management softwares can help in managing the leads in an effective manner.

34. Lead Scoring – A number scale that sales and marketing teams agree on to rank inbound prospects according to their behaviors and web activity. A certain number signifies that the lead is ready for sales to reach out.

35. Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL) – A lead that has demonstrated some level of interest in your product/service, and fits criteria determined by the marketing team that indicate it is more likely to become a customer as compared to other leads.

36. Marketing Qualification Representative (MQR) – Inside sales reps tasked with following up with leads that have engaged with marketing content.

37. Month-to-date (MTD) – A period starting at the beginning of the current month, and ending at the current date.

38. Reply Rate – A measurement of a number of people who respond to an email. You can improve this by personalizing your emails.

39. Request for Proposal –  An invitation issued by a company to solicit vendor bids for products, solutions, or services.

40. Return on investment – What you get back from an investment of money, time, or talent.

41. Software as a Service (SaaS) – Businesses that offer services via software available online or downloaded to your computer.

42. Sales Cadence – It is a sequence of activities that sales rep follow when interacting with prospects or leads. Using a sales cadence software will ensure you don’t lose out on any prospects.

43. Sales Enablement – Providing Inbound Sales execs with the marketing insight and Business Intelligence (BI) they need to advise buyers at the right moment and build trusted relationships.

44. Sales Funnel Also known as a revenue funnel or sales process. This is the buying process you lead your customers through.

45. Sales Triggers – An event that creates an opening for a sales opportunity. For example, a company announcing that it’s expanding to a new location could present an upsell or introduction opportunity.

46. Sandbagging – Holding off on closing active deals once you’ve already hit your quota/commission for the month, so that you can more easily hit your numbers the following month.

47. Side selling – Selling a complementary product or service to a prospect who is using a competitor for your main product.

48. Smile and Dial Cold-calling with a cheerful, positive tone of voice— a smile. Smiling communicates warmth and trustworthiness over the phone, which makes the prospect less likely to hang up on you. Even if people can’t see your smile, they can hear it.

49. Sales qualified lead (SQL) – An SQL is the sales team affirming that it’s a good lead with a potential opportunity.

50. Top of the Funnel (TOFU) – The start of the buying process. Often attracted by awareness-stage website content, top of the funnel leads have shown a general interest in your product, or are looking for more information on the solutions you provide. TOFU leads need to be qualified and nurtured so they can start moving down the funnel.

51. Upselling – Making a sale more profitable by convincing a customer to purchase a more expensive product than the one they intended to buy, or selling additional services or complimentary products to go along with the initial item. Sales reps can turn an average sale into an outstanding one by upselling.

Now that you have gotten familiar with the vocabulary of inside sales, pick up the pace and be the best inside sales rep there is!

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