TLDR: Lead routing tech distributes incoming leads to sales representatives. It’s important to choose the right lead routing system to maximize revenue potential. Evaluate your business needs, consider manual assignments for certain scenarios, and justify the cost based on conversion rates.

What is lead routing? Whenever a lead comes in, your sales team needs to decide who will work on it. Lead routing is the process of distributing incoming lead records among your sales reps. It allows Sales to automate the flow of leads based on various methodologies, assigning records based on factors like their region, industry, seniority, and prior relationships with reps. Done right, routing keeps leads moving fast and towards the people best equipped to convert them.


“A process that delivers leads slowly, to the wrong reps, will restrict your revenue potential.”


The benefit of third-party lead routing: CRMs and marketing automation platforms tend to have built-in lead-routing functions, but using them isn’t the only approach your sales team can take. Third-party solutions offer more advanced features that may justify the cost depending on your needs, while businesses in some scenarios can opt to handle lead assignments manually.

What’s in this article for you? The decision falls with your sales leaders, and it’s an important one to consider—a process that delivers leads slowly, to the wrong reps, will restrict your revenue potential. In this Tough Talks Made Easy, you’ll learn how to

➡️ Evaluate the market of lead routing tools

➡️ Focus on the features and performance factors that matter

➡️ Advise your sales leaders on the lead routing system best suited for your business


Route planning

As with any potential tool acquisition, you want to consider a new lead routing system through this lens: Is your business in the right state — with the right needs — to justify the costs?

In some scenarios, Sales can manage without an automated lead routing mechanism. You’re likely suited to a less sophisticated setup (for instance, where one senior sales person identifies and assigns leads by hand) if your business:

👉 Works with few inbound leads

👉 Serves a niche sector

👉 Has a small sales team

👉 Tends to receive warm leads

That said, if you’re experiencing issues like slow follow-ups or low conversion rates, it suggests that your current routing processes aren’t working. Listen to your reps:

  • Are they getting leads suited to their regional or industry expertise?
  • Are incoming leads from companies that are already in your database going to the people familiar with those accounts?
  • Are they able to strike while the iron’s hot?

If the answer to any of these is ‘no,’ it’s time to rethink how you’re routing leads.

And if your business has a large sales team serving global markets in various industries, you stand to benefit from the efficiency and granularity of a dedicated third-party tool.


Making the case

Annually, you’re looking at between $20k-100k for a lead routing tool.

If your Head of Sales is reluctant to allocate the budget, gather data on your conversion rates and customer responsiveness. If you can estimate any revenue lost to broken lead routing, frame the tool as an investment to recuperate and exceed the value of that lost business.

As you explore tools on the market, assess each option with these factors top of mind:

👉 How thoroughly does the tool allow you to build routes and orchestrate processes?

👉 How smoothly does it integrate with your CRM and marketing automation platform?

👉 What’s the learning curve?

👉 Can it identify incoming leads who work at a company that already exists in your database?

👉 How can this help to improve SLA fulfilment?


“Lead routing tools tend to be simple to integrate with a CRM.”


Lead routing tools tend to be simple to integrate with a CRM. The only significant overhead to anticipate is for Sales to decide, document, and build routes in the system. Once you’re up and running, keep track of the following metrics:

✅ SLA completion rate

✅ Revenue intake and forecasts per quarter

✅ MQL to SQL

✅ SQL to opportunity

✅ Customer/prospect response rates

After several months of reporting, you’ll be able to surface the ROI of a lead routing tool to your Sales leaders: fast, efficient workflows that play to the strengths of your reps and set them up to succeed.

Get in touch for more guidance on Sales Operations processes and tools.