Inbound Vs. Outbound Sales: Here’s the Difference

Created On
December 14, 2022

Are you stuck between inbound and outbound sales and need to know which will work best for your business? Well, it’s quite a common issue, and we’ll address it today!

Indeed, the sort of sales strategy you employ will be determined by the plan you develop for your team, which should be based on the composition of your sales team, your objectives, your target market, your product or service, and other unique factors to each circumstance. These are very important to convert a passive buyer into an ideal customer.

If so, then this article is for you. Because in this written piece, we will go from defining inbound and outbound deals to their strategies, techniques, key differences, and tools. So, let's buckle up for the ride of inbound vs outbound deals, determine the answer to your question, and find out which one is better.

Insight About Inbound sales

First, let's digest the concept of inbound deals.

It is a lead generation strategy where inbound leads come to you, stay on your platform, and ultimately convert into customers. Inbound deals are the most unique and modern way of selling.

The leads that come to you and become your clients are inbound sales.

In inbound sales, you primarily focus on prospects' pain points, help them research and analyze their situation, and then give them a solution to their problem. In short, you focus on helping them via your marketing strategy rather than directly selling your product to them.

You attract potential leads through inbound marketing campaigns, i.e., blogging, social media marketing, video marketing, etc.

You have to look after two main things to use inbound sales:

  1. Your content quality by your generated Sales team
  2. Ease of your brand online availability.

Inbound Sales can be Better than Outbound Sales.

Inbound sales are reverse prospecting, where you use three main principles, i.e., attract, engage, and delight (solution of their problem). There are several benefits that inbound deals possess over outbound deals. Let's try to understand some of them.

  • Improve brand awareness.

To engage more people, you must make a lot of quality content about your brand, tools, products, policies, etc., using different platforms. By doing so, you are educating your audience about your brand, thus ultimately improving your brand awareness.

  • Cost-effective

Inbound marketing requires a few people to make quality content and a manager who can convert potential prospects into customers via the sales funnel. So, it costs less than outbound sales marketing.

  • More conversions

Suppose your solution or product frees your prospects and relieves them of their frustrations; congratulations. They are your new customers.

So, by understanding your customers' needs and frustrations. Increase your conversion rate.

  • Build long-term relationships.

You must do an Inbound deals Strategy on different platforms to attract potential leads to your products. So, doing this is very time-consuming and needs hard work, but it can pay you in the form of loyal customers if your help adds value to their lives.

Methods of Inbound Sales

Let's dig out a couple of methods to use in Inbound sales.

  • Blog posts can be used to spread awareness about your brand. You can add 101 blog posts if your business is new or you want to expand your existing business. B2B and B2C blog posts are crucial in engaging people.
  • Social media platforms are one of the required methods in Inbound marketing. You can directly connect with your audience and convert potential prospects into customers.
  • Podcasts and webinars can build trust and authority around your brand by inviting influential people to talk about your products.
  • Video Marketing- by creating fun and brand-related short or long videos on different platforms such as YouTube, TikTok, etc., you can diversify your audience, thus leading to more conversions. You can also run paid ads as icing on the cake to engage more people.

You have to use a lot of inbound strategies at a time to maximize your revenues.

Outbound Sales

are the conventional method where a sales representative initiates the conversation by offering the product via cold pitching (deals pitch) to potential leads to convert them into prospects and, eventually, clients.

The leads for which you went out and converted into your clients are outbound sales.

If you want a quick win, a rapid increase in your customer number, and your brand or business is new; then outbound sales marketing is for you.

You must go into your marketplace, find potential leads, cold pitch them, convert them into prospects, then hurray! You have new clients to buy your products, thus skyrocketing your revenue.

Why Outbound Sales can be better than Inbound Sales?

Outbound Sales Strategies are the most personalized way of sales marketing. Below given are some benefits which outbound sales have over inbound deals.

  • Immediate results

Outbound sales are the fastest retail marketing that generates immediate results. The retail rep can get quick responses from potential leads about qualified leads.

  • Personalization

As you search for the potential lead before, when you cold-pitch them, you already know about their needs. Thus, it is easy to make a personalized cold pitch that fits your information to convert them into future customers.

According to a study conducted by an InstaPage, customised emails had average open rates of 18.8% and six times greater transaction rates.

  • Control

In outbound sales, you are the in-charge of everything from pitching your leads to the frequency of pitching, offering your products, and your customers.

Methods of Outbound Sales

Below are a few methods of outbound deals that your entire team, which looks into marketing, can use.

  • Cold emailing

It is the quickest way to pitch several potential leads at a time. You email the leader without their permission to give them information about your product and offer. You mostly know about your leads' needs, so the pitch is warm-up and personalized according to the buyer persona.

To learn more about cold emailing, you can visit this blog, which explains how to write an effective cold email.

  • Cold calling

Like cold emailing, cold calling is also without permission but a little invasive. Cold calling is fast-paced as the sales rep spontaneously learns about the lead qualification for further process.

  • Social selling

The latest way of outbound deals is by searching and engaging with your prospective customers on various social media platforms.

How do Both Outbound Sales and Inbound Sales Differ From Each Other?

The key difference between inbound and outbound sales revolves around the first communication - who initiates the contact first?

If the potential lead itself initiates the first contact by getting influenced by your content and becomes a customer, then it is the inbound deal.

On the other side, if the sales rep initiates the first contact and converts the potential lead into a prospective buyer, it is the outbound deal.

Both retail strategies are win-win if the first contact is fruitful!

Effective Execution of the Inbound Sales Strategy

Your inbound retail strategy should include factors that organically attract potential customers to your products. Let's take a look at these steps.

  1. Capture

First, identify your customers' problems and capture their attention by providing them with solutions. Now the question is - How to charge your lead's attention? By producing high-quality content that presents the answer to their problems.

  1. Qualify

Once you have the lead's attention, process them into automatic qualification. By the end of this, you will get to know that either your product is a good fit for them or not.

  1. Pitch

If the lead is qualified, it's time to present them with the consultative pitch. Listen to their needs, present them with a solution, or invite them for a demo or meeting.

  1. Close the deal

When your prospect agrees to buy your services or product, negotiate the terms and finalize your deal with them.

Inbound Sales Techniques

The most common techniques you can use in an inbound sales strategy are:

  • Interlinkage

Link all your content with each other; in this way, more awareness will be spread. The more potential leads know about your product, the more they will likely become customers.

  • Use of testimonials

Use your previous satisfied customer testimonials to build trust with potential prospects. It's human nature that if other people like a thing, you ultimately start to like it. So, use testimonials in your retail funnel to give your potential buyers a sense of security and likeliness.

  • Continuous content generation

Create strict content creation content and stick to it. If you want long-term customers, you must make content to give them updates because customers need updates about their favorite product manufacturers.

Tools for Inbound Sales

It would be best if you also had the right tools to execute your strategies efficiently in the retail cycle. Here are a few of the essential tools, from promoting to reporting your content, that can increase the chances of your success by a hundred times.

  1. Content Optimization Tools

Content optimization tools will help your content generators or bloggers create strong content and can make a notable difference in the quality of the content written. Some of the common examples of Content Optimization tools are mentioned below:

SmartLead is one of the leading and most powerful tools available where businesses can find effective cold emailing and warm-up strategies. It provides an AI-based tool to write effective cold emails that can land directly in the client's inbox. With this tool, any company can maximize its retail and revenue.

Only 20% of cold emails in the software business are opened, which implies that 80% of them go unread as they get lost in the flood of email. Thus, SmartLead can help you with cold emails to increase the average opening rate and eventually increase the chances of customer conversion.

An AI-based content platform that identifies the research gaps and provides you with new topics by searching millions of articles so that you can write recent blog posts that have never been written before.

  1. SEO Tools

SEO tools identify your content's weaknesses and help you rank on top of the search engine result page (SERP), such as.

This tool is helpful for keyword research and provides cost-per-click (CPC) information.

It is a quick audit SEO tool that crawls all sizes of websites to assess SEO effectiveness.

  1. Website Optimization Tools

Website optimization tools collect data from websites about user experiences and help you understand what works well for your site and what needs to be improved, such as.

Effective Execution of the Outbound Sales Strategy

In outbound retail, to say cold calls are enough is mere madness. Because thanks to the data available today, you can personalize your pitch, which increases the chance of conversion by millions of times and can change the customer's buying decision. Let's dive into the Outbound Strategies.

  1. Prospect

Build a list of potential people interested in your services or product. You can build this list by using the data on prospects' social media platforms, or you can also buy this data from B2B data providers.

  1. Outreach

After building a list of potential customers, it's time to reach out to them by calling, texting, emailing, etc. Make a personalized pitch for every lead and focus on your knowledge of their pain points before presenting them with a solution.

The fact that just 70% of companies send tailored emails is likely to be the cause of the decline in open and click rates.

  1. Qualify

Once you have their attention, qualify them as potential prospects by identifying their needs and your products.

  1. Pitch

Don't stop here. Continue your pitching. Make them realize that only you have the solution to their problems. Pitch them with constant calls, emails, or texts. Prepare an email list to create a record of the pitches to the enterprise clients.

If there are 10,000 clients in your email list, then if we consider only 30% open rate, then around 3,000 clients will be opening and reviewing your mail.

  1. Objection handling

Customers always have objections regarding your products. So, handle their complaints by telling them the value and peace your product will add to their lives.

  1. Closing the deal

Once their objections and questions dissolve, hurry and close the deal.

Outbound Sales Techniques

Let's discuss the techniques to use in outbound retail.

  • Sales on Board

Train a rep so the consumers know thoroughly about your company, products, policies, and strategies. The more knowledgeable the agent, the higher the chances of conversion. Take your time with the perfect one; train your agent to be perfect.

  • Personalized content

The best way of winning the hearts of your lead is personalization. The more you know about their need, the more chances they will increase your future customer base.

Tools for Outbound Sales

Many tools can be used for outbound retail, such as,

Final Thoughts

So, the first contact decides the fate of retail, whether inbound or outbound deals. Contact initiated by the lead is inbound deals, while the contract created by the retail rep is outbound sales. In both deals, the leads must go through the sales funnel to be qualified into potential prospects and loyal clients.

The question is, what type of sales should you follow in your business? 87% of business owners say that their sales increase using both sales simultaneously.

So, the answer is to use both of them to skyrocket your revenue!

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

  • dfbvrsg
  • svsv

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Author’s Details

Tanmay Shukla

Tanmay is a SEO Content Writer at Smartlead. His zeal and enthusiasm in writing led him to the path of being a Content Writer. He has been advancing in this field by possessing more knowledge and skills. His constant endeavor has made him a whiz in SEO, Creative Writing, and driving sales through writing.


Edited by:


People will also read

Frequently asked questions

General Questions

What are active leads?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

Active leads are the contacts you upload in Smartlead, similar to contacts in HubSpot; if you upload 1000 leads to a campaign, they are considered 1000 active leads. If you upload similar leads to a new campaign, they are not considered a “new active lead” as they already exist in our system.

Do you provide mailboxes, or do I need to connect my own?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

We don’t offer mailboxes yet. You need to get your own dedicated list of mailboxes using popular providers like Gmail, Outlook, Zoho, and others that exist in the market. Once you get them, follow our detailed guides to connect them quickly.

Do you offer guides and articles on succeeding with cold emails?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

Absolutely, one of our most popular guides can be found right here. It's been used by a large percentage of users to go from zero to cold emailing experts. Covering all topics from email infrastructure to copywriting and lead sourcing.

Is another tool needed for warmups?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

No, Smartlead has over 200,000 highly reputed mailboxes connected. The advantage you get along with naturalized AI conversations is access to aged domains you will never find in any warmup tool.

What is the API commonly used for?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

It is used popularly by agencies to automate their entire lead generation process as well as to connect Smartlead to external tools to push and pull data from. You can also connect to 1000s of apps using Zapier.

What type of businesses sees the most success with Smartlead?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

Anyone that can close deals from demos will succeed with Smartlead. It works for Sales companies, Marketing agencies, SaaS businesses, Recruitment, and offline companies (like construction).

Do you provide me with lead sources?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

We do not provide you with leads. You will need to use other data providers. These leads can be automatically added to Smartlead using our API or bulk uploaded via our CSV upload system.

Do you integrate with any CRMs?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

We're building native integrations with Hubspot, Salesforce, Close, Pipedrive, and many more. The best part, due to our open API and Webhook infrastructure, you can connect to any CRM in the world without an issue.

How many team members can I add?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

You can add an unlimited number of team members, as well as assign them roles and authority access.

Do you have custom plans beyond the Pro plan?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

Yes, it's common for many people to move to Custom plans after a few weeks. You can view all the options for up to 10M leads on the subscription page once you sign up for free.

Powerful Automated Email Marketing that Drives Sales.

  • All Features Included
  • No Credit Card Required
  • Free Warmup Included