Everything You Need To Know About Inbound Sales Vs Outbound Sales

The war between Inbound Sales and Outbound Sales is an everlasting one but managers shouldn't pick sides. Here's why

Posted by By Shoaib Ahmed on 2021-10-04

What’s On This Page

  • What Is Inbound Sales?
  • What Is Outbound Sales?
  • How Inbound Sales Works
  • How Outbound Sales Works
  • Does It Matter Which One You Use?
  • Closing Thoughts

Inbound Sales Vs Outbound Sales

Inbound Sales Vs Outbound Sales

Marketing and sales teams have been striving to reach potential customers and generate leads for years. With the advent of the internet and the increased popularity of social media, they've been able to vastly improve their effectiveness – but not without a number of growing pains. Among the most important of these is the struggle between understanding inbound sales and outbound sales.

Inbound sales and outbound sales are two very different ways of working. Inbound sales is the idea of setting up a strategic process that leads a customer to a purchase. Outbound sales is the idea of going out and finding a customer to sell to.

This blog is going to take a look at both of these styles of sales and highlights the benefits and drawbacks of each. So without further adieu, let’s get started.

What Is Inbound Sales?

Inbound sales is a sales process where a company attracts customers via a marketing strategy called inbound marketing. It is the exact opposite of the more traditional outbound sales (more on that in a bit).

Inbound sales are essential processes that you use to “bring” people to your business. Either through lead magnets, paid advertisements, social media campaigns, or plain old click baits - anything you use to get people hooked into your product and in turn converts into a paying customer. Inbound sales are mostly considered high-intent, since they’ve come to you looking for a solution, instead of you approaching them telling them they need to buy from you.

Simply put, Inbound sales is when you make it easy for the prospect to contact you. Your goal is to get the prospect to do the legwork for you.

What Is Outbound Sales?

Outbound sales are when you try to get in touch with your prospects and make an appointment to get an opportunity to sell your point across. The main goal is to get the prospect to make a purchase with you.

Outbound sales are a more expensive part of the sales process, but it has a better chance of conversion since the clients know that there’s a person behind the company that they’re talking to, and not just a stupid website sending them ads based on their search results. Although they may be low intent, the salespeople have a chance.

How Inbound Sales Works

With any sales process, you get a certain sequence of steps that you follow before you convert someone from, well, a stranger, to a lead, then to an intent buyer, then a customer, and then to a loyal advocate of the company.

Inbound sales help you get rid of the first step - it leverages a piece of content that shows you’re a good person to do business with and converts them to a lead. Once they have their foot in the door, there’s only a little way to go before they take out their wallet:

Approach Your Leads

Once your audience signs up to know more about the product, it becomes your duty to approach them and help them make a decision.


This is up to your sales team. Connect. Provide Solution. Convert. Easier said than done.
And that is generally how inbound sales processes work. You get people who are interested in your product, and these people will either make or break your business based on how your sales team handles them. Outbound sales operate a bit differently.

How Outbound Sales Works

Outbound sales processes involve a lot of effort from the sales team. They have to follow a similar procedure to Inbound sales, but with a few added steps:

Reach Out to Potential Clients

This is the first and most important part of the outbound sales process. You’ll have to do your research to find out potential clients, and reach out to them with offers they simply do not want to miss out on.

Connect and Convert

Post reaching out, you need to fix a call with interesting targets, and connect with them quickly before the interest fades. Once the targets recognize there’s something in the deal for them, all you have to do is push for the sale.

Does It Matter Which One You Use?

In our honest opinion, you need a bit of both inbound and outbound sales. There’s no way your business can live off of just inbound sales or outbound sales. It has to be a mixed bag and in varying proportions.

For instance, when your business is still on the runway during its inital stages, it’s natural to rely heavily on outbound sales. No one’s heard of your business, so naturally there may not be any inbound contacts for you to charm away. As you grow, however, things should start to drift more towards inbounds, since they come at a lesser operating cost (in terms of time, energy, and resources).

Closing Thoughts

There’s no particular formula with inbound or outbound sales, and choosing either one over the other is criminal. You should have both, and valuate your business to understand which area to focus more on. That’s how you ace the sales game.

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A Little Bit About Fieldproxy

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