The BANT Sales Process: What Is It, and How Can You Use It Successfully?

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The BANT Sales ProcessSellers have been using the BANT sales process for years to successfully close deals and increase revenue.

 

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What is BANT?

The BANT sales process is a framework that helps sellers qualify and prioritize leads.

And it is an acronym for Budget, Authority, Need, and Time.

Let’s dig into each of those letters a bit further.

What are the elements of the BANT sales process?

B Stands for Budget

Does the prospect have the budget?

Suppose the buyer doesn’t have money allocated to solve this business problem.

In that case, the qualification framework should identify that the buyer is not a high priority for the sales team.

Sales will always be a numbers game, and your sales qualification process had better determine this information quickly.

Questions you should ask to determine if the prospect’s budget exists.

Sales Questions to determine if the buyer has a budget

  • How much funding is available to solve this business need?
  • Does the budget disappear after a specific date, such as an upcoming fiscal year?
  • Related to the above, is there a drop-dead date for spending this money?
  • What other projects is your team working on that might impact the budget for this project?

A Stands for Authority

The next piece of the sales qualification decision-making process is Authority.

Does the prospect have the authority to spend money on your solution?

Can they make a decision or will it be reviewed by others in their company?

Will they need to get a budget from elsewhere in their company?

Sales Questions to determine if the buyer has the authority to make the decision

  • Are you the decision-maker on this purchase? If not, who has decision-making authority (i.e., who makes the final decision)?
  • Do you own the budget, or is it held elsewhere in the organization?
  • Who needs to be included in the conversations before a decision is made?

N Stands for Need

Does the prospect have needs that your product or solution can help them overcome?

Is this problem sufficiently large, at least large enough for you to spend time trying to solve?

And, is the need one of the common challenges your company solves using your product or solution with other customers already?

Sales Qualification Questions to determine if the buyer has a need

  • How is the business working around thse pain points today?
  • How is the current workaround to this problem impacting the business?
  • What would happen if this problem went unsolved?

T Stands for Time

Does the customer have a clear timeline for making a decision and solving his problem?

If there is no clear goal with no defined timeline, they are not going to make a purchase anytime soon.

Sales Questions to determine if the buyer has a timeline constraint

  • Is there an upcoming event or deadline driving you to solve this problem?
  • If you don’t solve this problem within that timeline, what happens?

How do you use BANT effectively?

Alright, you should understand BANT and see it as a valuable lead qualification methodology.

How do you leverage it?

As you move through the lead qualification process, ask questions to uncover each element.

  • Uncover if they have a budget.
  • Ensure they have the decision-making authority to make a purchase without going to others in the organization.
  • Once you know you are working with the decision-maker, dig into the customer challenge to ensure it is a must-solve challenge, not something that is simply a nice-to-solve for the company.
  • And, once you know all of that, dig into the timeline. Make sure there is an urgency to solve the problem.

Don’t interrogate the prospect. Sales teams should have well-orchestrated flows and questions ready to use as part of the needs qualification process.

BANT represents the minimum information set for many organizations that an inside seller (SDR) must gather before handing it off to the outside sales rep (AE) to move the deal forward.

It is a good framework that allows you to know much about the prospect’s challenges.

This model works well for organizations with the inside/outside model, allowing inside sales reps to uncover BANT and handing the outside salesperson the information they need to move forward.

When using this approach, ensure BANT is a requirement for the hand-off to the AE and never let the sales team qualify a lead without getting answers to these questions.

What additional information should an SDR provide their AE?

While BANT is an excellent minimum data set, going deeper can increase your overall effectiveness, leading to better deal quality for your AEs.

What data should you consider requiring?

  • What business challenges are they trying to solve? Related to need, but work upwards to see if you can uncover broader business needs with the prospect. The bigger the pain points to address, the more people are willing to solve them (and the larger the deal).
  • What is their role in the buying process? Determine this early and make sure you are working with the best stakeholder.
  • Who are other people in their business involved in this decision?
  • With what technologies does this need to interact or integrate?

Outstanding Video Diving Even Deeper on BANT

I love this video from Patrick Dang, titled “B2B Sales Prospecting – Qualify Prospects with BANT (Budget, Authority, Need, & Time)”, if you have twelve and a half minutes, give a listen, it’s worth your time to learn more about BANT qualification.

 

BANT vs MEDDIC, MEDDIC vs BANT

How do the two frameworks compare?

BANT and MEDDIC both provide approaches to lead qualification.

MEDDIC is more comprehensive but can be more cumbersome, while BANT is simpler.

When considering your choice of BANT vs MEDDIC, consider the following:

  • The sophistication of your team.
  • The complexity of your deals.
  • Existing sales tools

The BANT sales qualification process will be easier to teach to a junior sales team and will work very well for a shorter sales cycle with low-complexity products.

How does BANT compare to Solution Selling?

Solution Selling is an approach that helps sellers focus on identifying and solving the customer’s problem.

The framework helps buyers more clearly understand their business challenges, leaving them more likely to buy once they do so.

Solution Selling is a more comprehensive framework.

Summary

BANT provides an excellent qualification framework, especially for your inside sales reps and sales teams.

The BANT qualification method helps leads/prospects/sellers deeply understand an opportunity to make a sale by quickly understanding the landscape the customer is working within.

 

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    What is BANT?

    The BANT sales process is a framework that helps sellers qualify and prioritize leads. And it is an acronym for Budget, Authority, Need, and Time.

    What does BANT stand for?

    BANT is an acronym for Budget, Authority, Need, and Time.

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