How to use B2B Intent Data

See how your business can use intent data to better analyze prospect's behavior across your website.

How to use B2B Intent Data
Shelly Weaver
Shelly Weaver
December 12, 2022
min read
Apple Podcast LinkGoogle Podcast LinkSpotify Podcast Link
Apple Podcast LinkGoogle Podcast LinkSpotify Podcast Link

As a sales cycle progresses, your buyer’s path narrows. They learn, they discern, and they yearn to buy from the challenger sellers who made the first and biggest impressions. 

The sooner you have that intent insight—the more you can see which accounts are secretly researching—the sooner your ADRs can respond. The earlier they respond, the greater your influence.

In this guide, we explore how you can use intent data to get into your named accounts early.

How to use Intent Data

In the sales context, “intent” data is a 0-100 score that suggests how likely an account or individual appears to be to buy. It’s determined by an algorithm, which looks at data about how heavily they’ve been researching online, and reveals how their “intent’ has changed over time.

Behind most intent scores is an intent data provider (like Clearbit, Demandbase, or 6Sense) that has relationships with permission-based websites where buyers conduct their research. Those could include digital publications, review sites, industry blogs, trade sites, analyst sites, and more—which gather visitors’ purchase intent data.

As buyers read, download, and leave their emails, the intent provider gathers third-party data and scores each buyer on their categories of interest and overall buying intent.

Where does sales intent data come from?

Intent providers gather data from a network of partners:

  • Review sites like G2 and TrustRadius
  • Forums like Quora
  • Trade publications
  • Content syndication providers 
  • Publications like PCMag, Forbes, ComputerWorld, TechCrunch, VentureBeat
  • Additional third parties]

As such, intent data is advance warning, and about as unbiased as it gets. It’s more accurate than fit data, which comes from third-party technographic data providers and often decays rapidly. And you can access it earlier in the cycle than engagement data, which you only gather when the buyer visits your site. Intent is a reflection of what your account did when nobody was watching, right from the start.

How much are buyers conducting that sort of research where they might reveal sales intent data? Quite a lot. They spend 45% of their time researching on their own, most of it online. 

Gartner: Buyers spend 45% of their time researching independently.

Their early Google searches are your early in. With an intent data provider scoring your accounts on their interests, as well as the intensity of their interest, you and your ADRs can rank your accounts by intent. If multiple people from one account are researching heavily, and you have a system that can aggregate that information, that account may show as “surging,” meaning it’s in-market, or about to be. Those are the ones that deserve your attention. 

You could pour more attention into those accounts with more traditional outreach, which is a start. But your intent data will be much more effective if you also have creative ways to engage that account—like chatting when they visit your site.

Why Intent Data is important to sales

What’s the first thing accounts do when you start reaching out to them? Visit your website. Even if it’s too early to talk, many will want to know if your company is legitimate, whether you’re credible, and whether to entertain your outreach.

With most intent data providers, the story ends there. You’re reliant on the marketing team’s copywriting, white papers, and popups for those prospective buyers to find what they were looking for. But if you have a conversational marketing platform like Qualified, you can take the next step and reach out then and there. Having an account-based buyer intent solution is important to make a sale and engage enterprise customers.

Intent Data helps your sales team achieve a few things:

  • Target more accounts by leveraging Intent Data to help you expand your list of potential buyers within your ICP and identify who is most interested in your product.
  • Create better lead segmentation by analyzing the kind of content they're engaging with and tailoring your approach at a micro level. Understanding buying intent signals can create a much more powerful lead-scoring system, so your sales team focuses on the highest-quality leads.
  • Leverage Intent Data in your competitive strategy by seeing which competitors your ICPs are also researching, and track the kind of content that they're using to engage your buyers. Use this information to inform your content strategies and gain an edge over your competition.
  • Increase your engagement with customers by tracking their engagement levels on your website. This can help you prevent churn (lower content engagement might signal a decreased interest!) and also identify upsell opportunities. Maybe one of your customers has started researching another product that you actually already have a solution for, now you can target them with that content and work with your team to reach out and start proactive discussions.

Influence your enterprise deals early with sales intent data

In a perfect world, you and your ADRs would get a text the moment an enterprise prospect thought about buying. With an intent and conversational chat provider like Qualified, that’s close to the reality. 

When you have advance warning that prospects are researching, and can be there to personalize their site visit, you become the first responder in their journey. More airtime means more influence, and more influence means that deal is more likely to be yours. And that’s a big difference for a little bit of added data. 

Learn How Bitly Increased Pipeline by 6X with Qualified using Intent Data to increase qualified leads.

Related articles

Qualified in Action

Quick demo?

Discover how we can help you convert more prospects into pipeline–right from your website.

Contact Us