Sales Discovery Call: Learn How to Sell More with One Phone Call

It is quite challenging to sell something without knowing what your customers want. One of the first sales steps is to get to know your customers’ pain points first. It is nearly impossible to sell anything without knowing them. And a sales discovery call helps you do that.

Discovery calls enable you to build a positive relationship with your customers before selling your services. It is one of the first calls you make after connecting with your potential lead over email.

Is this all about discovery calls? Not at all. This was just a brief overview of the discovery calls. There is much more to learn about sales discovery calls. And we have got you covered right here.

We have created a detailed guide on sales discovery calls. We have covered everything in this guide, from running a discovery call to the tips to improve a discovery call. It talks about all you need to know about sales discovery calls.


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Continue reading to learn more about sales discovery calls.

What Is a Sales Discovery Call?

Let’s first talk about what discovery means in general.

Discovery refers to finding something new about a particular thing. It could be a person, place, object, or anything. Simply put, discovery means exploring something new about anything for the first time.

You explored some new facts about William Shakespeare. That is a discovery. You found some mind-boggling truths about sales. That is also a discovery.

So, this is what discovery means in general? Let’s now talk about what is a discovery call in sales?

It is the first call that happens between you and your potential customer after they show interest in your products and services.

It is an ideal tool to know your customers’ needs and wants before pitching the product. This is an excellent way to know if the customer is a good fit for your product.

According to a study by Marc Wayshak, 50% of the customers aren’t a good fit for the product or service. It is always important to conduct a discovery call with your leads.

This is all about sales discovery calls. Check the next section to know what discovery questions are in sales.

What Are Discovery Questions in Sales?

These are the questions we ask our possible leads to check whether they are the perfect fit for our product or not. Discovery questions help sales representatives to learn more about their prospects.

Sales representatives ask open-ended questions in a discovery call instead of close-ended questions. These questions can simply be replied with a ‘Yes’ or ‘No.’ Open-ended questions are related to the leads’ challenges, obstacles, pain points, etc.

You can use these questions to learn about prospects’ wants, finances, timeline, authority, and other essential factors. The primary goal of sales discovery questions is to understand leads better.

We learned what discovery questions are in sales. Read the following section to know what happens during a discovery call?

What Happens During a Discovery Call?

A sales discovery call is the perfect tool to gather more information about your customers. During a discovery call, a sales representative asks questions that could help pitch the products and services.

Discovery calls help to understand the prospect’s pain points and needs and helps in solving them with your product or service. These calls help you know whether the customer is the right fit for you or not.

Read the next section to learn how to run a discovery sales call.

How To Run a Discovery Sales Call From Beginning to End?

Here are the simple steps to run a discovery sales call.

Step 1. Schedule the Discovery Call.

Step 2. Do Proper Research.

Step 3. Craft a Discovery Call Script.

Step 4. Set the Agenda and Get Prospect Buy-In.

Step 5. Ask Discovery Call Questions (With Levels).

Step 6. Check Lead Is Qualified (Use Framework GPCTBA/C&I).

Step 7. Close the Call.

Step 8. Follow Up.

Let’s start talking about each step in detail now.

Step 1. Schedule the Discovery Call

The first and foremost step is to schedule a discovery call with your lead. Scheduling the call is important to make the call worth it for you and your prospect. You can follow these steps before getting on the phone with them.

  • Explain Your Goals and Agenda: It’s your job to give them a brief overview of the call’s agenda. Let them know what they can expect during the call, the objective of the call, the introduction, and a few other information.
  • Schedule the Call: After explaining your call goals to your lead. It’s now time to schedule the call as per their availability. You need to ensure that they have sufficient time to connect with you over a call and discuss things without a hurry. After scheduling the call, add the call as an event to your reminder.
  • Plan the Follow-up Reminder: Reminding your prospect about the call is necessary. You can remind them through email, message, and call.

Step 2. Do Proper Research

Learning should never stop, whether it is about something that interests you or your lead. Before everything, it is essential to research thoroughly about your prospects. Leaving a single bit could be a hurdle in closing the deal.

Research plays an integral role in conducting a discovery call. When we say research, it means digging out and knowing everything about your prospects.

So, how can you research the most basic information about your leads?

The first thing you should look for is their LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn is one of the best websites to connect with professionals around the globe. There are higher chances that your lead has a presence on LinkedIn.

You can check everything about them from their LinkedIn profile, such as their working industry, occupation, job title, years of experience, past experience, etc.

LinkedIn is one of the first options to collect basic information about them.

But what if they aren’t present on LinkedIn. What should you do in this case? Start searching about them on Google.

Search about them on Google, and look for their personal websites in the SERPs. Personal websites can reveal a lot more about them. When there were no social media platforms to connect, people used to build their own websites. So, a personal website is also a good way to collect information about them.

Step 3. Craft a Discovery Call Script

A discovery call script is necessary to build the foundation of your sales discovery calls. The script will help you structure your call better to get sound output. It lets you build a smooth flow, and then you can continue the conversation in your own style.

A perfect discovery call script is a mixture of these four essential components. Here are four main components of a discovery call script:

  1. Opening lines;
  2. Introduction of your business;
  3. Discovery questions;
  4. And Close words;

Start your discovery call with a short and crisp talk, and make sure to mention a few things that you learned about them during the research. Then, introduce your business to your lead. Here comes the central part. Start asking discovery questions to the lead to know more about them.

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In the end, close the call with a personal touch. You should end a call with a good gesture. When someone invests their time and energy in you, it’s always good to thank them with all your heart. Leaving a positive sign-off will create a good image of your company. The next time you contact them, they will put more effort into answering your call. So, it is good to share your experience with them and thank them.

Step 4. Set a Clear Agenda Before Getting On the Call

The first five minutes of the discovery call are crucial for the rest of the call to go smoothly. It is important to set a clear plan before getting on a call. Ask yourself, what do you want to achieve from this call? Of course, you want to know more about the lead and its fit. What else do you want to achieve from this call?

You should always be transparent with the agenda in your mind. In addition, also share it with your client in the first place. It’s good to share it in the beginning so that they can easily catch up with you.

You should start the call with a short introduction about your company and your role in the company. You can crack a few jokes during the call. Being professional does not always work. Try to keep the introduction short and sweet. Tell some crispy information about your company rather than telling everything to them in detail.

Step 5. Ask Discovery Call Questions (With Levels)

It’s now time for the most critical part of the sales discovery call, which is asking relevant and meaningful questions to your prospects. The objective of a discovery call is to find out more about your prospects.

You can’t ask your leads the same level of questions during the whole call. For instance, first, you ask some basic questions about them or their business. Then, you jump to the next level by asking some detailed questions.

Sales discovery call questions are categorized into Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3.

Level 1: The Level 1 Discovery Questions include the most basic questions. For instance, questions regarding their future goals, objectives, etc.

Level 2: Level 2 Discovery Questions go deeper than Level 1. For example, you can start asking questions targeting their pain points. Then, tell them how your product or service can help them.

Level 3: Level 3 Discovery Questions are critical to close the deal. At this level, you need to ask questions related to their revenue. You need to let them believe that they would have better results if they bought your product or service. This will create urgency and increase the chances of closing the deal.

Discovery questions are an integral part of a sales discovery call. These questions will help you get to know more about them. You need to structure questions in a way to get to know most of your leads.

We have shared some of the best discovery sales questions later in the articles. Read till the end to check them.

Step 6. Check Lead Is Qualified

The next step is to check whether the lead is qualified or not. Create a checklist, including all the factors that make a perfect lead. Then, check off the points you think the lead meets. For instance, if a person meets the authority point, tick the Authority point in your checklist.

1. The BANT Framework

The BANT Framework is a lead qualification framework that provides a structured approach to qualifying leads.

It was created by the DMA, which is the UK’s leading marketing association.

The BANT Framework outlines four questions to ask when qualifying a lead: Budget, Authority, Need and Timeline.

This framework was created because marketers are faced with an overwhelming number of leads and they can’t afford to waste time on unqualified leads.

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2. The ChAMP Framework

The ChAMP framework is a lead qualification framework that helps marketing and sales professionals to qualify leads. The acronym stands for the four key components of the process: Customization or Needs, Awareness, Motivation, and Proposition.

The customization component of the process allows marketers to customize their offer in order to better suit their prospect’s needs. The awareness component focuses on how well your prospect understands your organization and its offerings. The motivation component identifies why your prospect should consider buying from you instead of someone else. Finally, the proposition component evaluates how likely it is that your prospect will buy from you in the near future.

It covers four key areas:

  • Goals: What are the goals of the potential customer?
  • Authority: Do they have authority to make decisions?
  • Money: What is their budget?
  • Timeline: When do they need the product or service by?
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3. The GPCTBACI framework

The GPCTBACI framework helps marketers understand how each lead is qualified and how they can use this information to prioritize them accordingly.

The GPCTBACI framework is a lead qualification framework that helps salespeople qualify their leads, and it stands for:

  • Geography
  • Proximity
  • Competitiveness
  • Current business activity
  • Company size
  • Industry vertical

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4. The FAINT Framework

The FAINT framework is a lead qualification framework that helps marketers identify the best leads. It consists of five main questions:

-Functional: What are their needs?

-Aesthetic: What are they looking for?

-Income: How much money can they spend?

-Niche: What do they like to talk about?

-Timeframe: When do they want to buy something?

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5. The ANUM framework

The ANUM framework is a lead qualification framework, which is used to identify the best leads for a company. The acronym stands for Awareness, Need, Urgency and Money. This system helps marketers identify the best leads that are most likely to convert into customers.

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Step 7. Close the Call

It is important to have a great ending to the discovery call to make it a perfect discovery call. You should end the discovery call with a positive sign-off. You should make sure that you are ending the call with a conclusion. They should know what they got to know from this call. Also, how this call helped them in finding the solution of their problems.

Step 8. Follow Up

The final step of a sales discovery call is to follow up with the lead. The ideal time for following up with the lead should be after at least five to seven business days. It is important to give them a few days to think about your offer or product. You can follow up with them via a call, email, or message. In the follow-up call, you should ask them if they have any queries and make sure to solve them if they have any.

These are the eight easy to follow steps to run a discovery call. Read the next section to know how to improve your discovery calls?

How To Improve Your Discovery Sales Calls?

Here are a few tips to improve your discovery calls.

Tip #1. Always Research About Your Leads

Not doing enough research about your prospects is one of the biggest blunders you could ever make. Calling your lead and not knowing anything about them is not enough to close the deal. You can’t have a good conversation with the prospects without knowing the basic information. These types of conversations generally don’t convert or convince them.

Tip #2. Never Ask Close Ended Questions

Instead of asking, ‘Do You Use A CRM to Manage Leads for Your Business?’ Ask ‘Can You Please More About the CRM You Use to Manage Leads?’ There is a massive difference between both questions.

The first question can quickly be replied to with ‘Yes’ or ‘No.’ The replacement of the first question asks them to explain in detail instead of replying with ‘Yes’ or ‘No.’ Open-ended questions are a great way to get to know your customers.

Tip #3. Talk About Problems Clearly

You should never hesitate to ask your lead for their problems. In the end, you both are here to grow their businesses with the help of each other’s expertise. You should always ask about the client’s budget during the call itself.

We can’t just tell the customer that they have a problem, we need to tell them why they have this problem and how it affects their business.

Source: SalesLoft

Talk about problems clearly in discovery call:

– What are your goals?

– What are you trying to accomplish?

– What do you want us to do?

Tip #4. Build Relationship First, Then Sell

Sales discovery calls are not all about selling all the time. The discovery call’s objective is to build a healthy relationship with your leads and know more about them. Sometimes the sales discovery call is to educate your prospects first, rather than counselling them on the first call. This will help in relation-building with your leads.

Tip #5. Ensure Two-way Conversation

Two-way communication is a must during a call. According to a report by Chorus, top sales representatives talk about 50% of the whole conversation. The lead does the rest. It is crucial to be a good speaker but also a good listener.

Don’t always speak, but listen too. Sales representatives make this huge mistake of asking a lot of close-ended questions. It means they ask questions that can be answered with yes or no. This makes the conversation a little dull, and they can never collect enough information about them. It is always better to ask open-ended questions, which can help you gain more information.

Touch their pain points, and soothe them with your products and services. It feels good when someone understands your pain. Right? You also have to do the same with your prospect. Understand their pain point, and talk about them with your lead.

Tip #6. End the Call With A Good Gesture

When someone spends their time and energy on you, it’s always good to thank them with all your heart. Leaving a positive sign-off will create a good image of your company. The next time you contact them, they will put more effort into answering your call. So, it is good to share your experience with them and thank them.

These are the tips to improve your discovery calls. Read the following section to check 15 must ask discovery questions.

15 Must-Ask Discovery Questions

Here are 15 discovery questions you should ask your Prospects:

  1. Tell me about your company.
  2. What’s your role in the company?
  3. What activities are you responsible for?
  4. What are your goals related to this business?
  5. What problems do you face day-to-day in your company?
  6. What’s the source of the problem?
  7. What’s your top-priority at this particular moment?
  8. What’s your set budget to solve this particular problem?
  9. Who else will be involved in choosing a supplier for you?
  10. What’s your timeline for implementation?
  11. What are your primary obstacles to implementing this plan?
  12. How can I help you with this?
  13. Have you ever purchased a similar product or service before?
  14. What were its features and pricing?
  15. What results are you expecting after buying these?
  16. Can I follow up with you on this particular date or day?

These are 15 sales discovery questions you should always ask every prospect. Continue reading to know what makes a good discovery call?

How Many Questions Should You Ask on a Discovery Call?

There aren’t any specific numbers regarding the number of questions you should ask your prospect. You can ask as many questions as you want until it lets you gather more information but the ideal number is 8-10 questions.

There should be two-way communication between you and your leads. You shouldn’t be the only one who is asking the questions. You should wait for the leads to raise questions.

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In addition, your questions should be relevant and meaningful. Those questions should collect some kind of valuable information for you. Those aren’t good questions if they aren’t gathering information for you.

How To Follow Up After a Discovery Call?

Follow-up is a must after conducting a sales discovery call. Now, the question is – how to follow up after a discovery call. Here’s how to do it.

You should follow up with your prospect with an email. The email should include what you discussed in the previous call and what was the conclusion of that call. In the follow-up email, you should ask clients whether they have any questions or not. If they have any questions, you must tackle them.

In the end, you should appreciate them for the time and efforts they put into making this call successful.

What Makes a Good Discovery Call?

There are a lot of factors that make a perfect discovery call. One of the most important factors is that you are personable. Never let them feel like there is a salesman on the other side of the call. Just act like a normal person. This will help you build a healthy relationship with your customers. As a result, this will end up being a perfect discovery call.


This is all about everything you need to know about sales discovery calls. We have tried to explain everything about the sales discovery call in detail in this guide. We discussed everything about the discovery call, from its meaning to how to conduct it. We hope you learned more about sales discovery calls from this guide.

About Author

Lito James is the founder of He is an entrepreneur and marketing specialist who helps businesses to get more leads, subscribers, and customers. Massive Peak has been featured on G2, Cloudways, Sujanpatel, GetResponse, Renderforest, and many more. Follow on LinkedIn | Twitter

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