articles, March 12, 2024

Effective Salesforce Lead Management Process: 6 Best Practices

Effective Salesforce Lead Management Process: 6 Best Practices

Think your sales team reps are not pulling their weight? With all that’s going on behind the curtain of lead generation and nurturing, it’s no wonder. Assigning, organizing, and tracking prospects is a hard burden in addition to the craftwork that is closing sales deals.

With more than a decade of experience in consulting and building solutions integrated with Salesforce, we have gained an expert understanding of how to use the CRM to optimize the lead management process. Read on to discover these insights plus 6 best practices shared by Coherent’s Salesforce consultants.

What is lead management in Salesforce?

As a top CRM on the market, Salesforce has all the tools for effective lead management and allows sales reps to easily generate, track, capture, organize, and nurture potential customers until they are converted.

Often, sales reps are involved in redundant tasks that could be fully automated, like connecting the dots and manually tracking leads. By making the most of Salesforce capabilities, you can streamline and speed up the process of closing deals, reducing delays and bottlenecks.

In addition, Salesforce provides powerful analytics that helps sales reps improve their strategies by following their success rates and making grounded decisions based on real data. Using best practices and tactics will allow your business to increase sales, multiply revenue, and drive business growth.

How to use Salesforce to power up your sales funnel

How to use Salesforce to power up your sales funnel

First and foremost, make sure that you are using the latest Lightning Experience version of Salesforce. It greatly improves the user experience and productivity, surpassing Salesforce Classic in numerous ways.

To convince you it’s worth transitioning from Salesforce Classic to Lightning, here are some compelling facts:

  • Users gained a 41% increase in productivity with the new Lightning Experience.
  • Sales funnel guidance features improved conversion rates by 22% compared to Salesforce Classic.
  • Features like the Split View have accelerated time-to-close by 23%.
  • Einstein Search boosted performance by 30% compared to Classic.

Salesforce lead profile page

The cornerstone of Salesforce lead management is the prospect’s profile. Leads in Salesforce are prospects that have not yet been qualified. You may say they’re top-of-funnel or cold leads. Here, in the lead’s profile, you can save and monitor all the information about your prospects:

  • Personal information and contact details provided during lead capture.
  • Sales path progress bar shows where a lead is in the sales pipeline (e.g. Open, Working - Contacted, Closed - Converted, and Closed - Not Converted).
  • Campaign history shows the lead’s participation in marketing events.
  • An activity log of interactions informs about emails, calls, or live meetings that were held with a potential customer.

You can also add any custom fields you desire and tailor the profile to your individual business needs.

Salesforce contacts and accounts

In Salesforce, a lead is transformed into a contact when a sales representative successfully qualifies it. A contact refers to an individual person and may be attached to accounts and/or opportunities.

Accounts are profiles that contain information about the businesses you engage with. For example, all leads and contacts connected to Meta will be linked to the Meta account in your Salesforce lead management setup.

Contact profiles provide the same capabilities as the lead profile, allowing you to store personal information and track lead management activities.

Salesforce opportunities

An opportunity represents a qualified lead with the potential to generate revenue, a chance for you to provide a product or service to a customer or business. Opportunities are deals in progress:

Opportunity management, an expansion of lead management, is a strategic process that involves monitoring, supporting, and controlling the sales process to effectively close deals and convert leads into loyal customers.

Let’s take a look at how the Salesforce lead management process works hands-on.

1. Lead generation & capture

Let’s say you’ve set up a Salesforce-Instagram integration using SleekFlow or the Messaging Studio app on Salesforce’s very own AppExchange platform.

Now, a new potential customer, Jennifer, contacted your sales team via Instagram DMs. In this case, your team can communicate with the new prospect directly in Salesforce via an omnichannel synchronized chat feature.

Lead generation & capture

Leads in Salesforce can also be imported from a spreadsheet or via an integration with messaging and scheduling apps such as Slack and Calendly.

Once a prospect has been captured, Salesforce automatically creates a lead profile for them and your sales reps can move on with lead qualification and routing.

2. Lead qualification & routing

Your Sales rep’s ultimate goal is to convert the lead into an opportunity or disqualify them as someone who is currently not interested in your product.

To help you on this mission, lead management in Salesforce is powered by lead queues which go hand-in-hand with lead assignment rules. The assignment rules determine how leads are sorted to specific sales reps or queues.

Using queues, your team can sort prospects based on various qualities, such as where they are in the conversion process, how hard they are to convert, or even organize leads by territory and business vertical.

Backtracking to our example, say Jennifer asks if you can customize your product to tailor it to her corporate style. Immediately, this qualifies her as a hard-to-convert customer in the B2B sector, and her profile is placed in a queue for experienced sales reps.

Additionally, Salesforce can help your sales team score leads based on your own criteria. Once you’ve decided on the factors you’re going to score, you can set up Salesforce to keep track of the score for each individual factor and the total score.

In the example below, we grade Jennifer by Budget, Authority, Need, and Timing, and then calculate the Total Score.

3. Tracking, monitoring, and nurturing leads

Salesforce provides advanced lead management tools that seamlessly track marketing and sales performance, offering instant visual reports. Your sales team can track prospects across various metrics, including:

  • Number of emails sent
  • Number of customer replies
  • Email open rates
  • Bounce rates
  • Click-through rates.

Also, Salesforce’s lead and opportunity dashboards provide a clear view into the vitality of your lead management process. You can craft reports and dashboards to your liking by using Salesforce built-in features or integrating third-party solutions from AppExchange.

Back to our example, managed by your top sales reps and tracked across the funnel using powerful Salesforce capabilities, Jennifer is successfully converted, becoming one of the featured customers for your brand.

However, that is not the end of the story: Salesforce can be used to automate your future interaction with your customers, sending personalized emails, scheduling phone calls, and providing relevant content to Jennifer, nurturing her into a loyal customer and your brand’s ambassador.

Tracking, monitoring, and nurturing leads

6 Best Practices for Salesforce Lead Management

While incorporating Salesforce lead management won’t grant you instant god-like status, it is a powerful tool that can greatly improve your sales process. It won’t magically solve all your issues with the press of a button, though. You still need to put in the effort!

It’s how well you take advantage of Salesforce features – that is what gives you the edge. So, how do you improve your lead management in Salesforce? Let us provide you with 6 best practices from Coherent Salesforce consultants:

1. Build dashboards to track your sales team’s success

Salesforce’s dashboards can give you a birds-eye view of the lead management process, including the number of prospects in each stage, sales cycle length, and deal size.

Build dashboards to track your sales team’s success

Here are some basic KPIs to get you started:

  • Lead-to-opportunity conversion rate: shows the agility of leads transforming into opportunities.
  • The win/loss ratio: represents the ratio of successfully closed deals to the number of lost deals.
  • Lead capture performance: shows lead sources and marketing campaigns that provide the most qualified leads.
  • Sales cycle duration: the average time it takes for a lead to progress from a prospect to a converted customer.
  • Sales funnel vitals: Tracking the quantity, value, and other characteristics of leads at various stages in your sales pipeline.

2. Automate lead routing to enhance performance & agility

Manually assigning leads can be a deal-breaker for sales reps, especially when it comes to high volumes of inbound prospects. Their valuable time can be better spent qualifying and converting leads.

Automate lead routing to enhance performance & agility

The built-in Salesforce lead assignment rules are a great starting point. Putting more effort in, you can set up round-robin lead assignment rules. Better yet, you can create even more advanced lead routing using Salesforce Flow builder.

3. Use segmentation and target more qualified leads

Maximize your team’s productivity and increase closed deals by strategically managing your Salesforce leads and focusing on the most promising ones. Salesforce enables you to:

  • Categorize Leads: segment leads based on their demographics, behavior, engagement level, etc.
  • Develop and implement targeted campaigns that truly resonate with specific lead segments.

4. Use automation and integrations to power up and accelerate

Use automation and integrations to power up and accelerate

Salesforce Flow lets you automate by creating workflows (flows) that streamline routine tasks. For instance, you can use flows to automatically notify a sales rep when an opportunity reaches the “Demo” stage.

You can also set up a flow to schedule the Demo call, sending a personalized message and adding the event to your calendar.

When it comes to boosting productivity for sales teams, integrations are just as important as automation. Connecting all your favorite tools into one workspace makes lead management more convenient and maximizes your performance.

Salesforce can be integrated with a variety of tools & platforms:

  • Scheduling platforms such as Calendly.
  • Collaboration and communication apps: Notion, Slack, Zoom, and others.
  • Marketing tools: ActiveCampaign, HubSpot, and others.
  • Customer support platforms: Zendesk, Active Campaign, and others
  • Data enhancing tools like, Zapier, Clearbit, and ZoomInfo.
  • Documents, storage, and sharing solutions: Typeform, DocuSign, Dropbox, and others
  • Billing and invoicing platforms: QuickBooks, Stripe, and much more.
  • Sales automation software: Salesloft, Gong, and others.

5. Keep your leads engaged in-between meetings

Sales reps should try to form meaningful connections with prospects by sharing helpful content such as guides, tips, industry research, and other resources. This not only helps leads combat their daily challenges but also establishes your company as a reliable and trustworthy partner.

Keep your leads engaged in-between meetings

Salesforce can help you in this endeavor with:

  • Multi-channel engagement: you may engage prospects through various channels such as social media, email, webinars, and others to create and maintain meaningful connections.
  • Personalized Content: Salesforce allows you to customize content to meet the lead’s individual interests, demands, and preferences.
  • Feedback Loops: Salesforce keeps you on the pulse, allowing you to refine and optimize your lead nurturing strategy by analyzing customer feedback.

6. Take advantage of AI for smarter lead management

Salesforce’s AI tool, Einstein, can take your lead management to another level. Use it for:

  • Enhanced lead scoring: identify patterns and indicators that human agents may overlook, resulting in more targeted and effective lead scoring.
  • Predicting lead behavior: anticipate the needs of your prospects and tailor the lead management strategy for increased chances of conversion.
  • Automated recommendations: suggest personalized products or content based on the lead’s behavior and interaction history, with little to no involvement of your sales team.


With its strategic and methodical approach, Salesforce has the power to revolutionize the way you manage leads. By employing the best Salesforce lead management practices, you can enhance lead quality, increase conversions, and power up your business’ evolution.

However, as a wise man once said, winning deals should not be the only target when aiming to successfully manage leads in Salesforce. Automation and productivity are key, but never forget how real connections with prospects lead many startups to acquire unicorn status.

Winning the customer’s respect and loyalty is the sure way to score thousands of new clients. So refine your strategy, but save a spot for the human element as well!

Augment your Salesforce experience with Coherent Solutions

Our team can help you build custom solutions to harness the most out of Salesforce’s cutting-edge technology and create efficient workflows, make room for informed decisions, and engage your customers like never before.

But wait! We are not just developers; we are also consultants. It means we’re ready to share our Salesforce acumen and ideate on how to improve your sales and lead management processes.

Find out what we can do with Salesforce, or contact us right now to engage our expert developers to deliver a custom Salesforce solution that will give you the edge you need to conquer the market.


  • What is lead management strategy?

    A strong lead management strategy involves applying the best practices for tracking and nurturing leads through various stages of the sales funnel. Additionally, a lead management strategy involves analyzing data to find innovative ways of optimizing lead generation and conversion.

  • How do you set up lead management in Salesforce?

    To set up lead management in Salesforce, follow these steps:

    Create a custom lead object by navigating to Setup > Object Manager > Lead > Fields & Relationships.

    Define the necessary fields for leads, such as name, company, contact information, etc.

    Customize the lead page layout by adding and arranging the fields according to your preference.

    Configure lead assignment rules to automatically assign leads to the right sales representatives based on criteria like location, lead source, industry, etc.

    Set up lead qualification by configuring lead status values and mapping them to specific stages in your sales process.

    Enable lead conversion to convert qualified leads into accounts, contacts, and opportunities.

    Configure lead queues to distribute leads among team members and ensure timely follow-up.

    Implement lead scoring to prioritize and focus on the most promising leads based on predefined criteria.

    Utilize automation tools like workflows, process builder, or triggers to automate lead-related processes, such as sending follow-up emails or creating tasks.

    Finally, train your sales team on how to effectively manage leads using Salesforce and provide ongoing support as needed.

Share article

Get a Free Consultation with Our Experts!

Simply fill out our contact form below, and we will reach out to you within 1 business day to schedule a free 1-hour consultation covering platform selection, budgeting, and project timelines.

This field is required. Maximum 100 characters.
This field is required. Maximum 100 characters.
This field is required.
Only digits are applicable.
Maximum 2000 characters.
* Required field

An error occurred sending your message.
Try again or contact us via

Message sent!

Here's what happens next:

  1. Our sales rep will contact you within 1 day to discuss your case in more detail.
  2. Next, we will arrange a free 1-hour consultation with our experts on platform selection, budgeting, and timelines.
  3. After that, we’ll need 1-2 weeks to prepare a proposal, covering solutions, team requirements, cost & time estimates.
  4. Once approved, we will launch your project within 1-2 weeks.