A Gap In The Sales Pipeline: Business Development Vs. Sales

Business development and sales are lumped together. It is no wonder many individuals confuse the business development and sales concept. The ultimate goal of the sales is to generate revenue for the business. It is considered the most important department for the business to generate revenues. 

In contrast, business development will not focus on revenue generation. It helps the company build a product-market relationship which is the ground for the sales. Business development is an integral part of the sales process. Without the business development finding, the ideal customer for your product or services will be challenging. 

Business development is a function of an organization that involves generating leads and converting them into customers. It aims to increase your company’s revenue, which you get from these new clients or prospects over time, with good service because they keep coming back.

Sales development focuses on cultivating existing client relationships or business relationships to maximize all opportunities while also enhancing brand awareness among potential consumers. Business Development helps grow business. We shall take a closer look at business development vs. sales.

What Is Business Development

The process of identifying prospects who can benefit from your company's products or services is known as business development. This often involves conducting research, networking with other businesses in similar fields (gaining knowledge), developing strategic planning to help expand its reach into new markets.

Sales Business development and business development are the two prospects responsible for building a relationship with the existing client and generating revenues via strategic partnership, marketing efforts, and more. 

The business development goal is to identify the ideal potential prospects and connect with them to explore sales opportunities. The primary goal of the business developer is to build a relationship with the ideal new prospects to find opportunities and convert them into loyal customers. 

What Is Sales Development

Sales development is similar to business development, but it focuses on selling current products or services. Sales development is the specific team within the sales teams. The goal of the sales development function is to identify, engage and bring qualified leads into your sales pipeline. You need a sales team to generate transactions and close deals with qualified leads to succeed at sales.


Sales development reps typically work within a specific department or division of a company. Sales professionals are responsible for identifying potential customers and developing a relationship with them to repeat buyers. 

Sales are the process of finding a buyer for a product or service. It involves identifying an opportunity that aligns with your offering, qualifying it, presenting it, negotiating the deal, and following up after the sale.

Here is how business development differs from sales:

Sales and business development are two sides of the same coin. Both activities ultimately lead to the generation of revenue.  However, some key differences between the two are.

1. Sales focuses on selling a product or service to the customer. In other words, sales are all about closing deals that are short-term.

The goal of business development is to make the business grow and service in long term. The business development team needs to build a long-term relationship with potential customers, which will lead to multiple sales opportunities.

2. Sales deals with tangible results, such as closing deals and earning commissions. In contrast, the business development needs to focus on future expansion of the product or service market what, where, how. The primary goal of business development is growing business.

Business Development vs. Sales Development

Business Development vs. Sales Development
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The terms "business development" and "sales development" are sometimes used interchangeably. However, they serve different functions in a sales organization.

A business development representative (BDR) is responsible for identifying new opportunities, qualifying them, and closing deals. They usually work closely with other salespeople to do so.

A sales development representative (SDR) works directly with customers to close deals. This role requires a deep understanding of customers' businesses and industries and effectively communicating with them.

Business development representatives and sales development reps have a lot in common, but there are also important differences. Business wants to close details, and the ultimate aim of both the BDR & SDR is to move their qualified leads into the sales pipeline. 

The responsibilities of a  business development expert or business development person are to prospect cold leads (Focus on the outbounds), and SDR will qualify warm (Inbound side). The sales development representative performs in-depth qualifying on potential clients. 

Both the roles involve reaching, identifying potential leads, engaging the prospect with proactive outreaches, developing a connection, qualifying leads, lead nurturing, and more. 

The world of sales is all about closing deals. After qualifying leads, the sales reps take the next step, begin the negotiations, and close the deal. The primary objective of both roles in the sales process is  "to close sales." 

Basics of Business Development

Business development is a multifaceted endeavor that extends across many departments. Sales, marketing, vendor management, project management, and product management. In business development, the marketers work with vendors to negotiate better prices or find new partners for their products. Cost-savings efforts are made through networking between these groups, which will also help improve efficiency. Business Development Activities extend into every corner of this vast organization. It isn't just limited to one function like sales would be otherwise.

All other departments in the organization are aligned and driven with the business development goals. For example, suppose your business product or service is successful in a specific region like the United States. In that case, the business development team's job is to expand the product/ services in other regions. After detailed research and studies, the business development professional will identify the new region where they can expand and start their marketing for their product or services.

Processes of qualifying leads by business development manager

Every business has its targeted customer to reach out to once the business development manager identifies their ideal prospects for selling their product or services. The most commonly used lead qualifying framework is known as BANT. BANT stands for:

Budget: Identifying whether the prospect has the available resources to invest. 

Authority: Does the potential target lead have the decision-making authority?

Needs: Does your business product or service offering solve the potential customer's problem.

Timeline: How shortly are the prospects looking to buy your product or service

Sales & Business Development Process 

Business development and sales are two different jobs and depart, but they work closely and rely on one another. These professionals work closely and interact for more customer acquisition or product conversion rates.

The business development team works along with the marketing department to identify the position of your products/services. Together these professionals evaluate industry trends, consumer expectations, technology advancements, and more. The marketing, business development, and sales process will follow some common steps.

1. Identifying the Value Proposition of Your Product or Service

The business development & sales departments collaborate to identify the most effective value proposition for the product or service. They will outline how it works, what problems clients can solve with this solution (and who will benefit from their offering). They will present those details with an appealing tone that wins the potential customers. It is good to maintain a professional tone all the time. 

2. Choosing the Most Suitable Marketing Channels

The marketing team is accountable for choosing the right sales channel to reach out to their potential customers. At this point, the sales team may work with business development professionals to identify which one has been most successful in connecting with potential prospects. They discover the options in particular channels to successfully connect with their potential buyers. They can identify through promoting your brand's message via social media posts on Facebook, email campaigns, ads, etc.

3. Outline Your Lead Generation Process

The marketing and the business development team will outline the entire lead generation process from contacting the customer to sales completion. The business development professionals share their detailed insight on researching and networking.  The detailed outline includes everything from how you'll reach out to potential customers, what they might need for their business or product idea to become a reality, and even specific steps on where best places are at which times of day certain outreach efforts should take place.

4. Connecting With Potential Customers

The marketing & sales team will start building strong relationships by connecting with the targeted customers through email campaigns, ads, social media posts, email newsletters, search engine optimization (SEO), blog posts, online ads, and more. 

The marketing team is the backbone of any business. They facilitate connections with customers through their campaigns and provide educational materials to help targeted customers understand your business offerings. The business development team focuses on activities such as connecting with potential clients by networking or cold calling and cold emailing while sending out targeted email messages to generate a list of qualified leads for future opportunities. 

5. Do Following up With Potential  Leads

The sales representative's work begins with identifying leads, which marketing professionals take care of. Communication with the value proposition with the potential buyers will lay a basis for a successful sale. The process has three steps: taking the initial step in contacting potential clients through social media or other marketing channels like cold-calling, guiding those people who have shown interest enough but don't know much about what you do yet to get them interested again after an introduction in the sales funnel, and finally closing deals once they've been convinced that your product will match their needs perfectly. 

6. Closing Sales Deals 

Sales representatives are responsible for handling customers throughout the sales process in a company. They interact with the customer. They pitch products, host a demo, follow up with the interested customer, negotiate package prices using various methods appropriate at each stage under consideration (eagerly awaiting an answer while holding off until it becomes necessary), close deals via sales calls/meetings. We need to have satisfied clients and want them to come back again. 

7. After-Sales Following up With Customers

The best way to contact buyers and keep their loyalty is by using various strategies. Sales representatives constantly have to connect with the potential buyers via email or phone calls, and social media posts are more important. It is good to maintain constant conversations about the product after-sales like welcome email, abundant cart, tutorial, educational, webinars, etc. Your sales executive can discuss clients’ interests apart from the sales pitch, creating a chance for interaction between buyer/seller(s) about the business offerings. The realistic objective or goal here needs to turn new customers into loyal repeat shoppers who will bring friends along next time through referral programs. Nearly 81% of the buyers trust their peers or recommendation from the trusted source than the business marketing during their buying decision process. So referral programs through your loyal customer help your business to gain more new quality leads on the sales pipelines. 

Artificial Intelligence (AI) In Business Development & Sales

Artificial intelligence (AI) in business development will boost business revenue,  enhance the client experience, and improve productivity. After understanding the customer's requirement, you can use the artificial intelligence tool to automate the process. It will help the business development team improve their productivity and help to reduce the operational cost without sacrificing the quality. 

Business processes in the modern world are so complex that it would be inefficient for humans to carry them out. We can only achieve success through data-driven insights that help companies grow and become even more successful. 

Here are the best examples of artificial intelligence in business

Customer Service:

Business processes in the modern world are so complex that it would be inefficient for humans to carry them out. We can only achieve success through data-driven insights that help companies grow and become even more successful. 

AI in the business will help to improve your customer service with chatbots. It will provide real-time responses to customer queries and complaints. It reduces the company’s cost, and businesses can also provide 24/7 support. This will improve customer satisfaction. The best example of customer support using AI is Amazon, It uses customer support chatbots.

Business Intelligence :

Marketing insights are the new way of thinking for marketers and their teams. With the help of new marketing insights, companies can understand their customers better and create tailored experiences for every individual. Marketing insights enable your business to create tailored experiences for every customer. Implementing customized experiences that will make every customer feel like an individual.

Personalized Marketing :

Marketing with AI can reduce marketing costs by as much as 50%. Using customers' online activities (Or customer behavior) are used to predict and target who will buy a particular product. It's easy for the marketer to target the particular product or service with the prospects. 

Grow your business with AI cold outreach and copywriting software. It saves the marketer's time and gets your work done on time. One such tool every business needs to have is artificial intelligence-based outreach software. Using Smartwriter AI you can grow your business faster using AI personalized automated email outreaches for the potential leads that get more response and conversion. Start using AI tools for outreach email personalization today. 

Smartwriter  AI personalized automated email outreaches

Artificial Intelligence is the future, and it's time to use this revolutionary technology. Artificial Intelligence AI has limitless benefits that help the company or industry gain incredible outcomes.


Social Media Content Creation for Branding:

Created social media content is a vital part of any marketing campaign. The key to successfully creating content relay with creativity, educational content, graphic design, copywriting for different platforms like  Facebook posts, Linkedin, Twitter, and more.

Using Smartwriter.AI personalised LinkedIn lead gen chrome extension your business can start scraping thousands of quality leads from the LinkedIn Sales Navigator (Which has more than 500M+ profiles) free of cost. 

With the Smartwriter application, you can scrap qualified leads from LinkedIn, verify the email addresses of the leads and deeply enrich your hyper-personalized outreach with the prospect’s data such as company data, education, location, experience, podcasts, news, article, case studies, and more. With this rich data, you can create personalized email and follow-up sequences and can jump into a lead call that will get impact and increase sales conversion. 


Sales and business development are two very different things. Sales are the process of generating leads, nurturing them until they become customers, closing deals with those prospects.  It's all about driving revenue through new business acquisitions. In contrast, business development is more focused on helping existing clients grow their businesses by providing consulting services or training that can help solve an issue or improve a client’s bottom line. 

Business Development and Sales are two different jobs that often work well together to achieve the same goal. The key is understanding what each job entails so that you can plan for success in your company's sales pipeline. Before investing in business development resources, it is important that you know how much new business you want to generate and handle. This will allow the investment of time or money for your organization's growth with success rates. 

Artificial intelligence (AI) has been an integral part of both business development and sales domains that will provide proven results, but it may be worth considering how AI will provide you with a greater impact on your business development or sales process. Started on building a successful marketing campaign today with Smartwriter AI

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