Put another way, you want to ask yourself: do they have a very clear need and use for your product or service?
Without a clear necessity, the likelihood of them buying from you is lowered significantly. One of the top priorities of any salesperson is to quickly determine is a prospect has such a need.
During discovery, salespeople ask probing questions such as:
- What is the magnitude of your problem?
- Have you tried to solve it before?
- What happens if it can't be properly solved?
If the answers to these questions are blanket statements, they do not have a need for your product or service just yet. The probability of you being able to nurture them into a closed and won deal has decreased.
Qualified prospects typically need you to help them solve their problems quickly. They have very clear goals in mind when answering such questions, as they are very aware of what they need. Sometimes they're aware but they might be unclear on the timeline, so circling back is not a bad idea. Keeping them separate from your unqualified prospects to re-contact in the future will help you build a pipeline later on.
When asking these questions, then, you're looking for very specific and detailed answers about their pain points. Keep an ear out to see if they mention problems or dissatisfaction with their current product or situation. You can further prompt them to divulge more, as it will help you differentiate yourself from the competition too.
After all, if they're that unhappy, then they're almost ready for a change!