Cold calling is a popular sales tactic used by businesses of all sizes to reach out to potential customers and generate leads. It is a great way to build relationships and increase sales, but it can be difficult to measure its success.
In this article, we will take a look at some cold call statistics to help you better understand how effective cold calling can be for your business. We will explore the success rate of cold calls, how long it takes to reach a decision-maker, and the best time of day to make cold calls. Additionally, we will discuss the impact of technology on cold calling, and how to use data to improve your cold call success rate. We hope that after reading this article, you will have a better understanding of how to make the most of your cold calling efforts.
Cold Call: The Most Important Statistics
Companies that don’t believe in the effectiveness of cold calling experience 42% less growth than companies that do.
Asking “How have you been?” during the cold call increases the success rate by 6.6x.
General cold call statistics
It takes an average of 8 call attempts to reach a prospect and once you have a qualified lead, 20% of them will convert into a sale.
It takes an average of 1.5 hours of cold calling per day for 5 days to win one appointment.
One study found that sales reps in B2B tech should average at least 60 calls per day as a benchmark to improve the chances of booking meetings. But they manage to make only 35 calls per day, which is only around half of the benchmark.
The average sales representative makes 52 calls every day, while B2B technology sales reps average 35 calls per day.
According to Close, 48% of sales reps fear making cold calls and consider cold calling a bad time at work.
Over 30% of leads never receive a follow-up call after initial contact.
When cold-calling, 55% of contacts will not answer, 17% of contacts’ information will be incorrect, and only 28% will answer the call. Of those who answer, 82% of buyers agree to set up meetings after being cold-called.
Cold calling is used by criminals who prey on the elderly and the vulnerable. This gives cold calling a bad reputation. In the UK, over 65s with savings in excess of £10,000 are 3.5x as likely to fall victim to investment fraud.
Almost 70 million US citizens have lost money to phone scams in 2022, with a total financial loss of nearly 40 billion USD.
Benefits of cold calls
Companies that don’t believe in the effectiveness of cold calling experience 42% less growth than companies that do believe in it, as stated by Zippia.
27% of sales reps believe making phone calls to new contacts is an extremely effective prospecting strategy.
69% of buyers have accepted at least one phone call from a salesperson in the past year.
Cold calling is an effective strategy in B2B sales, as many executives prefer that salespeople contact them by phone. The upside to cold calls is the personalized solutions and ease of follow-up. When done correctly, it helps improve B2B sales and to understand the requirements as well as the challenges of a prospective buyer.
More than half (57%) of C-level executives prefer that salespeople contact them by phone.
51% of directors and 47% of managers prefer to be contacted by phone.
Main problems with the cold call strategy
63% of salespeople say cold calling is what they dislike most about their jobs.
Less than 1% of cold calls lead to a sale.
42% of sales reps feel they do not have the right information before making a sales call. 41% of salespeople claim they get leads that are too difficult to reach, and 37% say marketing gives them poor-quality leads.
Email marketing is 2x more effective than cold calling. As 80% of buyers prefer that salespeople contact them by email.
25% of the information in B2B databases is incorrect.
According to Salesforce, less than 2% of cold calls resulted in a meeting, while a study by Baylor University found that only for every 209 calls made, only 1 appointment or referral was set.
42% of sales representatives feel they don’t have enough information before making a call.
80% of calls end up going to voicemail.
While this tactic is effective, 63% of salespeople say that cold calling is what they dislike most about their jobs, according to Zippia.
Success rates of cold calls
The average cold call success rate is 2%. Depending on the cold calling script you use, you can increase it up to 10%.
Out of 100 cold calls, a sales development representative can expect at least 2 calls that convert into warm leads.
Asking “How have you been?” during the cold call increases the success rate by 6.6x.
In successful sales calls, salespeople do slightly more talking (55%) than the prospect (45%).
Salespeople responding to leads within the first 5 minutes see a 100x increase in contact rates.
Salespeople increase the chance of booking meetings in a cold call by using collaborative language like ‘our’ (55% increase) and ‘we’ (35% increase).
Successful cold calls, on average, last 1:36 minutes longer than unsuccessful ones.
A prospect is 12% more likely to show up for a 30-minute meeting than a 60-minute one.
How do buyers feel about cold calls?
49% of buyers prefer to be contacted through a cold call. 69% of buyers accepted one or more cold calls from a salesperson in the past year.
82% of buyers accept meetings when salespeople reach out to them.
82% of B2B decision makers think sales reps are unprepared.
Only 13% of customers believe a salesperson understands their needs.
82% of buyers look up providers on LinkedIn before they respond to their outreach efforts.
82% of all buyers say that a company is more trustworthy if it has a social media profile, and 77% say they are more likely to buy from a company whose CEO is on social media.
49% of buyers prefer initial contact via a cold call. This number increases to 54% for technology buyers, which is higher than financial (40%) and professional (50%) services buyers.
Cold calls best practices
It’s better to place calls to a small number of highly qualified prospects (around 30-40 prospects), in which case you can block 1 hour in the morning and 1 hour in the evening to call them twice.
Leading with a common connection is powerful, and can increase the likelihood of an appointment by 70%, according to LinkedIn.
93% of the success of your cold call comes down to the tone of your voice.
Making cold calls on Wednesdays is 50% more effective in terms of a lead answering the phone than making calls on Mondays.
Successful sales reps use the word ‘we’ 65% more times.
Win rates are 10% higher when pricing is discussed on the first call.
Mentioning a common connection on a cold call can increase the likelihood of an appointment by 70%.
Cold calling between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. (according to your prospect’s time zone) is found to be 71% more effective as these are high connection times. Calling between 11 a.m. and 12 p.m. is the second-best option.
According to Zippia, 84% of buyers are influenced mainly by recommendations from friends and family. 91% of customers say they’d give referrals, which is the most effective tool salespeople have for cold calling.
Common mistakes in cold calling
Opening with “Did I catch you at a bad time?” makes you 40% less likely to book a meeting.
Top-performing salespeople pause 5 times more than average reps after listening to objections. Unsuccessful reps might feel agitated after receiving objections and tend to interrupt customers during the call. Keep your cool while handling objections, always.
Half of the buyers could use a second cold call from salespeople. Despite this need, 50% of salespeople never cold-call leads a second time. And the remainder only makes two cold-calling attempts before giving up.
80% of sales require 5 follow-up calls after the initial meeting. However, 44% of sales representatives give up after 1 follow-up.
At least eight out of ten people reached via cold calling say they prefer not to engage in discussions
The majority of people contacted through cold calling are not interested in engaging in discussions, which could be a sign that cold calling is not an effective way to reach potential customers.
The best time to make cold calls is between 4:00 pm and 5:00 pm.
Knowing the best time to make cold calls can help businesses maximize their success rate when reaching out to potential customers. This information can be invaluable in helping businesses make the most of their cold calling efforts.
It takes an average of 18 dials to connect with a decision-maker through cold calling
This highlights the importance of persistence and resilience when it comes to cold calling, as it can be a long and arduous process. It also serves as a reminder that success in cold calling is not guaranteed, and that it requires a great deal of effort and dedication.
48% of the best-performing sales reps make at least 6 or more cold calls per day
The best-performing sales reps are dedicating a significant portion of their time to cold calls, suggesting that cold calls are a key factor in their success. This statistic is a valuable insight for anyone looking to improve their sales performance, as it suggests that making more cold calls is a key step in achieving success.
85% of cold calls go to voicemail, with only a 3% callback rate
Thus, the vast majority of cold calls are going unanswered, with only a miniscule fraction of those calls being returned. This paints a bleak picture for cold callers, as it suggests that their efforts are largely going to waste.
70% of salespeople give up after their first cold call attempt
This serves as a warning to those who are considering cold calling as a sales strategy, and highlights the need for a well-thought-out plan and a strong commitment to success.
57% of C-level executives prefer cold calls over other sales methods
Cold calls are a preferred method of communication for those in the highest positions of power, and that they are seen as a reliable and successful way to reach potential customers. This makes cold calls an invaluable tool for any business looking to make sales and build relationships with their target audience.
Sales reps spend 15% of their time leaving voice messages as a result of cold calling
A significant portion of a sales rep's time is devoted to leaving voice messages, which can be a laborious and time-consuming task. This statistic is a reminder of the dedication and hard work that goes into cold calling, and serves as a reminder of the importance of this sales technique.
Only 2% of cold calls lead to an appointment or follow-up conversation
This highlights the need for businesses to be strategic and creative in their approach to cold calling in order to maximize their chances of success.
Cold calling is still a useful and effective sales tool, but it's important to understand the statistics behind it. The data shows that cold calling is more successful when done in the afternoon, and that the success rate increases with the number of calls made. It's also important to note that cold calling can be a time-consuming activity, and that the success rate can vary significantly depending on the industry. With the right strategy and approach, cold calling can be a great way to generate leads.
Cognism: “The Top Cold Calling Success Rates for 2023 Explained”, cited February 2023. (Source)
KlentySoft: “31 Cold Calling Statistics to Boost Your Sales Strategy in 2023”, cited February 2023. (Source)
Fit Small Business: “17 Cold-calling Statistics to Know Before Picking Up the Phone”, cited February 2023. (Source)
LinkedIn: “Cold Calling Tips & Techniques”, cited February 2023. (Source)
Zippia: “25+ AMAZING COLD CALLING SUCCESS STATISTICS : DATA, TRENDS, OPINIONS AND MORE”, cited February 2023. (Source)
ZoomInfo: “21 Important B2B Cold Calling Statistics”, cited February 2023. (Source)
ResourcefulSelling: “43 cold calling statistics that will rock your sales world”, cited February 2023. (Source)
HubSpot: “23 Cold Calling Statistics That May Surprise You (2022)”, cited February 2023. (Source)
ServiceBell: “53 Cold Calling Statistics - Do Cold Calls Still Work?”, cited February 2023. (Source)
Ofcom: “Cold call investment scams”, cited February 2023. (Source)
CNBC: “How phone scammers tricked Americans out of tens of billions of dollars in 2022”, cited February 2023. (Source)
Salesforce: “Is cold calling still effective?”, cited February 2023. (Source)
Selling Signals: “Top 60 Cold Calling Statistics for Prospecting Success 2022”, cited February 2023. (Source)
Close: “20+ Cold Calling Statistics to Inform Your Sales Calls”, cited February 2023. (Source)
ZipDo, cited June 2023: Cold Call Statistics