A Sales Qualified Lead, often abbreviated as SQL, is a prospective customer that has been researched and vetted initially by the marketing department and then by the sales team, and is deemed ready for the next stage in the sales process. In essence, an SQL is a potential buyer who has moved beyond the initial attraction phase, has engaged with a company’s marketing efforts, and has shown a clear intent to make a purchase. This determination is typically made after the lead has taken certain actions that indicate a strong interest, such as filling out a contact form, downloading a white paper, requesting a product demo, or asking specific questions about the product or service. The criteria for qualifying a lead as an SQL can vary from company to company but generally include factors like the lead’s fit with the target market, the budget, the authority to make a purchase decision, the need for the product or service, and the timeline for purchasing. Once a lead is classified as an SQL, it is passed on to the sales team, who will then engage in more direct and personalized follow-up actions with the goal of closing a sale.