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Sales Capacity Model: How Many Inbound Leads Can One SDR Handle?

All salespeople love it and need it: Inbound leads generated by the marketing team.

For every Sales Development Representative and/or Account Executive a constant flow of high-quality inbound leads is vital. In several other blog posts, we describe how you can generate more leads and how your sales team can convert these leads the easiest and fastest into meetings and opportunities.

In this blog post, we will show you how many leads one sales development representative ideally can and should handle. And how you as a sales development leader can report the needs back to your marketing team.

The questions we got often asked by CMOs, CROs, and Heads of Marketing, as well as Heads of Sales Development, are the following:

How many inbound leads can one Sales Development Representative (SDR) handle?
How many MQLs does marketing need to deliver so that my sales development team has enough work?

The challenges a lot of Marketing, Sales, and Revenue Leaders ask themselves is what is a good number of inbound leads for one Sales Development Representative?

These Service Level Agreements between Marketing and Sales Development are essential for revenue success and team satisfaction.

Here is the answer to your inbound capacity planning:

What to know first! 👇

  1. The better the generated marketing qualified leads fit the ideal customer profile to more likely it will be for the Sales Development Team to work successfully with these leads.

  2. We suggest leads be at least pre-verified by the marketing team and fulfill the following criteria - phone number known and validated - company known - persona known - and more if you'd like

  3. No admin work in uploading leads to CRM is required for the SDR team, all leads are already in the right way in the internal CRM system (e.g. Hubspot, Pipedrive etc.)

  4. Calling and emailing will be done directly out of the CRM system

  5. A clear structure for SDRs in terms of tasks and new leads coming in so that SDRs can focus on getting work done

  6. Assuming one Inbound MQL gets touched 8 times

Capacity Planning

  1. One SDR can handle around 15 new Marketing Qualified Leads per Day

  2. One SDR can and should do around 10-30 manual activities per hour

We tested out what we can do in one hour with the help of automation in Hubspot:

Hubspot Sales Activities

Calculate it yourself

With our inbound capacity planner for marketing and SDR teams, you can calculate your needs based on certain metrics like the # of SDRs you have, the # of touches you want to have per SDR, and the time each SDR should focus on leads.

Inbound Capacity Calculator

Reach out to us in case you have any questions. (

Here are some more resources that might help you: 👇


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