How to Get the Most Out of LinkedIn Sales Navigator in 2021

LinkedIn has been around for less than two decades, but it’s already changed the way we sell.

Social media has created new channels for sales reps to conduct research on prospective customers, connect with leads, and build relationships. This new sales strategy is known as social selling, and the numbers show that when it works, it works.

According to LinkedIn data, salespeople who use social media in their sales prospecting are 51% more likely to achieve their quota and they outsell non-social sellers by 78%. Social selling is quickly becoming a favorite prospecting channel for sales reps and LinkedIn is their social media platform of choice.

LEARN MORE: Is social selling killing your LinkedIn strategy? See another side of the coin and make a decision for yourself.

If you’re just starting out with LinkedIn Sales Navigator, or maybe you’re trying to decide if you’re ready to pay for a subscription, this guide will help you find the right plan for you, walk you through the basics of setting up your Sales Navigator account, and allow you to read real reviews from current Sales Navigator users.

What is LinkedIn Sales Navigator?

LinkedIn Sales Navigator is a sales intelligence tool that allows salespeople to establish and nurture relationships with prospects on LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network with more than 722 million active users.

LinkedIn Sales Navigator helps reps find the right contacts at the right companies, saving them time and effort they’d normally spend hunting down contact information. This robust tool also generates and sends automated alerts directly to ensure they’ll never miss an opportunity to connect with a warm lead or interested consumer.

With so many businesses remaining remote well into 2021, LinkedIn Sales Navigator can be an incredibly powerful tool for anyone looking to master the art of social selling. Sales professionals can easily connect with prospects anywhere in the world, even if they don’t have their contact information, and start forming the connections that close deals.

DID YOU KNOW? LinkedIn offers a one-month free trial for Sales Navigator so you can learn how to use the tool effectively before spending your own money on it.

How much does LinkedIn Sales Navigator cost?

LinkedIn Sales Navigator offers three subscription options at different prices, giving you the power to choose the plan that best fits your business. Each of these subscription plans can be paid annually or month-to-month, and users can cancel at any time.

Here’s a breakdown of how much each subscription costs and the features included with each:

Professional Plan

The Professional Plan is for individual sales reps who are looking to supercharge their sales outreach, increase pipeline, and close more deals. It costs $64.99 per month or a one-time annual payment of $779.88.

Features included in the Professional Plan:

  • 20 InMail messages per month
  • 1,500 saved leads
  • See who’s viewed your profile
  • Extended LinkedIn network access
  • Advanced lead and company search
  • Lead and account recommendations
  • Custom lists and territory preferences
  • Lead and account alerts
  • Outlook Web integration
  • Notes and tags
  • Sales Navigator Learning Center
  • LinkedIn Learning and Premium Career
  • Sales Navigator mobile app

Team Plan

The Team Plan is for sales teams who want to harness the power of their shared network to build client relationships. It costs $103.33 per month or a one-time annual payment of $1,240 per license.

Features included in the Team Plan include all features from Professional Plan as well as:

  • Unlimited Smart Links
  • 10 additional InMail messages per month (30 total)
  • 3,500 additional saved leads (5,000 total)
  • Team network warm introductions with TeamLink
  • Organic marketing alerts and CRM integrations
  • Sharing Custom Lists
  • Basic license management and usage reporting
  • Volume and multi-year discounts
  • Invoicing
  • A dedicated relationship manager

Enterprise Plan

The Enterprise Plan is for large sales organizations who want to take full advantage of LinkedIn and their expanded company network to build client relationships. Pricing for this plan is not featured on the LinkedIn Sales Navigator page and will require talking to a representative at LinkedIn for more information.

Features included in the Enterprise Plan include all features from Team Plan as well as:

  • 20 additional InMail messages per month (50 total)
  • 5,000 additional saved leads (10,000 total)
  • Company network warm introductions with TeamLink Extend
  • Contact creation and data validation for CRM
  • Sponsored Marketing Alerts
  • Single sign-on integrations
  • Enterprise-grade license management
  • Analytics Integration for Usage Data
  • LinkedIn Elevate Alerts

Note: Some of the features Listed in each plan require customers to have access to additional tools and software. Head over the to the LinkedIn Sales Navigator pricing page for the full details.

LinkedIn Premium vs. Sales Navigator

If you’re familiar with LinkedIn’s seller solutions, you might be wondering how Sales Navigator is different from LinkedIn Premium. While both options are paid versions of the LinkedIn platform, they each target different job functions.

  • LinkedIn Premium is used primarily by recruiters, HR departments, and jobseekers to connect with each other about open positions and roles. LinkedIn Premium includes a subscription to LinkedIn learning and other tools for helping job seekers land their next role.
  • LinkedIn Sales Navigator is designed specifically for sales professionals looking to make connections with prospective customers. With Sales Navigator, sales reps can reach out directly to contacts at their target companies and send InMail messages to them without having to be connected.

While both of these platforms offer powerful tools, there is a time and place for each. Take the time to carefully compare each of these solutions against each other (and against your company needs) before deciding which to purchase.

LEARN MORE: Want to build a strong digital presence? Use these seven tips to build a strong LinkedIn profile strategy.

What is LinkedIn Sales Insights?

LinkedIn Sales Insights is a new tool from LinkedIn that works directly alongside Sales Navigator to help sales operations managers and sales leaders plan their go-to-market strategy. Sales Insights gives your sales operations team access to millions of real-time data points on customers and prospects. These insights help revenue organizations make smarter, more informed decisions regarding their go-to-market sales strategy, sales forecasting, and more.

With LinkedIn Sales Insights, sales organizations can:

  • Connect their CRM and other marketing technology directly to LinkedIn Sales Insights
  • Build custom reports that can inform key sales planning questions for your business
  • View and compare growth and sales activity metrics for target users and buyers

LinkedIn Sales Insights gives your revenue organization a clearer picture of which accounts are growing fast, which need a little extra love, and gives access to unique user data that helps sales leaders more effectively forecast sales targets and revenue goals.

How to Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator

LinkedIn Sales Navigator is one of the most powerful sales intelligence tools on the market today because of the immense data LinkedIn has on hand. And while this data is crucial for sales reps looking to hit revenue targets, it can be overwhelming at first.

In this section, we’re going to outline the best practices for using LinkedIn Sales Navigator:

How to define your audience in LinkedIn Sales Navigator account

To start, head over to your account and set up your sales preferences. This section allows you to set specific lead criteria within your Sales Navigator account.

  • Start by hovering over the ‘Edits’ tab and select ‘Edit your sales preferences’ from the dropdown menu
  • Next, scroll down until you hit the Sales Preferences section and begin filling the fields in based on your target audience. This is the section where you can narrow down leads based on things like region, industry, job function, seniority level, and more.

Once you’ve completed that, you’re ready to start using the platform. LinkedIn Sales Navigator has tons of tools and features to help you accelerate your sales pipeline. But again, none of that matters unless you’re targeting the right people. Take your time with this step and really make sure you define your target audience.

TIP: Download the Sales Navigator App and never miss a key account alert again.

How to use Advanced Search filters in LinkedIn Sales Navigator

Advanced Search is a key selling point for Sales Navigator and likely where you’ll spend most of your time doing research on leads and prospects. Advanced Search has over 20 filters that sales reps can use to search for both individuals and businesses that fit their criteria.

These are some of the most popular search filters available for Sales Navigator:

  • Keywords: this filter helps you search for relevant keywords found in your prospects’ profiles regarding their company, job function, and more
  • Geographic location: this filter helps target prospects based on their specific location
  • Job title: this filter allows you to search for prospects based on their job title and/or role at the company, making it easier to reach decision-makers
  • Company size: this filter helps you target companies based on whether they’re a small, midsize, or enterprise company
  • Exclusions: this filter makes it easy to filter out leads based on criteria you know makes them a bad fit for your product.

One little known way to get the most out of Advanced Search is utilizing Boolean searches. A Boolean search is a type of search query that allows you to combine keywords with modifiers such as AND, NOT, OR, and quotation marks to generate a more accurate search result. A Boolean search allows you to narrow your search to a granular level, only targeting accounts that fit your specific criteria.

How to utilize Lists in LinkedIn Sales Navigator

Custom Lead Lists are another feature in Sales Navigator that allows you to manage and track all your communications in one place. Custom lists are a great way to organize your workflow with your contacts and team members, track lead activity data, and manage all of your sales outreach in a single dashboard. Although LinkedIn Sales Navigator does not offer features that let you export your lists, you could leverage LinkedIn automation for your outreach that helps with contact scraping, export leads to a CRM or a CSV and also find verified email ids of your prospects.

Here are some of the most common actions taken in Custom Lists and how to navigate them:

How to view a List in Sales Navigator:

  • Sign into your Sales Navigator account
  • Select ‘Lists’ from the navigation bar
  • From the dropdown menu that appears, select the List you’d like to view:
    • My network: Includes all your 1st-degree connections.
    • Lead Lists: Includes all saved individuals.
    • Account Lists: Includes all saved companies
  • From here, you can refine your search by selecting ‘My Network’ from the dropdown menu and using the additional filters.

How to create a new List in Sales Navigator:

  • Start on the Sales Navigator homepage, click ‘Lists,’ and select Lead Lists or Account Lists from the dropdown menu.
  • Select ‘Create Lead’ or ‘Create Account List’ depending on the type of List you’re trying to create
  • From there, a box will appear and you can input your lead information
  • Once the information is entered, finish by clicking the ‘Create’ button.

How to edit a custom List in Sales Navigator:

  • From the Sales Navigator homepage, click ‘Lists,’ and select the Lead Lists or Account Lists tab.
  • Select the List you’d like to edit
  • Select the pencil icon next to the List name and edit the List

How to sort a custom List in Sales Navigator:

  • Start by signing into your Sales Navigator account
  • Select ‘Lists’ from the navigation bar.
  • From the dropdown menu that appears, select the List page you’d like to view – Lead Lists page or Account Lists page.
  • On the Lists page you’ve selected, choose the column header you’d like to sort the List by (i.e. name, geographic location, account, etc.).
  • Click the column header to sort the complete Lead List or Account List.

How to delete a custom List in Sales Navigator:

  • From the Sales Navigator homepage, click Lists, and select Lead Lists or Account Lists from the dropdown that appears.
  • From the Lead Lists or Account Lists page, click the ‘…’ icon.
  • From the dropdown menu that appears, choose ‘Delete’.
  • In the box that appears, select if you’d like to:
    • Delete the list and keep saved leads/accounts
    • Delete the list and unsave leads/accounts
  • Select ‘Delete List’ to finalize your decision

How to share a custom List in Sales Navigator:

  • Click the Lists tab at the top of the Sales Navigator homepage and select Lead Lists or Account Lists from the dropdown.
  • On the Lead or Account Lists page, click Share to the right of the list you’d like to share.
  • You can also click on the Share button at the top right corner of the lead/account list page you select.
  • Once the user is alerted that a list is shared with them, they can view the list and collaborate with others using the Notes field, where you can set the visibility of notes to Private or Public.

You can only share lists with users on your dashboard. You can also only use this feature if you have a Team or Enterprise account. Sales Navigator Professional accounts do not support sharing custom lists in any capacity.

Other LinkedIn Sales Navigator training resources

Because LinkedIn Sales Navigator is such a robust tool, there’s a lot we couldn’t cover in this article. Luckily, there are tons of incredible resources online to help you get the most out of LinkedIn Sales Navigator. Here are a few of our favorites:

If your team has purchased the Team or Enterprise plan, that means you also have free access to hundreds of LinkedIn Learning Courses. There you can find topics covering the basics of LinkedIn Sales Navigator, learn more about how to craft effective LinkedIn InMail messages, and much more.

TIP: Does LinkedIn InMail actually work? Learn how you can use InMail for lead generation.

LinkedIn Sales Navigator reviews

LinkedIn Sales Navigator is an incredible asset to any sales team, but it doesn’t come without a hefty price tag. If you’re on the fence about making a purchase, reading reviews from real Sales Navigator users can give you an idea of whether or not your team is ready to invest.

To help you get the full picture, we’ve collected a handful of reviews highlighting some of the best features and biggest frustrations users have had using LinkedIn Sales Navigator. All of these reviews have been pulled from third-party review website G2 and are written by verified users of LinkedIn Sales Navigator.

Note: Some reviews have been edited for spelling, grammar, and clarity.

What users like

“It is very easy to find specific people before getting on a call with them. Their training team is incredibly helpful and showed us great ways to optimize our utilization of the tool to get more prospects.

Research and building a pipeline are the hardest two things a salesperson needs to accomplish daily and SalesNav is one of the tools that helps them do that. Being able to search by company then by individual with less clicks and time spent. It can even make suggestions based on your search history.”

LinkedIn Sales Navigator Review, Robert S.

“It’s super easy to find more information about prospects that’s not available on their regular LinkedIn page. It’s also great to see who at my company knows people at their company, mutual groups or connections, people at that company who follow mine, etc. There’s tons of ways to get hotter leads.

Additionally, they make it easy to group prospects together into lists (that I can then send to my SDR). Finally, there’s a feed that allows me to see updates on all saved leads, which comes in handy for outreach.”

LinkedIn Sales Navigator Review, Jessica M.

“Sales Navigator gives the ability to build lists of potential prospects through a number of different filters. You can submit your search by so many variables including industry, company size, level in the organization, titles, and even keyword searches of your own choosing.

Not only does it provide a list of potential prospects by those criteria, but it saves that search and adds new people who come to fit the prescribed criteria over time. It’s like having a built in pipeline for prospecting just by doing a bit of initial legwork.

In addition, the LinkedIn Sales Navigator support team has been amazing. I got a personal 30 minute training session on how to properly use it for my business. Great service!”

LinkedIn Sales Navigator Review, Marc M.


What users dislike

“I wish there was a way to export a list of contacts that are saved into an excel file. I don’t like that Sales Navigator doesn’t talk with [the regular] LinkedIn platform, so it can sometimes get confusing when talking with a prospect and there are two different conversations going on.

I’m not sure if they are ever going to merge the two, but hopefully, they will have something along the lines soon. The information isn’t always up to date so it can sometimes be a pain going back and forth to double-check, but it’s better to do it once and be done.”

LinkedIn Sales Navigator Review, Trevor D.

“InMails allowed to be sent (called credits) are capped. However, for every prospect who indicates they will accept your message, you get a credit back, so that is a plus and incentives you as a salesperson to ensure the prospect is a good fit and that you have good messaging and a strong call to action.”

LinkedIn Sales Navigator Review, Zach K.

“Sometimes reaching the right lead or filtering the right lead becomes a cumbersome search results navigation exercise. In addition, on a per lead conversion basis, this tool is expensive. You should know when and where and for whom to use this tool. The other issue is that more often most of the leads do not have their work email associated with their linkedin profile. In such cases, it takes more effort to have catchy subject lines to draw their attention to the email.”

LinkedIn Sales Navigator Review, Raj L.


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