10 Reasons to Pursue a Career in Sales

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated July 27, 2022

Published September 25, 2020

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Video: A Day in the Life of a Sales Rep

Learn about being a sales rep—like educating customers on product features, conducting product demonstrations, leading sales calls and identifying new leads

A career in sales involves selling products and services by highlighting how a customer can benefit from making a purchase. Salespeople can develop their careers based on their individual interests and ideal lifestyle, making sales a smart and exciting career choice for anyone entering the job market. There are many reasons to pursue a career in sales.

In this article, we share some of the top reasons that people decide to start a career in sales.

Why pursue a career in sales?

Two people wearing headsets look at monitors while responding to calls or online requests.

A career in sales can provide you with exciting and lucrative opportunities in both your personal and professional life. People who are creative, knowledgeable, strategic, independent, confident and motivated have the opportunity to become top earners as salespeople. Even entry-level positions provide plenty of opportunities for growth and a competitive starting salary, and anyone willing to practice can become an excellent salesperson.

Related: Learn About Being a Sales Representative

This career path has benefits for people with the right personality and attitude, including:

1. Accessibility

Most sales positions have a low barrier to entry and do not require specialized training or college education to get started. This makes sales one of the most accessible professions for people beginning their careers or looking to switch professions. Having a passion for sales and a commitment to learning about your clients can often be enough to get you an entry-level sales position that can grow into a lucrative and interesting career.

Related: FAQ: How Do You Get a Sales Job With No Experience?

2. Earning potential

Salespeople usually earn a commission based on how much they sell, creating a high earning potential for talented people who are willing to work hard. Positions that have unlimited commission opportunities allow for an impressive salary for top salespeople. Many sales positions also have a base salary, so people who are still learning the basics of sales can still make a decent salary until they understand how to bring in a high amount of commission earnings.

Related: 14 Sales Jobs That Pay Well

3. Job security

Salespeople are an important part of the economy and facilitate business between different companies as well as customer purchases. Many different types of businesses employ salespeople, giving them job security regardless of their specific industry.

Because salespeople often work on a commission basis, they can have control of how much they work and earn. Salespeople can improve their earning opportunities by seeking out new leads and upselling products to current customers.

4. Work-life balance

Salespeople can often set their own schedules, especially if they work based on a quota system that requires them to make a certain number of sales in a period of time. Once they meet that requirement, any additional sales are simply extra commission, and they can work as much or as little as they like. Many people with sales careers have an excellent work-life balance because they can plan their work schedules around their personal life instead of vice versa.

Related: Top 25 Jobs for Work-Life Balance

5. Growth potential

Sales careers require you to constantly grow and evolve your skills to suit the needs of the market. There are ample professional development opportunities for salespeople, and companies often pay for their salespeople to receive additional training.

Entry-level sales positions can transition into senior salespeople who train and mentor new employees or even become sales consultants that help manage entire departments. Anyone with a strong work ethic and a demonstrated talent for sales can grow within the field of sales or use their sales knowledge to succeed in other positions.

Related: 11 Topics for Your Next Sales Training

6. Transferrable skills

Employers see soft skills as especially valuable because they are harder to teach, giving people with sales skills an advantage if they ever decided to switch careers. Salespeople learn many transferrable soft skills that can be applied to any other profession, making sales one of the most versatile careers you can choose. Sales involve highly marketable soft skills such as:

  • Interpersonal communication

  • Persuasion

  • Active listening

  • Tact

  • Creativity

  • Adaptability

  • Trustworthiness

  • Work ethic

Read more: Great Skills to Include on a Sales Resume

7. Travel

Travel can be an integral part of sales as companies explore different markets and network with other businesses and customers. Companies rely on salespeople to build and maintain relationships with clients through positive experience, so traveling to new places and experiencing local entertainment is a built-in perk of many sales jobs. People who enjoy travel can see different parts of the world through a sales career as they visit customers and business partners.

Related: 20 Jobs for People Who Like To Travel (and Make Money Doing It)

8. Networking

Sales are one of the most social professions you can choose, making it a great field for growing your professional network. A job in sales can help you learn best practices for networking in different fields, managing business relationships and developing a good reputation.

Salespeople develop the ability to seek out leads in any situation, enabling them to make lasting connections with many different people. People who enjoy working with others can build lasting personal and community relationships through their sales job.

9. Competition

Sales can provide an interesting and exciting challenge for people who thrive in competitive environments. Bonuses for top performers are common in sales departments and can create a fun atmosphere of rivalry that encourages everyone to do their best. Because of its large growth potential and direct relationship between effort and earnings, sales is a great career for people who like to push themselves and constantly strive for new levels of success.

10. Variety

Most salespeople work to customize their company's solutions to a client's particular situation, so each day is likely to be different for salespeople. Jobs in sales provide variety in the type of work you do, often requiring salespeople to interact with customers from different industries and parts of the country. Salespeople meet new and interesting people every day and have to adapt their knowledge and experience to new situations constantly, providing a stimulating and rewarding work environment.

Related: Top Certifications for Sales Professionals

How to be a successful salesperson

If you're interested in starting a career in sales, there are plenty of strategies you can use to find a fulfilling position and grow your skills as a salesperson. Some people are naturally talented at sales, but anyone can develop their sales skills over time to build a satisfying and lucrative sales career. Work towards becoming a successful salesperson by following these steps:

Find a field that interests you.

Many companies have entry-level sales positions, so take your time and find an industry that excites you. When you're passionate about the products or services you want to sell, you can feel more motivated and be more convincing when talking to potential leads.

Get to know what you're selling.

Learn all of the details about the products you sell so that you can accurately educate your customers and use product features as a selling point. Being knowledgeable about everything you sell builds trust with customers and can allow you to identify what kinds of customers would find your products most useful and be more likely to buy.

Listen to your customers.

Form a personal connection with your sales leads by using active listening skills to identify their needs. This can help you build a friendly rapport with your customers, putting them at ease and giving them a reason to listen to your sales pitch. Listening to your customers also allows you to recommend the right products and personalize your pitch.

Set and measure goals.

Develop ambitious goals during each sales period and measure your progress. Study the sales numbers of others on your team to get an idea of what a realistic sales goal is, and ask top salespeople for advice on achieving high sales numbers. Track your sales numbers and make note of how different sales strategies and other changes could have impacted your success.

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