Career snapshot: Jobs in sales

Published by MAXSolutions on August 16, 2021
Jobs in sales

Jobs in sales are available in every industry you can think of. Growing industries such as the tech sector, education, tourism and retail trade all require the expertise of knowledgeable and charismatic salespeople.

The misconception that you are knocking on doors or on the phone all day, chasing unreachable targets, might play well in the movies, but isn’t so true to life.

Sales jobs can contain elements of marketing, logistics or administration depending on your focus and your industry. One thing they do have in common though is the sociable and friendly nature of the job.

If you love talking to people and have a way with words a job in sales might be right for you. Find out more about sales jobs and how you can get into the industry below.


What are the benefits of a job in sales?

It’s big

The retail sector alone employs around 1.3 million Australians with upwards of 150 billion dollars in revenue. If you want a job in sales however, you aren’t just limited to what you find in the local shops.

Any business that sells a service or product requires salespeople so that means you can find opportunities in many different industries.


It’s diverse

Due to the widespread nature of the job, salespeople could be selling almost anything. This means you can find a job selling things you are passionate about and maybe even something that matches your hobbies.

While the industries you can work in are diverse the skill set is the same. So, while you may start your career selling a particular product or service, you are not limited to that industry . You can bring your skills and knowledge of the sales process to another business selling a completely different product with ease.


It’s changing

While certain parts of the sales profession may be getting smaller in areas that online shopping has taken over, these jobs aren’t disappearing. They are shifting to other sectors.

The tech sector for example is growing substantially and there are significant opportunities for salespeople in this space.

Salespeople are not merely performing a transaction. They are using their expert product knowledge to guide customers towards the best for their situation and needs.

The move towards more technology and data being used in the sales process means there are many opportunities to also grow your skills and knowledge and apply them in marketing roles as you progress your career.


Skills for salespeople

Good with people

Being a sociable person is pretty important for sales jobs as you will spend most of your day talking to people. Being comfortable having conversations with strangers and creating connections with them will be key to being successful in a sales role.


Quick thinking

Sales isn’t about repeating marketing lines at everyone that walks in the door. It’s about finding the who what when where and why of each potential customer you talk to.

Oftentimes in the space of one conversation. Being able to think on your feet and change your tactics will be a big part of your success.


Research skills

Knowing the products you sell is just one part of the job. You also need to know what your competitors are selling and how they compare to yours.

Keeping up on industry trends is also important to instil confidence in your customer base as it shows you know what you are talking about.


What types of sales jobs are there?


As a salesperson you will spend the bulk of your day speaking to potential customers the benefits of products and services and how it can provide value to them.

This could be in a store or an office either in person or on the phone.

Your responsibilities are not just limited to selling though, merchandising or warehousing could be a part of your role or you may have some administrative tasks or even diagnosing or repairing products.

It will all depend on the industry you are in and the products you sell.

Work will generally stick to standard business hours but depending on the job weekend work is likely. So be sure to factor this in when you are considering jobs to apply for.


Business development

This field of sales has a different customer, other businesses. Because the customers aren’t coming to you, this means you will be spending a bit of time travelling around speaking to business owners or management to sell your product.

While there are entry-level roles for business development, generally they require someone that has experience in sales first.

That’s because while the skill sets remain largely the same, you are now selling to other salespeople that are product subject matter experts themselves.

You will also find in these types of roles you may be doing things like following up logistical problems and dealing with far more spreadsheets and admin requirements.


Marketing professionals

Marketing professionals perform a variety of roles that empower salespeople and provide opportunities for them to sell. There is a range of entry-level roles however many more positions within marketing generally require a degree.

Within the profession, you could be working on websites, creating visual or written marketing material, or organising events. Again, it will depend on your industry what products or services you sell.


Where to find jobs in sales?

It really depends on what you want to sell. Any big company that you find in you local shopping centre will need salespeople and applying will all be done through head office.

If you are looking for something a bit more specific or aligned with a hobby, reach out to the people in the know in that field to see if anyone is hiring.

The more niche the industry, the more hiring managers will appreciate people with passion and knowledge of the product.

You could also reach out to your consultant to see what opportunities they may know of. They could also get you ready by helping out with enrolling you in a retail short course


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