To achieve goals and hit KPI’s, salespeople need a lot of knowledge and experience. From product and market expertise to value propositions and messaging that converts, the right sales skills result in more meaningful conversations and sales. So, what are sales skills, and how do we develop them? 

What are Sales Skills?

A skill is the ability to do something, whether making a bed or negotiating with clients. We develop skills through experiences in life and at work. We also develop them through knowledge and education, such as sales training. Sales skills relate to the actions needed to perform a sales position proficiently. They connect directly to actions we take that have a direct impact on sales. Sales skills help increase performance in sales and win more customers. With practice and education, anyone can learn and improve sales skills.

Why are Sales Skills Important?

Sales skills are important to help us perform successfully in sales. They boost our performance and make us indispensable to our employer. Businesses prefer to hire salespeople with certain traits and characteristics because specific skills are associated with a higher success rate. Managers want to know that members of their sales staff can work independently, communicate well with others, have the knowledge and experience to sell the products, and help increase profits for the business.

How to Develop Sales Skills

There are five proven ways to develop sales skills and boost sales performance in any industry. Top salespeople excel when it comes to public speaking, social psychology, communication, listening, and many other things, in addition to negotiating and closing. Putting time and effort into developing the sales skills of your sales team will determine how successful the company will be. No matter the level of your organisation presently, the products or services you sell, and the sector, there is always room for improvement. Here are five ways to develop sales skills.

1. Product/Service Expertise

Most times, salespeople don’t even study the product or service they are trying to sell to their target audience. They are just concerned about the commission they will get from each sale. 

Successful salespeople know as much as they need to know about what they are selling. If salespeople are not educated about the value of what they are selling, the key features, it will be impossible to convey the right message to potential buyers. 

So, it is essential salespeople know the ins and outs of the product or service they are selling to convey the right message passionately to prospects and improve sales.

2. Effective Communication

Effective communication is vital. It is one trait associated with not only successful salespeople but all business people. The ability to communicate a message to another party is a non-negotiable skill for salespeople. 

It is necessary for drafting, catching sales emails, keeping conversation with prospective buyers, and nailing compelling presentations to various decision-makers.  

A sales professional is obligated to continuously hone their verbal and written communication skills to perform well in their role.

3. Customer Service

If you noticed a decrease in your business sales performance, endeavour to check how your sales team relates to your target customers. Chances are, their way of rapport and engagement with clients is not up to standard. Thus, they need to take their time to learn about their target audience behaviour and how their products or services can alleviate their longings and pain points.

4. Problem-Solving Attitude

A good sales professional must have a problem-solving attitude. That is to say, a salesperson’s ultimate goal is not to close deals only but also to solve the customer’s problem. 

Usually, people buy for two reasons; either to solve their problem or to satisfy their desire. So every salesperson needs the skill set to figure out what motivates their customers.

5. Inquire, Listen, and Act!

These three words are better than anything in the sales department. They summarise what constitutes success in sales. 

Professional salespeople don’t just sit down with a prospect or cold call a prospect and start selling immediately. They first ask creative and planned questions and listen attentively to the prospect. 

So, salespeople must learn how to ask intelligent questions to help them know if the prospect is the right fit or not for what they are selling. When prospects talk, implore your listening skills. And lastly, it’s incumbent you respond by taking actions to improve what the customer says and wants. 

Sales assessment tools are a great starting point to assess which skills a salesperson excels with and which sales skills need development. Thorough knowledge of how to sell is what separates a novice from a pro. Understanding these basic sales skills can tremendously transform any average salesperson into a pro.  


For more information about sales training, get in touch with the BizBriefcase team.

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