3 years ago
January 7, 2015

What is a Sales Job?

The world of sales is very much a people-centric business but there is much more to a sales job than just warming up to customers and flaunting a pro

Rhys Metler

Sales JobThe world of sales is very much a people-centric business but there is much more to a sales job than just warming up to customers and flaunting a pronounced gift of gab.  Not to suggest that good interpersonal communication skills aren’t a key facet, in fact most sales job descriptions go to great lengths to detail the requirements of customer interaction.  So the question remains, what is a sales job?

Sales jobs are essentially the key cog in the confluence of merchant supply and customer demand.  Sales professionals are responsible for determining customer wants and needs, communicating the features and benefits of the products or services being offered, and solidifying transactions to supply those products or services.  More specifically, the duties typically associated with sales jobs, in general, include:

  • Prospecting for new customers through cold calling, following up on leads from marketing, or meeting prospects in person either in a store or the customers workplace

  • Participate in trade shows, seminars, and telemarketing events

  • Tracking important data such as prospect activity, potential future sales opportunities, revenue and profitability, and other transactional data

  • Make presentations/demonstrations of products or services to customers

  • Create and maintain sales materials

  • Demonstrate on-going knowledge of relative products, competitive environments, and consumer needs

  • Develop and maintain relationships with new and existing customers

  • Communicate customer related information to design, production, and or purchasing personnel to facilitate proper supply

  • Implement marketing initiatives

  • Field complaints from customers and facilitate appropriate resolutions

Processing all that detail is a bit tedious but the essentials of a typical sales job are all there.  Finding customers in need of the products offered and getting customers to purchase them, it doesn’t get much simpler than that.  

There are two distinctive types of sales jobs, consumer (B2C) and business (B2B).  The two can be quite different but the basic elements tend to be the same, as detailed above.

The most common type of B2C sales is in the retail environment.  This is where a customer walks into a store and a sales person aids them in finding the appropriate product and closing the transaction.  Other varieties of B2C sales include door-to-door sales, phone sales, and web-based consumer product sales.  

B2B sales jobs are much more complex.  The most basic B2B sales job is probably that of a manufacture selling products to a reseller such as a distributor or dealer.  This is also referred to as wholesale sales.  But there are many other varieties and can include any sales job where the transaction takes place between two businesses.  A few examples:

  • Office supplies

  • Merchant services

  • Medical and pharmaceutical products

  • Information technology

Sales jobs involve pretty much anything required to motivate and facilitate the sale of a product or service.  Duties begin with identifying customers and end with closing deals and resolving post-sale issues.  There are many different varieties of sales jobs with countless business and consumer environments in which they take place.  But one thing rings true in nearly all of them, the most important aspect is the people involved.

Rhys Metler

Rhys is a tenacious, top performing Senior Sales Recruiter with 11+ years of focused experience in the Digital Media, Mobile, Software, Technology and B2B verticals. He has a successful track record of headhunting top performing sales candidates for some of the most exciting brands in North America. He is a Certified Recruitment Specialist (CRS) and has expert experience in prospecting new business, client retention/renewals and managing top performing sales and recruitment teams. Rhys enjoys spending quality time with his wife, son, and two daughters, BBQing on a hot summer day, tropical vacations and cottaging.