Sales Skills List and Examples

List of Sales Skills for Resumes, Cover Letters and Interviews

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There are many positions in many fields that involve selling something. These jobs are often lucrative, and many provide a very satisfying degree of flexibility and independence. While some sales positions may require a particular educational background, and there are college programs that are very helpful for people interested in these types of careers.

You can also pick up many of the necessary skills on your own, through on-the-job training or even volunteer work.

Look through the descriptions; you may have more applicable skills than you thought.

How to Use Skills Lists

Sales skills are a subset of the skills necessary for many jobs - which other skills you need will vary from position to position, so be sure to read job descriptions carefully. In the meantime, you can use the following discussion to identify which sales skills you have, where you might need to brush up, and how you can present your abilities in the best possible light when you apply for a sales position. It may also help for you to review our list of skills listed by job and type of skill.

When you apply for a job, you can tweak your resume and cover letter to showcase the skills your prospective employer is looking for. Be prepared to describe, in your interview, particular incidents that show how you embody each skill.

Examples of Sales Skills

Sales skills fall into several broad but partially overlapping categories.

Position-Based Sales Skills
These are skills that include job titles and tasks specific to a position, such as account management, territory management, public relations, marketing, and client acquisition. To a certain extent, these overlap; you might be able to apply your experience in client acquisition to public relations or marketing, for example.

Just because you have not held a given title yet, do not assume you lack relevant experience.

Communication Skills for Sales
In sales positions, you will need to communicate with potential and current customers, clients, suppliers, and vendors. Some of these skills are very distinct, even technical, such as being fluent in a second or third language, knowing how to write clear and accurate reports, and being good at public speaking.

Others are more like character traits, yet they can be learned; these include creating rapport, listening attentively, and building relationships. Still others are a mix between those two, such as negotiating, pitching products, and networking.

Personal Mastery Skills for Sales
These are personal habits, qualities, traits and values that you can use on the job. Like other skills, you must practice these in order to develop them, but they do not require training so much as personal willingness.

An older word for many of these might be “virtues.” If you didn’t have them, clients and colleagues would soon become unwilling to work with you. Virtues particularly applicable to sales include diligence, initiative, integrity, and sincerity. Some people do attempt to sell by means of dishonesty and manipulation, but, in addition to being wrong, such methods are ultimately less effective.

General Sales Skills
There are other skills that don’t fall easily into the other categories but that are very important for many sales jobs. For example, depending on what you are selling, you may have to be able to demonstrate your products. That means not only knowing how to operate them smoothly, but also knowing how to explain what you are doing clearly. A flare for the dramatic helps.

You may have to work on maintaining your brand, meaning both advertising what you sell and, quite possibly, keeping yourself in the public eye as a trustworthy person. These days, the latter relies heavily on both online content creation and social media management. You should therefore know how to write clear, engaging text, and be able to use multiple social media platforms and Microsoft Office or its equivalent.

Finally, you’ll need complex skills, such as customer service, the ability to forecast how the market will change in the coming months and years, and the ability to identify target audiences and appropriate pricing for your products.

List of Sales Skills

Selling is a multifaceted and demanding line of work. The list of associated skills is almost infinite, but the good news is so are the circumstances under which you can apply those skills.

Position-Based Sales Skills

These are skills that include job titles and tasks specific to a position.

  • Account Management
  • Bidding
  • Client Acquisition
  • Client Retention
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • Project Management
  • Public Relations
  • Supervising
  • Territory Management

General Sales Skills

  • Achieving Results
  • Closing
  • Cold Calling
  • Consultations
  • Contracts
  • Customer Satisfaction
  • Customer Service
  • Delivering Goods
  • Demonstrating Products
  • Directing Customers
  • Displaying Samples
  • Estimating
  • Forecasting
  • Goal Setting
  • Identifying Target Audience
  • Inventory
  • Lead Generation
  • Maximizing Sales
  • Microsoft Office
  • Monetary Exchange
  • Negotiation
  • Networking
  • Order Processing
  • Persuasion
  • Planning Meetings
  • Pitching Products
  • Presentations
  • Proposals
  • Pricing
  • Profitability
  • Proposals
  • Quotas
  • Recordkeeping
  • Relationship Building
  • Reporting
  • Researching Targets
  • Results
  • Servicing Goods
  • Strategy
  • Value

Communication Skills for Sales

In sales positions, you will need to communicate with potential and current customers, clients, suppliers, and vendors. What skills do you have in communications that you will be able to use in your next position?

  • Communication
  • Creating Good Rapport
  • Dealing with Objections
  • Fluency in other Languages
  • Greeting Customers
  • Listening
  • Negotiation
  • Networking
  • Pitching Products
  • Persuasion
  • Public Speaking
  • Relationship Building
  • Writing Reports

Personal Mastery Skills for Sales

These skills are personal habits, qualities, traits and values that you can use on the job.

  • Diligence
  • Engagement
  • Ethics
  • Initiative
  • Interpersonal
  • Leadership
  • Maintain a Personal Brand
  • Meet Goals
  • Set Goals
  • Sincerity
  • Teamwork

Read More: Must Have Sales Skills | Sales Associate Skills | Sales Keywords for Resumes

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