As the sole point of contact, sales representatives are responsible for all business matters when it comes to their clients. They ensure the right products are delivered, follow customer leads, and pitch prospective customers.

Probably the most important aspect of a sales representative's job is closing on sales. That's what keeps the business running and your paycheck coming. There are some times when you'll have to deal with tough situations, like customer complaints, and you'll have to know how to fix the situation.

The majority of sales representatives spend about 47 hours a week at work. From travel time to breaks and interacting with customers, you've got some long days ahead. Although, it's not a bad gig, especially since you only need a high school diploma. The majority of your education in your career will come from on-the-job training - nothing beats hands-on experience.

What Does a Sales Representative Do

There are certain skills that many sales representatives have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed customer-service skills, interpersonal skills and physical stamina.

Learn more about what a Sales Representative does

How To Become a Sales Representative

If you're interested in becoming a sales representative, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 53.7% of sales representatives have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 3.7% of sales representatives have master's degrees. Even though most sales representatives have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Learn More About How To Become a Sales Representative

Sales Representative Career Paths

Average Salary for a Sales Representative

Sales Representatives in America make an average salary of $56,591 per year or $27 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $94,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $33,000 per year.
Average Sales Representative Salary
$56,591 Yearly
$27.21 hourly
$33,000
10 %
$56,000
Median
$94,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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How To Become a Sales Representative
How To Become a Sales Representative Career Overview

States With The Most Sales Representative Jobs

Mouse over a state to see the number of active sales representative jobs in each state. The darker areas on the map show where sales representatives earn the highest salaries across all 50 states.

Average Salary: Job Openings:

Number Of Sales Representative Jobs By State

Sales Representative Education

Sales Representative Majors

32.6 %

Sales Representative Degrees

Bachelors

53.7 %

High School Diploma

20.1 %

Associate

15.6 %

Top Colleges for Sales Representatives

1. SUNY College of Technology at Alfred

Alfred, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,570
Enrollment
3,721

2. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

3. University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

Minneapolis, MN • Private

In-State Tuition
$14,760
Enrollment
31,451

4. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

5. California State University - Bakersfield

Bakersfield, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,309
Enrollment
9,142

6. Baylor University

Waco, TX • Private

In-State Tuition
$45,542
Enrollment
14,159

7. Ball State University

Muncie, IN • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,896
Enrollment
15,529

8. University of Wisconsin - Madison

Madison, WI • Private

In-State Tuition
$10,555
Enrollment
30,360

9. SUNY College of Technology at Delhi

Delhi, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,360
Enrollment
3,142

10. Bentley University

Waltham, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$49,880
Enrollment
4,177

Top Skills For a Sales Representative

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 9.0% of sales representatives listed sales process on their resume, but soft skills such as customer-service skills and interpersonal skills are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Sales Representative Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Sales Representative templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Sales Representative resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

Sales Representative Resume
Sales Representative Resume
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Sales Representative Resume
Sales Representative Resume
Sales Representative Resume
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Sales Representative Resume
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Sales Representative Demographics

Sales Representative Gender Distribution

Male
Male
58%
Female
Female
42%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among sales representatives, 41.9% of them are women, while 58.1% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among sales representatives is White, which makes up 76.1% of all sales representatives.

  • The most common foreign language among sales representatives is Spanish at 65.1%.

Work Experience Programs For Sales Representatives

Virtual work experience programs replicate work at top companies and help you gain the skills to be successful when applying and working there. In only a few hours, learn the relevant tools necessary to complete a typical work day at that company. Virtual work experience programs are 100% free, open-access, and self-paced. No experience or application is required!

Global Private Bank Program

Company: JPMorgan Chase

Cost: Free

Duration: 4.5-6 hours

Client Research and Problem Identification Program

Company: Accenture North America

Cost: Free

Duration: 4-5 hours

Wealth Management Program

Company: Goodbody

Cost: Free

Duration: 5-6 hours

Global Consumer Banking Program

Company: Citi APAC

Cost: Free

Duration: 2-3 hours

Advanced Commerical Law Program

Company: King & Wood Mallesons

Cost: Free

Duration: 5-6 hours

Workplace Preparation Program

Company: ANZ

Cost: Free

Duration: 5-6 hours

Markets - Sales & Trading Program

Company: Citi APAC

Cost: Free

Duration: 5-6 hours

Careers in Government Program

Company: NSW Government Virtual Program

Cost: Free

Duration: 1-2 hours

StartUps for Smarter Cities Program

Company: Sydney School of Entrepreneurship

Cost: Free

Duration: 7-9 hours

Product Design Program

Company: Accenture North America

Cost: Free

Duration: 4 hours

Online Courses For Sales Representative That You May Like

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4.3
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1. Generate Leads, 2. Pitch, 3. Close & Handle Any Objection: Get Certified in Cutting Edge, Non-Pushy B2B Sales System...

Sales Training Pro: The Complete Sales Presentation Course
udemy
4.5
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Practical, Hands-on Sales Techniques and Tools to Effortlessly Engage your Customers In Your Sales Presentations...

Sales Fire: B2B Sales & Business Development for Startups
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4.1
(556)

The Ultimate Sales Methodology for Business Development & B2B Sales to Learn Sales Strategy, Sales Skills & Deal Closing...

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Best States For a Sales Representative

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a sales representative. The best states for people in this position are Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Wyoming. Sales representatives make the most in Massachusetts with an average salary of $72,324. Whereas in New Jersey and Rhode Island, they would average $67,915 and $67,012, respectively. While sales representatives would only make an average of $65,083 in Wyoming, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Rhode Island

Total Sales Representative Jobs:
367
Highest 10% Earn:
$126,000
Location Quotient:
1.21

2. New Jersey

Total Sales Representative Jobs:
2,922
Highest 10% Earn:
$123,000
Location Quotient:
1.47

3. Pennsylvania

Total Sales Representative Jobs:
3,836
Highest 10% Earn:
$113,000
Location Quotient:
1.32
Full List Of Best States For Sales Representatives

How Do Sales Representative Rate Their Jobs?

Zippia Official Logo

3.0

Sales representativeJune 2020

3.0

Zippia Official LogoSales representativeJune 2020

What do you like the most about working as Sales Representative?

Communicating and helping my clients. Show More

What do you NOT like?

The travel was extensive. Sometimes. It took more than month to close a deaĺ. Show More

Zippia Official Logo

5.0

Sales RepresentativeMay 2020

5.0

Zippia Official LogoSales RepresentativeMay 2020

What do you like the most about working as Sales Representative?

i enjoy the interaction with people, listen the customer in order to convert him/her into your friend, detect and help customer with his/her needs. Show More

What do you NOT like?

People without vision, dreams and selfishness. Show More

Zippia Official Logo

4.0

MarketingMarch 2020

4.0

Zippia Official LogoMarketingMarch 2020

What do you like the most about working as Sales Representative?

Marketing products from a traceable companies to consumers and providing a good service to the clients . Show More

What do you NOT like?

I don't like to work for a company without good management which results in disappointing consumers Show More

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Top Sales Representative Employers

We've made finding a great employer to work for easy by doing the hard work for you. We looked into employers that employ sales representatives and discovered their number of sales representative opportunities and average salary. Through our research, we concluded that T-Mobile US was the best, especially with an average salary of $47,420. AT&T; follows up with an average salary of $52,130, and then comes Cutco with an average of $44,885. In addition, we know most people would rather work from home. So instead of having to change careers, we identified the best employers for remote work as a sales representative. The employers include Humana, Stryker, and Ferguson Enterprises

Most Common Employers For Sales Representative

RankCompanyAverage SalaryHourly RateJob Openings
1Liberty Mutual Insurance$61,971$29.791,020
2Cintas$57,817$27.802,271
3PepsiCo$52,425$25.201,111
4AT&T$52,130$25.065,327
5Walmart$48,919$23.521,487
6T-Mobile$47,420$22.806,430
7Comcast$47,405$22.791,116
8Cutco$44,885$21.582,935
9Alorica$44,124$21.21944
10Sears Holdings$43,137$20.742,209

Sales Representative Videos

Becoming a Sales Representative FAQs

How Long Does It Take To Become A Sales Representative?

It takes 3 years of professional experience to become a sales representative. That is the time it takes to learn specific sales representative skills, but does not account for time spent in formal education. If you include the normal education requirements to complete a college degree, then it takes 6 to 8 years years to become a sales representative.

Do You Need A Degree To Be A Sales Representative?

No, you do not need a degree to work as a sales representative. If you prefer not to go the college route, there are still job opportunities for you as a sales representative.

In fact, almost 17% of sales representatives have only a high school diploma. That's not to say that a college degree will not be preferred by some companies. About 45% of sales reps have a bachelor's degree, and 13 % have an associate's degree in business, marketing, communication, and psychology.

How Much Does A Sales Rep Make A Year?

A sales representative makes $47,187 a year or $24 an hour. However, there is a high range of variability in the earning potential of a sales rep, ranging from $97,500 per year (or $50 per hour) down to $15,000 per year (or $7.21 per hour).

Is It Hard To Become A Sales Rep?

No, it is not hard to become a sales rep. There are no formal education requirements for sales representative positions. Many jobs can be obtained with just a high school diploma or its equivalent, although prior sales experience is advantageous.

What Are Career Paths In Sales?

A career path in sales is sales representative, sales executive, and senior sales executive. There are additional levels beyond a senior sales executive, including manager or director of sales, or vice president of sales.

What Are The Five Basic Skills Of A Sales Representative?

The five basic skills of a sales representative are communication, prospecting, social selling, business acumen, and active listening. That is not to say that there are no other skills that are also important in being a good sales representative, such as patience or storytelling.

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