Inside Sales Jobs: The Hidden Gem of the Sales World
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An inside sales jobs may be just what you are searching for to boost your career. But just what is inside sales and how does it support a company’s sales strategy?
An inside sales representative works remotely from the target customer to sell products and services.
Often these sales representatives work as part of an inside sales team based in an office environment. However, this is not always a requirement.
Since the salesperson is already remote from the customer, it is often of little consequence if they work from a designated home office space.
Usually, all that would be required for such a setup would be a high-speed internet connection, a connected device, and a phone.
A sales manager would still require regular check-ins from workers at a remote location and industry standards and business needs will often dictate specific arrangements.
The duties of an inside sales job follow each step of the sales cycle. Here is a list of some of the specific tasks that will be expected of most sales team members.
Making contact with potential customers is the most important step for an inside sales representative. This is accomplished by cold calls, emails, or other forms of communication like social media.
Because an inside sales representative is separated from the potential buyer, it can be a challenge to convert these cold calls into warm leads.
The process of turning prospects into customers requires that the sales rep identify the potential buyer’s needs.
This discovery phase happens through conversations with prospective clients, which highlights why good communication skills are so important for inside salespeople.
Hopefully, the conversations and time spent with qualified leads will turn into a relationship where the sales representative is viewed as a committed guide to solving the customer’s problems.
Lasting relationships can be difficult to find in the inside sales business simply because the quantity of sales is often pursued over quality.
However, there are advantages to developing strongly-built relationships with customers. Therefore, repeat business and high customer satisfaction.
The goal of every salesperson is to close sales. Reaching that point in the selling cycle requires the successful identification of the customer’s needs, negotiating appropriate terms, and finalizing the agreement.
Good sales employees don’t lose sight of the responsibility to provide a meaningful and pleasant buying experience to maximize the possibility of future sales.
A specialized inside sales rep like an account manager will work with clients long-term to cultivate further sales and provide customer support.
This is an important part of the sales cycle that can push customers back into the sales funnel for another purchase.
In the information age, every interaction with customers provides data points that can be used to provide valuable information to an inside sales team.
Individual and team performance can be tracked to see stats like average sales cycle length, average call time, and pipeline conversion ratio.
Even when an inside sales representative faces rejection in the selling process, finding out the reasons why can lead to adjustments in the next attempt.
When sales management collects data into a dashboard software system, it can be used as a motivational tool for the entire team.
Not every inside sales position is created equal. Some opportunities are simply better suited to a particular sales representative because of their priorities, personality, or preference.
You will want to verify that the job you pursue meets the specific salary range that meets your needs. Check out some of the other factors that every candidate should evaluate before they respond to the latest job alert.
While many of these items will require in-depth research to determine, the effort is worth it.
Having the details on these subjects can help a sales representative make informed decisions before completing the hiring process.
It’s important to review the compensation methods used for inside sales staff as they can vary wildly based on industry and individual position.
Except for commission-only jobs, a base salary will be provided. Then a commission on top of sales made is earned.
There are several solutions to the common problem of unstable income that can come from this type of work.
One possible method is the draw against commission structure which allows sales reps to borrow against their future sales.
A sales professional that is considering an inside sales job with a company will want to examine the product line or services that the business is selling.
Is it a product or service that they believe in?
Therefore, Can they sincerely represent the product to the world as the best-in-class?
Evaluate the process the company uses to generate high-quality leads.
Prospecting for customers and converting them to qualified leads will be a large part of any inside sales job.
So, make sure that there are efficient processes in place to get new hires up and selling fast.
While you may have past inside sales expertise and experience, you will find that any new job will require some amount of training – even if it is simply to learn the company’s specific methods of selling.
Onboarding training keeps new hires from floundering and when that training is paid it can help offset the lower level of sales.
Continuous professional development opportunities can help sales representatives keep their skills fresh and share knowledge within the group.
Seminars, workshops, and industry events give great opportunities to network as well.
A sales manager should take time to provide specific and helpful feedback to each rep in a one-on-one manner.
These personalized training sessions will give sales reps the chance to receive directed and focused improvement tips.
Good management teams don’t pass up the opportunity to provide commendation and motivation at these regular meetings.
Look for a company that has a culture that matches your ideal work environment.
A company’s values and mission can create a pleasant or stressful environment that you will be selling in each day.
A positive culture can lead to greater job satisfaction and be a key motivator for salespeople.
Be on the lookout for companies that value growth and present opportunities for career advancement.
This should come in the form of regular training, the gradual delegation of additional responsibilities, and continuous support and feedback.
Technology tools have become an integral part of the inside sales process.
In fact, examine the prospective company’s current toolbox of tech resources.
This would include any customer relationship management (CRM) software and tools to assist with time management and organization.
Good companies will also have product knowledge resources to assist in the sales process and answering customers’ questions.
It’s important to determine that a job offers a balanced work-life relationship.
Working hours should be defined and there should be a separation between work and personal time.
This will improve job satisfaction and overall mental health.
An inside sales representative should review a company’s policy on work arrangements.
Sometimes there is greater flexibility in choosing your ideal work schedule or even the location that you sell from.
Having the ability to manage your own hours is a great incentive and can reduce stress and improve morale.
Every sales job comes with benefits of some fashion. As a result, this can add real value beyond the paycheck.
Review the benefits package offered like retirement accounts, health and vision insurance, and paid time off.
Many inside sales teams will have regular incentive programs or competitions to motivate sales reps to reach higher sales quotas.
For example, this could be trips, prizes, or cash bonuses.
Inside sales jobs can be rewarding career choices for sales professionals. Additionally, these positions focus on selling from the office or home office to remote customers.
They are involved in all parts of the sales cycle but will naturally focus a lot of attention on finding prospective buyers and working to generate interest and shepherd them toward a closed deal.
When you are considering a new job for inside sales, evaluate the salary offered and key additional details:
When you look for an inside sales job with a company that values the same things you do, you can be more confident that you will succeed with them.