Top 17 Sales Agent Skills to Stay Top of Your Job
This post provides exhaustive information on the skills and qualities you need to become a top flight sales agent and succeed in your career.
Please, read on:
When businesses are established, the main essence is to reach out to potential end users who will need their products or service.
As simple as this may look, however, it requires some mechanism to make it a reality.
One of the mechanisms put in place is the appointment of a “Sales Agent”.
Who is a Sales Agent?
A sales agent is one who serves as a link between the company and customers in need of products, establishing a link and enlightening customers on the use of the product.
The sales agent is invariably a brand ambassador of their company and need to have certain skills and qualities to help the company achieve its sales goals.
Top 17 Skills and Qualities to Succeed as a Sales Agent
- Understanding the buyer
There are two things to consider when dealing with customers. First is what they want and second is how and when they want it.
This entails the experience they want to gain through the use of the product.
This will set the tone for what you should know about customer experience.
Knowing what the customer wants is the first step towards satisfying them.
This can be done through extensive market research and also a direct conversion with the customers to help know by first-hand what they want.
The second step towards satisfying the customers is to know how and when they need the products.
The feeling of satisfaction customers get is largely dependent on timing.
So, if you know what the customers want, proceed to knowing how and when they want it.
- Buyer-responsive selling
After identifying the two modes of satisfying the customer, your response to your discovery is now the next step to take.
Buyer responsive selling is one aspect of marketing which deals with rapid response to satisfying the demands of the customer.
This response is expected to be timely. Remember that in the business world that every second counts and can be the reason you gain or lose more customers in the marketplace.
This is one skill you should be conversant with at all times.
This is one trick that no sales agent jokes with.
This trick is capable of being the difference maker in your job.
Customers are endeared to companies who go out of their way to satisfy them with the experience they long for.
So, if you want to see them, engage in buyer-responsive selling.
- The psychology of buyer engagement
Customers are the main reason businesses exist from day to day.
Understanding this fact is one step towards excelling in your job as a sales agent.
The customers are to be given the best feeling they can ever desire from your company.
One way you can do this is to get into their thought line and know exactly how an average customer thinks.
Customers want the best value for their money and will stop at nothing to making sure they achieve this.
Sometimes, the customers might have a bad mindset towards a particular product which might have been out of the experience they have about using similar products.
So, you as a sales agent, you have the duty of doing your best to ensure they do not have the same experience or feeling towards your company’s product.
- Establishing trust with the buyer
It is impossible to retain customers in your capacity as a sales agent if customers have trust issues with you.
If you cannot be trusted by the customers in regards to your services then retaining them becomes a difficult issue.
Build the trust the customers have in you through unshakeable integrity.
Your integrity is your passport to the heart of your customers every now and then.
Be true to your word and give sincere apologies in areas you were not able to live up to your expectations.
Also, learn to deal with carelessness if you must be trustworthy in your workplace.
You need to watch out for errors and avoid situations that will put you under pressure not to deliver or live up to the expectations.
Repeated failure to live up to expectation will lead to you being tagged as not trustworthy.
- Concise communications
Communication is an important tool to establishing a working relationship with your employer and customers.
Communication helps you to keep the company and the customers abreast with latest information about latest products and how beneficial they can be.
First is your employer.
The employer needs to be updated with the latest happenings in your job and this will help them to know how much help you will need to work better.
When you communicate with your employer, it is a sign of accountability.
Also, to the customers, you need to establish a good communication with them through effective communication channels.
When you communicate with the customers, there is this sense of belonging it gives to them. There is the feeling that you value their input.
Don’t stop the communication no matter what.
- Customer-driven responsiveness
When a communication is to be established by you the sales agent, let it be geared towards meeting the needs of the customer.
That is what we mean by customer-driven responsiveness. Like earlier stated, it gives them a sense of belonging.
Let not your communication be geared towards asserting the company’s ideologies without it being in direct response to the demands of the company.
Like earlier stated, customers are the reason for the existence of the company you represent and majority of the communication channels should be to satisfy the customers.
Also, with your experience in dealing with customers on daily basis, you should be able to advice the company on what you think should be the best response to the customers.
Your boss may not have the firsthand experience of what the customers want, but you sure do.
- Sales subject matter expertise
Here, we mean having sufficient knowledge about the market.
The knowledge of the market will give you an advantage over other competitors in the marketplace and the workplace.
So, you have to work hard to learn all you need to know in your field and be your best at your job.
It is through market survey and other resourceful research that you will be able to know what the market structure is and what makes other competitors successful.
Through this research, you will also know what customers are currently in demand of.
It is pertinent to know that another advantage you get when you have garnered huge expertise in sales subject is the ability to predict what the structure of the market might be in the future.
This keeps you going and helps you to become without doubt a sort after sales professional both in and outside of your company.
- Helping skills
The job is not all about you, neither does it revolves around you only.
There is room to help others achieve their goals in the organization.
No matter how little the help might be, in your little capacity in the organization, there are people you can help excel in their own job.
This can come through cultivating some interesting interpersonal skills.
Interpersonal skills are important both in and outside the company environment.
When you cultivate interpersonal skills, you will be able to make your job better as well as that of others.
One way you can be of help is to be a selfless tutor to people who might be new to the same job as you or in a related job.
When you do that, you are helping them evade some difficulties that are associated with coming into a new job.
- Compelling storytelling
Compelling storytelling is one skill to be learnt by anyone working in the capacity of a sales agent.
This is an art to be learnt if you are to make a good public presentation to your prospective customers.
You must learn to make your points through the act of storytelling.
Public presentation skills involve storytelling.
These stories are meant to reflect how the thought of the product came to be and why the products will serve a good purpose to the prospective customers.
However, be careful not to sound exaggerative in your narration. This can be a turn off to the prospective customers.
When you tell your stories, make sure the story is in line with the message you want to put across and not boring to the listeners.
Be mindful not to overstress some points in the course of your presentation through unnecessary stories.
It might be a big turn off to most customers.
Manage your time and know when to use story telling tactic to capture their attention.
- Team work
Team work demands team spirit, which is reflected in team motivated goals.
As a member of a sales team, you look out for the benefit of the team and not just your own interest.
Teamwork pays and teamwork has the capacity to build you into a better sales agent.
A good sales agent will always work with a team of professionals to sharpen their selling skills.
Trying to work all alone and all by yourself will not only stress you out but always fetch you little results compared to when you are working with a team.
Also, when you are working in a team, it is important you bring down your ego and any kind of act that may undermine the effort of the team.
When you engage in anti-team activities, you will be working hard negatively to undermine the effort of the team.
- Phone-based sales
This implies that you as a sales agent must be able to enhance sales through the use of cell phone, particularly smartphones.
This is a digital age and many things have gone wireless, and the marketplace is majorly the Internet.
If you cannot make use of a smartphone to reach out to customers, then you will find yourself behind your competitors in the industries.
Internet has made the world a global village where people from all around the world can interact and exchange ideas, as well as get transactions done within a very short time without the physical presence of the different parties involved in the transaction.
So, to be effective and efficient is your sales job, you have to make sure that you leverage on the power of the smartphone.
Through phone calls, emails, social media platforms and other functions embedded in smartphones, your labor should be reduced by half if only you can harness the benefits of the smartphone.
- Social engagement with buyers
Social engagement with customers is a sure way of endearing the customers or buyers to you.
You have to give them the belief that you value their friendship and would do anything humanly possible to maintain a good relationship with them.
This can’t be if you don’t show yourself to be friendly, not just in what you say but your body language too.
Trying to be friendly with customers is meant to bring the customers closer to the management of the company.
This will sure increase the sales of the company.
Friendliness with customers or buyers is one skill to maintain good customer oriented sales.
You have to be close to customers and make them the priority of the company.
Inasmuch as some customers are difficult to handle, yet you have to be at your best to achieve this feat.
If you want to feel the way a customer feels, get into their thought line and try to put yourself in their shoes and judge their reaction from your findings.
This is a good way to understand what empathy is all about and the role it plays in customer service.
Empathy makes you not to misjudge the actions of a customer because every customer wants value for their money and as such can feel uncomfortable when things are not the way they expect.
Try understanding the customer’s point and do your best to address the matter as quickly as you can.
Empathy should show in your reaction to customer complaints and anger.
It is not a good idea to use unfriendly language towards customers even when it seems they are blowing issues out of proportion.
You need to calm the situation and empathize with them.
- Marketing skills in sales
Products are meant to be in the market and not kept in the company.
Those products need to get to the end user as soon as possible without delay.
Remember that competitors of your company will always try to find a way to reach the customers before you.
So, what’s the way forward? Marketing skills is the answer.
Those products cannot just get to the end user without good marketing skills from the sales team.
And one of those people that need to have this skill is you, the sales agent.
You learn marketing skills to enable you get in touch with the customers within the shortest possible time and outwit your competitors in the marketplace.
Marketing skills involve public presentation and other attributes like networking and collaborating with other heavyweights in the industry.
Patience is key to succeeding in your job and will definitely be needed by you the sales agent of your company.
You need to exercise some level of patience in order to relate well with people in the workplace and in the marketplace.
Patience is a special quality to have if you are really desperate to succeed in your job.
To deal with awkward behaviors of people in the organization or in the team altogether demands a great deal of patience on your part.
Trying to match up people’s attitude with aggression will only unsettle you in your job in the long run.
Also, with the customers, you have to be patient enough to listen to whatever they have to say, especially when they talk with the wrong tones and blow issues out of proportion.
This requires patience and not exhibition of any negative body language.
- Using sales technology to boost productivity
Using sales technology to boost sales is a good way of getting or making more profit for the company.
And you can imagine the pleasure in the heart of an employer when they can boast of a sales agent that is clever enough to reach out to customers and yield profit for the company.
It is not binding on you to use only a particular method to do your job.
In and outside the company, you are free to use any methodology that can get the job done and within the shortest possible time.
Any method that can yield maximum result is a welcome idea.
To improve on this front, you have to collaborate with different individuals in the company and also those of them outside the organization and learn from them methods that are prevalent and contemporary in the marketplace.
If you can do this, then you have your heart desire which is increased sales.
- Product knowledge
As a sales agent, it is likely that you may be confronted by customers and asked to answer certain questions unexpectedly.
This means you have to prepare well enough to defend your job any time, which has to do with explaining the functionalities of the product you are handling.
You are not expected to be a novice in the knowledge of the product you are representing.
It will be an unpleasant scenario to behold a sales agent with little or no knowledge of the product he/she is selling.
Try to have good knowledge of the product so that you will be able to defend your job within and outside the organization.
Also, having adequate knowledge of the products you are representing will definitely give you good confidence level during public presentations and other events where you might be needed to make a contribution in regards to the functionalities of your company’s products.
Sales Agent Skills for Resume
If you are writing a resume or CV for a sales agent job, you will need to show the skills and qualities that you are bringing to the job to convince the recruiter/employer that you will be effective on the job.
To complete the skills section of your resume or CV, you can apply the sales agent skills provided in this post as long as you have them.
This will certainly boost the quality of your resume and increase your chances of being hired.
Succeeding in your job as a sales agent is largely dependent on how effectively you use the above mentioned skills and qualities.
You have to be at your best to remain in your job and for that reason, the qualities and skills presented on this page are indispensable.