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Sales Interview Questions

Updated: May 13



Sales interviews are quite different from other job interviews; the skills you need to be a great sales agent are unique, and so are the interview questions. To help you prepare for your sales interview, you will find this article has collected the most common sales interview questions and put them all in one place.

 

You want to stand out from the other applicants and demonstrate your confidence and people skills in your interview. So, read these example sales interview questions, example answers, and tips for giving your interviewer a great impression on the day.

 

"Why did You Decide to Work in Sales?"


This question is an opportunity for you to show your passion for sales and explain why you're a good fit for the job. Your interviewer is looking for someone who cares about closing a deal, and believes in their product. Your real enthusiasm for sales is something that is very difficult to fake. To give a good impression, focus on the parts of the sales process that you are most passionate about and your feelings will shine through.


So, to prepare for this question think about:


  • what makes you excited about sales?

  • which part of the process is the most exciting or satisfying for you?

  • why did you begin in sales?

  • do you enjoy helping a customer get the perfect product?

  • do you enjoy representing your company in the best way possible?


Example answer:


"I am a people person. I really enjoy connecting with people and figuring out how to solve their problems. For me, sales isn't just about numbers, it's about making sure everyone walks away from a deal feeling like they've gained something. It's a win for the customer when they find what they need, and it's a win for us when we can provide it. I get a real buzz out of seeing the customer walk away happy and satisfied."

 

"Tell Me about Your Sales Experience."


Your interviewer already knows about your sales experience because they read about it in your application. So, why are they asking you to talk about it now? There are two reasons: to make sure you were honest in your application and you know more details about your experience, and to find out if you are able to sell yourself!

 

This is an opportunity to highlight your successes and demonstrate how your skills and experience make you a great fit for the job. Think about:


  • what different types of sales do you have experience in?

  • what are your major sales achievements?

  • what were you especially good at?

  • how many years of combined sales experience do you have?


Example answer:


“I've been in sales for <number> years now. In the first company I worked at, I was the one dialing up potential clients, trying to figure out the best way to help them out with one of our products. I spent a good time learning how to cold-call and prospect. After that, I worked in retail sales. I was particularly good at getting precise product matches for off-the-street clients, and surprising them with how well we could fit their needs with our different product options. I had the privilege of sealing enterprise deals and being named 'Top Salesperson' at my last company for three quarters in a row."

 

Just Starting Out in Sales? Don't Worry.


If you don't have any direct sales experience, you can still provide a strong answer by talking about your transferable skills, education, training, or your passion for the job. You'll find some more example answers below, where the applicant doesn't have sales experience:

 

Highlighting Transferable Skills:


"While I don't have direct sales experience, I have developed transferable skills that I believe would be valuable in this role. For example, in my previous job in customer service, I had to communicate effectively with customers to understand their needs and resolve their issues. Part of that was advising the client on our range of services and helping them change their contracts to something more suitable. I also had to work under pressure and meet tight deadlines, which I believe would be valuable in a fast-paced sales environment."

 

Continuous Education or Training:


"Although I haven't worked in sales before, I have completed a sales training program and learned about the fundamentals of sales. Through this program, I learned about prospecting, building relationships, and closing deals. I also had the opportunity to practice these skills in role-playing exercises and received very positive feedback on my performance from experienced sales professionals."

 

Showing Passion and Enthusiasm:


“While I may not have direct sales experience, I am passionate about this field, and have been actively researching and learning about it for a long time. I have read books and articles about sales, and attended webinars and conferences to learn from experts in the field. I am excited about the opportunity to apply my enthusiasm and drive to this role and to learn from experienced sales professionals."

 

"How do You Handle Rejection?"


No one is a winner all the time. That means that sometimes we have to handle rejection. Rejection can be painful, and some people give up when things get difficult. This question is an opportunity to demonstrate your adaptability, strength, and positive attitude.


Your interviewer is looking for someone who can:


  • continue selling after a rejection.

  • learn from rejections and improve because of them.

  • take feedback as an opportunity, and keep their passion for sales alive!


Example answer:


"Rejection is part of the job in sales, but I don't let it get me down. I understand that not every prospect will be a good fit for our company, and I see each rejection as an opportunity to learn and improve. I always follow up with prospects and ask for feedback on why they decided not to move forward, so I can understand their perspective and use that information to improve my sales approach. When you are doing sales right, every chance to improve your percentage by learning about your market is one you take."

 

"How do You Close a Deal?"


Finally, your interviewer might ask you how you approach closing a deal. They know that every salesperson is different, and you will have developed your own methods. This question is your opportunity to show your effective and friendly negotiation skills, and how you encourage brand loyalty.

 

Here's an example answer:


"Closing a deal is all about understanding the customer's needs and finding a solution that works for everyone. I always start by asking questions and listening carefully to the customer's needs and concerns, this also helps the customer to feel heard and valued. Once I understand what they need, I work with them to find which one of our products would help them best. When customers can see that you really want to help, and they feel like you care about their needs, they are much more likely to trust your brand and come back in the future. I'm comfortable with negotiation and always look for ways to create a win-win situation for both the customer and the company."

 

Wrap Up


Preparing for common sales interview questions can help you feel more confident, give your best possible answers, and increase your chances of getting the job. By showing your interviewer your real passion for sales, highlighting your past successes, demonstrating your resilience, and showing your negotiation skills, you can stand out from other candidates and show your interviewer why you're the best fit for the job. So, take some time and prepare before the day of your interview so you can show yourself at your best. You can do this!

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