Customer sales representatives work in a range of sectors such as pharmaceuticals, insurance and retail. Also known as sales associates, sales representatives are responsible for attracting new customers to products, securing sales and maintaining company profits. Many sales representatives work toward daily, weekly and monthly targets and some earn commission on their sales.
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Educational requirements vary depending on the industry a sales representative enters. Many employers seek those who have a college degree. Courses in business administration, finance and economics are useful foundations for a career in sales. The BLS reports that high school graduates may be considered if they have proven sales experience, for example if they have successfully completed a sales internship.
All customer sales representatives should have the ability to build excellent relations with customers. According to My Job Search, customer sales representatives should have a smart, professional appearance and be able to present themselves well to clients. Good communication skills, both oral and written, and strong organizational skills are desirable characteristics of a customer sales representative
Sales Careers Online reports that regardless of the industry, sales representatives play an important part in a company’s success. A sales representative is responsible for gaining a customer's interest in the products and a securing high amount of sales. Working toward targets, sales representatives show customers products and explain features. Much of the day may be spent travelling to meet clients and buyers, updating records of client details and creating new lead databases for future use.
According to Indeed.com, the average annual salary of a customer sales representative is £26,000 as of June 2010, but many sales workers often receive additional bonus incentives related to performance and sales figures. Depending on the industry, workers may also receive additional benefits, for example, those working in insurance sales may receive marketing, transportation and retirement plans, according to the BLS.
Many sales representatives work long hours and may travel extensively to meet clients. According the BLS, many insurance sales agents often work longer than 40 hours per week and spend the evenings doing paperwork. A driving license is beneficial to the role and college graduates should enjoy the best employment prospects, according to the BLS.
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