Sales Interview Questions and Answers

Sales Interview Questions and Answers

This section covers commonly asked and expert level Sales Interview questions and answers. You can find conceptual, general, behavioral and experience based questions along with interesting examples and sample answers.

Who are these Sales Interview Questions useful for?

The questions presented here will be highly useful to all the freshers, entry level and experienced candidates interviewing for the roles of Sales Executive, Sales Representative, Manager etc.

Types of Questions covered here

The questions covered here come from the conceptual topics like selling styles, common cold calling mistakes to avoid, challenges in sales forecasting, sales enablement, social selling, prospecting and its types, different channels of sales, qualities of a successful sales person and other personal questions.

1. What is Sales?


Sales is an activity involving two parties - a buyer and a seller. The buyer receives goods or services in exchange of money.

Video : Sales Interview Questions and Answers

2. What are the different selling styles?


Every salesperson is different and adopts a selling style depending upon his personality and product he is selling. The different styles of selling are as follows:

i. Relationship building style: This style is used by the sales representative when they are aware that the sales process will be continuous. So, they focus more on relationship building. This is one of the most successful selling styles. The sales representatives vouching by this style adapt to different situations very easily and try to get results out of them.

ii. Need-oriented style: Here the sales representative acts a problem solver. In this style, the sales representative focuses on the existing needs of the customer. To be able to do this, the seller has to be highly tactful to be able to ask questions and understand the customer's needs.

iii. Aggressive selling Style: Here the intention of the sales representative is only to make sales in one shot. This styles works best when sales representative is working alone rather than in a team.

iv. Product-oriented Style: The sales representative working with this style is inclined towards making a product demo, explain its features and answer various type of product and service related queries.

v. Competition-oriented Style: In this style, the sales representative overcomes every objection and tries to close the deal by persuading the customer and never taking no for an answer.

3. Which of the above is the best selling style? Can one style be used always?


There is no such style as a best selling style. It is the sales person who has to see the customer and choose a style.

Along with the style, it is very important to possess the correct product knowledge, ask questions to the buyer and understand their needs properly to offer them the right product.

4. What are the common cold calling mistakes that a sales representative should avoid?


Many sales people find cold calling to be very scary. However, if done correctly this method can help you reach your prospects easily. Here are some of the common mistakes you need to avoid:

i. Not knowing the goal of the call: You should clearly know the purpose of your call. Otherwise, it will clearly show up in the conversation with the prospect.

ii. Bad Phone Etiquettes: They can really break your chances. For e.g. loud music in the background or chewing gum while talking over the phone can be very distracting.

iii. Not asking relevant questions: Asking right questions ensures that you get the required information without irritating your customers.

iv. Not preparing before the call: When you are on call, you need to get the prospect's attention. Prepare well but don't be overconfident.

v. Sending more information when not needed: Judge whether the prospect is genuinely interested or is just asking your politely to disconnect.

vi. Not being attentive: Pay attention to understand what the prospect is saying. Listen carefully. Being distracted, you might miss out on important information.

5. What are the common challenges faced by the managers in efficient sales forecast process?


Here are some of the challenges faced by the managers:

i. Lack of planning: Manual forecasting may not be efficient.

ii. Lack of information: Not having complete information about the territory and the target audience leads to a poor forecast.

iii. Non-availability of real-time data: The basis of forecast is data. If the data is stale, one can't expect an accurate forecast.

iv. Following gut feeling: Many companies follow the gut feelings of their sales representatives to forecast their sales which may not be an effective technique for various reasons.

6. What do you understand by 'Sales enablement'?


Sales enablement is a process of providing the sales representative with proper information, tools and content which can help them in carrying out their sales activity.

These help the sales representative to effectively engage the buyer throughout the buying process.

7. How can you help your sales representatives with sales enablement?


Sales Enablement tools can help your sales people tremendously in achieving their sales target by:  

i. Providing useful data: Information about the ongoing market trend, the buyer persona, and the target audience help the sales representatives in getting the deal.

ii. Providing good start with buyers: Relevant information helps the sales representative build a good rapport with the potential buyer and helps them in more conversions.

iii. Arming them with the required training: Helps in achieving more and quicker closures. This provides the company to check the effectiveness of the training program and help them develop the new ones.

iv. Influencing the buying decision: Educating the buyer with appropriate content and value-based information for their specific needs influences the prospects to make quicker decisions.