Getting Started in the Best Sales Jobs in London [2021]

About Sales Jobs in London

A role in sales is universal. Almost every organisation in every industry has one. Without salespersons, industries like retail and manufacturing will find it harder to stay in business.

Salespersons serve as a bridge between customers and companies. They identify a potential customer’s need and deliver that need via products and services the organisation offers. This makes sales a pivotal component of a business’s success. In this article, you’ll find out more about how to get your sales career started.

What Do London Sales Jobs Entail?

Sales professionals concern themselves with activities that impact the company’s revenues positively. Usually, these activities involve lead conversion, customer trust-building, and customer retention.

In lead conversion, potential customers already know the products and services because of the company’s marketing efforts. In this case, it’s the salesperson’s responsibility to close the sale by providing information relevant to the customer’s needs. For instance, car sales jobs in London often make their sales pitch after inquiring about the customer’s needs and personal life like family size and daily routine. Knowing this information will help the car dealer offer the right car for the customer.

The role of a salesperson doesn’t end after a sale. Professionals know that customers can be an excellent source of referrals and recommendations, so it’s essential to gain their loyalty and trust.

Lastly, the top salespersons of a company know that customer retention is the key to a successful sales career path. Customer retention implies repeat sales, which results in a continuous flow of revenue. Experienced salespersons achieve customer retention by taking the time to do after-sales calls and services to maintain a positive relationship with clients. When satisfied, customers are more likely to purchase again, recommend the company, and leave excellent reviews.

Duties in Jobs in Sales

Working as a salesperson includes varying responsibilities depending on the company and industry you work for. Essentially, most roles have the following duties:

  • Set appointments with customers
  • Meet or speak with customers to provide product information and benefits
  • Ensure products are available in stores and other channels
  • Generate new leads
  • Conduct after-sales calls
  • Find and penetrate a different target market
  • Understand current market trends
  • Collaborate with the marketing department to develop new sales strategies
  • Research and understand the strategy of competition

Types of Sales Jobs

Not all sales jobs have the same functions and job descriptions. Undoubtedly, the sales director’s role will be different from that of a sales representative. Understanding the distinctions among the different types of sales roles will help you decide which path to take.

Sales Development Representative

These are entry-level positions that rarely require sales experience. This means that people fresh out of college can easily apply to these entry-level sales jobs in London.

The role focuses on moving prospective clients through the sales funnel. They do this through lead qualification, cold calling, and email outreach. The key to landing a sales development representative role is being ambitious and eager to learn.

Inbound Sales Representative

Inbound sales representatives deal with clients who have expressed a certain level of interest in the company’s products or services. These clients subscribe to the organisations’ newsletter, send inquiries through the company website, or generally contact the company. Most inbound sales jobs in London deal with clients the company already had prior interactions with. So, as opposed to sales development representatives, inbound sales do warm-calling.

Account Executive

Salespersons in entry-level positions eventually move up to be account executives. Management expects account executives to take ownership and responsibility for the company’s key accounts. They also address customers’ issues to ensure customer satisfaction and retention. You could say they touch on every component of the sales and customer retention process.

Apart from managing accounts, sales executive jobs in London also have more complex tasks, such as upselling, planning, strategising, and reporting.

Sales Operations Manager

Sales operations managers are sales professionals that work behind the scenes. They are in charge of making sure sales teams have the necessary tools to bring in clients. In addition, professionals in this position manage data, forecast sales, create strategies, and monitor the effectiveness of the representatives.

Sales Director

Sales director positions are among the high-paying sales jobs in London. These are usually taken by tenured salespersons who focus on recruiting and leading an entire sales team. Professionals in this position are experienced in leadership, management, and sales.

Work Environment in London Sales Jobs

Working in sales can sometimes mean having an incredibly varied work environment. Working conditions typically depend on the position and duties it entails.

Salespersons in the retail industry often spend most of their working hours on their feet and speaking with customers face-to-face. In addition to catering to customers, some retail jobs in London also entail keeping the retail floor in order.

Sales professionals working in wholesale or with big clients rarely go out and speak with customers in person. Most conduct their business and address client issues and queries over the phone. However, clients still request on-site visits or face-to-face meetings with their account executive.

On the other hand, field sales jobs in London require employees to do door-to-door selling to individual clients or companies. For instance, medical equipment salespersons will have to travel from one hospital to another to find potential buyers.

Overall, a career in sales isn’t exceptionally stressful under normal circumstances. However, some sales professionals will find themselves particularly busy in some seasons, especially during the holiday season. Some companies also impose sales quotas on their employees.

Those who want to pursue a sales career should prepare themselves for an extraordinarily pumped-up work environment. In this kind of occupation, you can expect to work with target-driven colleagues typically buried in their work because managers often evaluate salespeople through targets and numbers, which can also be a source of pressure.

Work Schedules

Much like the working conditions, the typical schedule of salespersons differs from one position to another. There are roles like retail sales assistant jobs in London that require working odd hours. This often includes evenings, weekends, and holidays.

If this schedule is not amenable to you, there are still positions that stick to regular office hours. However, working overtime is still generally inevitable in sales. In fact, 28% of sales directors or VPs work over 60 hours per week.

How to Become a Salesperson

Most employers don’t require their applicants to have a bachelor’s degree or sales experience for entry-level sales positions. In particular, sales assistant jobs in London will only need an applicant who’s eager to learn. However, you can’t say the same for managerial positions that often require several years of experience as a sales representative. So, this begs the question, “How do I get started?”

Education

There are several ways to obtain an educational footing in sales. A student can enrol in short courses and training or earn a bachelor’s degree in universities that offer sales courses. Completing a master’s degree is also a good way to increase your knowledge and credentials.

Some universities offer work-based programmes and short courses that provide the finisher with essential knowledge and skills. These skills can help an aspiring applicant of top sales jobs land these roles successfully.

Those who want to earn a bachelor’s degree can take sales and marketing management courses. Some companies even offer financial support and sponsorship for employees who want to pursue their studies.

Certifications and Registrations

The Institute of Sales Management is the trailblazer in supporting people employed in sales. This organisation offers seven levels of qualification that help professionals move up the corporate ladder faster. Completing these levels might help sales professionals land the best-paid sales jobs in the UK.

Their qualification levels are written by experts in the field and are designed to equip you with the necessary knowledge in sales, sales theories, and account management. All seven levels are also recognised by the examinations regulator in the UK, Ofqual.

Important Qualities

Like any other occupation in the UK, succeeding in a career in sales and marketing requires specific skills and qualities.

Confidence

Rejection is a common stumbling block for sales professionals. Not all prospective clients will want to purchase your company’s products and services, so sales professionals, especially sales representatives, should have high levels of confidence, determination, and positivity.

Employers looking to fill their highest-paying sales jobs will go for applicants who exude unwavering faith in themselves. This confidence will help sales representatives pitch products and services in the face of resistance and rejection.

Resilience

Aside from confidence, salespersons need to be resilient. They need to be able to respond positively to setbacks. Salespersons will likely experience obstacles in each sale, so they must overcome every challenge thrown their way.

Active Listening Skills

Ask any person holding sales and marketing jobs in London, and they will tell you that communication is fundamental to building trust. Clients will always want to feel that the company they support and patronise value them. That said, nothing makes customers feel more valued than knowing their sales representatives listen to their concerns and issues.

Apart from that, clients understand their own needs better than anyone. A salesperson can only address a problem if they clearly understand where the client is coming from.

Rapport Building Skills

All sales jobs in London require rapport building skills. To make a sale, a sales representative needs to establish a good relationship with prospective clients. Only when you have a trusting connection with the client can you convince them you’re the best person to work with.

Drive for Self-Improvement

All top salespersons have the motivation for self-improvement. They always want to improve their craft and serve their clients better. Because they are constantly learning and growing their skills, clients will want to keep working with them. Ultimately, this brings in more sales and increases the customer retention rate.

Average Pay for London Sales Jobs

According to one survey, the average annual salary of salespersons in London and the rest of the UK is £25,000. Additionally, sales managers earn almost twice this amount, ranging between £40,000 and £54,896. Conversely, sales jobs in London for applicants with no experience in sales usually offer an average income of £18,626.

Job Outlook

Sales roles aren’t limited to the retail industry. Today, all organisations and businesses employ sales professionals to reach out to more clients and increase sales and customer retention. Industries like finance, pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, and logistics have their own sales team. Also, the rise of technology and software is giving rise to IT sales jobs in London that weren’t available before.

Job Prospects

Even though almost all industries employ sales representatives, some businesses and organisations have better compensation than others. For example, the popularity of digital media today translates to high earning potential for the industry. As companies purchase offerings like search engine optimisation and pay-per-click advertising, digital media sales jobs in London are growing in demand. According to statistics, these types of sales jobs have an average annual salary of £30,585.

The rise of sales jobs in the software industry is another positive outcome of improving technology. Software companies have openings for software sales jobs in London to help sell programmes, software, and applications to large corporations and organisations. Because the software industry is also a highly competitive market, companies hire only the top talents and entice them with high compensation. For example, software salespersons can expect commissions to go as high as £45,000. However, an income survey shows that the top 10% of earners in this role receive up to £200,000 in commission.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the best-paid sales jobs in the UK?

Based on an annual report for sales jobs in the UK, sales directors appear to be the best-paid role in sales. A sales director’s average annual income is £72,806.75. Interestingly, sales professionals working in the software industry earn the next highest average annual income of £53,292.08. Currently, this makes software companies the best industry for sales professionals in terms of salary.

What is a good base salary for a sales job?

Recent data shows that the average annual salary for salespersons across different industries is £25,000, which is a good base salary. However, those relatively new to sales and have no experience will probably have lower base salaries that can go as low as £18,626 per year. So, it’s a good thing that most sales jobs also earn commissions on top of their base salary.

Is a sales job stressful?

Sales representatives with a natural knack for selling products and services rarely find sales jobs stressful. They can hit their targets without breaking a sweat while receiving generous commissions and base pay. However, some sales professionals experience stress and work long hours just to meet their sales targets. Apart from missing targets, rejections and objections from clients can also become a source of stress in a sales job.

Is sales a good career?

Working in sales can be a promising career for people seeking growth, personal satisfaction, financial stability, and unparalleled income potential. Moreover, salespersons who can easily translate their passion for a product and service into sales can earn high commissions.

Aside from this, sales jobs in London don’t usually require relevant educational background and many years of experience, especially for entry-level positions. Lastly, a sales professional can reach the position of sales director in a company by completing training courses and showing exemplary performance.