How to Get Into Tech Sales
A Guide on Technology Sales Jobs
The technology industry is booming around the country, and there are countless positions available that need to be filled. Surprisingly, sales positions are some of the most difficult roles to fill in tech. And while the industry as a whole suffers from a skills shortage, sales should be one of the most enticing careers to have in tech. Knowing this, you might wonder how to get into tech sales.
If you’re good with people and enjoy helping others solve problems, you could be a good fit for a technology sales job. In addition to good starting salaries and commission, tech sales offer good upward mobility and career options. Keep reading to find out how to enter the world of tech sales.
What Is Tech Sales?
Tech sales is a profession focused on the selling of technology such as hardware, software, or IT services to customers. Technology sales professionals sell these products and services to individuals and companies. Tech sales professionals work for startups, mid-size tech companies, and even big tech giants like Apple, Google, Amazon, and Facebook.
Technical sales jobs are everywhere, and they offer a number of perks over traditional sales and customer service roles. These positions pay handsome salaries, in addition to commissions and other traditional benefits of a sales job.
Technology Sales Job Outlook
According to data presented by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for sales engineers is expected to rise by 6% between 2021 and 2031. This is as fast as the growth average for other professions in the US.
What Do Tech Salespeople Do?
Tech sales professionals interact with people and businesses to help identify their problems and provide solutions through tech products and services offered by their company. In order to succeed in this role, they need excellent interpersonal and negotiation skills to help them deal with clients from different backgrounds and with different needs. The specifics of your tech sales job description can vary according to the role and company you work for.
Tech Sales Job Description: Key Responsibilities
Technology sales professionals have a range of responsibilities. While individual requirements vary between companies and positions, we’ve compiled a list of the key elements in a technology sales job description to help you get a better idea of what the job entails.
Learning the Product
Technology sales positions require representatives to thoroughly research the products they sell, and to understand them inside and out. Dealing with businesses can be stressful, as most business owners have little tolerance for errors. As a tech sales rep, you’ll need to learn your products and demonstrate them adequately.
Follow-Ups and Customer Satisfaction
Long-term relationships are important in the world of technology sales. That means it’s the job of the tech salesperson to follow up with prospects and clients to ensure everything is working for them.
Working on a Team
Working with other members of the sales team is a valuable activity. Sometimes, multiple professionals work on the same project, especially for large clients. Being a team player means everyone wins, including the client.
Closing the Deal
As a salesperson, you’ll be required to perform the somewhat uncomfortable (for some) task of closing the deal. Turning a prospect into a client is the goal, and that requires some well-developed closing skills.
Networking is a huge part of technology sales, as deals often come in by word-of-mouth. When selling complex systems and technology products, building relationships with the right people can be extremely valuable. Making friends and speaking with prospects is a big part of the industry.
Product demonstrations are especially important in technology sales. As the representative of a product or service, you must show the client how their problems will be solved by the solutions you are offering. To do so, it’s important to ensure that the client understands what you’re talking about, and what you have to offer.
What Are the Required Skills for Tech Sales Careers?
In order to begin a tech sales career, you need to have some core skills to help you effectively engage with customers and successfully market tech products. Keep reading to learn the essential tech sales skills you should possess before you decide to jump into this field.
A certain level of charisma is necessary for a technology sales position. Essentially, salespeople who get along with others have a huge advantage. Building trust is essential to a good sales relationship, and a good personality can be very helpful.
Attention to Detail
Selling highly complex technology products isn’t easy. And as we mentioned earlier, it’s important to understand all the products you sell. Strong attention to detail can help you remember the facts when a customer needs them, and avoid overlooking an obvious solution to a client’s need.
Motivation and Drive
Like many other well-paying sales careers, technology sales is a field that requires personal motivation and drive. Long hours and stressful situations are common in the field, so it’s important that you are able to manage a tough schedule and quickly overcome any failures.
How Can You Become a Tech
There are several paths you can follow to get into tech sales. For instance, you can obtain a bachelor’s degree in business or marketing. Having a tech background can also help you break into this field. If you’re coming from a different field altogether and want quick training to start looking for tech sales jobs, there are also tech sales bootcamps available.
Tech Sales Bootcamps
Tech sales bootcamps are fast, intensive programs designed to place students in jobs as quickly as possible and with as much industry knowledge as possible. Many tech sales boot camps offer job guarantees, and some are tuition-free as long as students choose to work for a partner company for a certain amount of time.
College and university programs can provide you with a solid background to help you enter the field of tech sales. There is no such thing as a tech sales degree, but relevant degrees such as marketing, business administration, or engineering can provide you with the right mix of tech and sales skills. Degrees are also a good way to ensure career mobility and increase your chances of earning a high salary.
Many tech sales professionals come from other sales backgrounds, such as medical or automotive sales. If you are transitioning from these fields into tech sales, self-study is a great way to learn the nuances of your new field and complement your existing skills and knowledge without having to invest in additional training.
Tech Sales Fellowships
Another way to gain the necessary skills for a successful tech sales career is by signing up for a tech sales fellowship, such as the one offered by SV Academy. A tech sales fellowship provides training and job placement support to fellows so they can learn the necessary skills and land a job quickly.
How Much Do Tech
Sales Professionals Make?
According to Glassdoor, the average tech sales salary is $77,336 per year. In addition to this base pay, tech sales professionals are estimated to make an additional $33,775 on commissions, cash bonuses, tips, and profit sharing. Top earners in the field are estimated to earn close to $151,000.
Technology Sales Salary by City
A number of factors can influence technology sales salaries, including location, experience, and education. Below are the average technical sales engineer salaries in some of the highest-paying cities in the US for this profession, according to Indeed.
|Menlo Park, CA||$102,971|
|San Francisco, CA||$96,765|
What Companies Are Hiring Tech Salespeople?
- Apple. Apple is known across the world for its innovative and intuitive hardware and software designs. They are always on the lookout for experienced sales professionals to break into new markets.
- HP. HP has a strong reputation for developing personal computers, printers, and other tech supplies. They are one of the best companies for tech sales.
- AT&T. AT&T is the largest telecommunications company by revenue in the world. It offers tech sales professionals competitive pay and the opportunity to market products used by millions.
- Microsoft. Microsoft is known worldwide for its computer software, consumer electronics, personal computers, and related products and services. Tech sales professionals have a chance to work at the forefront of tech development at Microsoft.
- Dell. Dell is a US-based tech company known for developing computers and related products, as well as offering repair services and tech support to customers.
How to Get Into Tech Sales FAQ
Is sales a good career?
Yes, sales is a good career. If you have the right skills, you can make a generous salary that is supplemented through commissions, bonuses, and company profit-sharing agreements. In addition, it gives you the chance to interact with customers directly to help satisfy their needs.
What degree do you need for tech sales?
The type of degree you need for tech sales can vary. You can break into this field with a degree in business administration or management, as well as a more tech-oriented degree such as engineering. However, not all tech sales positions require a degree, and many organizations will accept bootcamp training or equivalent experience instead.
What should a sales resume look like?
A sales resume should include any experience related to sales, regardless of the field. In addition, it should include any tech education or experience you have, to demonstrate your ability to understand and effectively market an organization’s tech products and services. It should also highlight your interpersonal and negotiation skills.
How long does it take to complete a tech sales coding bootcamp?
Tech sales bootcamps can last anywhere from a few weeks to several months, but a span of three to six months is the average for many bootcamps. You can opt to study full-time and finish your program faster, but many opt for part-time study, which takes longer but offers more flexibility.