How to Prepare for a Sales Interview With Tips

Sales Interview Tips | Examples |

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Interviewing for a new sales job is an exciting opportunity, which is why it’s important to go into it prepared. You can feel more confident about your interview by reviewing some helpful tips. In this article, you will receive a comprehensive list of sales interview tips and learn how they can help you in your job search.

What are sales interview tips?

Sales interview tips are timely and specific pieces of advice for people preparing for sales interviews. Sales positions require a definitive set of skills and qualities, which means sales interviews can differ from interviews for other types of jobs. Knowing how to approach this type of interview can help you make a positive impression on employers.

How will sales interview tips help your job search?

Using these tips will not only demonstrate that you are well-prepared for the interview, but it will also help you show that you are a high-quality salesperson. Hiring representatives want to see candidates who are comfortable and ready for any question in their job interviews, since this indicates that they know how to prepare. Great salespeople must research clients and put together excellent sales pitches. Demonstrating these skills in an interview can go a long way toward receiving a job offer.

Sales interview tips

Use these tips to go confidently into your next sales interview:

Know the company

Be familiar with the company’s mission statement, practices and goals. Show that you have taken the time to learn about the company by discussing how your skills and abilities fit well with current business practices or how you can help the company reach its goals.

Love the product

Know what you will be selling, and talk about the benefits of the product. Show the interviewer that you genuinely enjoy the product. Salespeople who are authentic in their love of what they are selling tend to be more successful than those who are not.

Prepare a pitch

Come to the interview with a sales pitch, either for a product the company sells or for a different item. Demonstrate your sales tactics during this sales pitch.

Sell your skills

While your resume will have a list of your skills, it’s still important to bring these skills up verbally in the interview. Show confidence in your abilities and discuss how your skills will directly and positively impact the company’s goals.

Review interview questions

Many hiring managers use a set of common questions during a sales interview. Review common sales interview questions and prepare answers ahead of time. The interviewer will more than likely also ask you some questions that aren’t on that list, so take the time to prepare your own list of possible questions and answers as well.

Understand the marketing

Know how the company handles its marketing and be familiar with recent marketing campaigns. Salespeople work closely with the marketing team and will rely on them heavily to engage new clients. Show that you are aware of the connection between sales and marketing, and demonstrate your appreciation for the work the marketing team does.

Pretend you’re making a sale

During your interview, imagine that you are selling yourself. Prepare a sales pitch for why you are the best candidate for the position by using appropriate sales tactics. This shows the interviewer your sales skills in real-time.

Bring evidence of your sales success

If you have sales experience, bring reports of your past sales. Discussing your sales successes is much more powerful if you have evidence to support it. Additionally, leaving a copy of your sales record with the interviewer gives them the numbers to review later with other company stakeholders. Of course, abide by any privacy requests your previous clients or company may expect.

Prepare references

Bring a list of past clients with whom you still have a relationship to the interview. In addition to your reference list of former supervisors, a list of past clients will go a long way when demonstrating your influence and success in the industry.

Practice the STAR method

The STAR method is a practice for comprehensively answering interview questions.

STAR is an acronym that stands for Situation, Task, Action and Result:

  • Situation. Use an example to answer the interviewer’s question. Begin by explaining the situation.
  • Task. Next, describe the task you were responsible for.
  • Action. Then, explain the action you took to complete the task.
  • Result. Finally, describe the result of your action.

The STAR method ensures that your answer will clearly demonstrate the value your actions added to former employers.

Use your body language

Body language is a fantastic way to demonstrate confidence, interest and ease during an interview. Keep your arms open with your hands visible to convey open-mindedness, and make eye contact to show confidence. Smile and nod as the interviewer talks to show interest and active listening.

Create rapport

Focus on building a connection with the interviewer as soon as possible. Rapport is a fantastic way to make everyone involved in the interview feel comfortable, and it will demonstrate your ability to set clients at ease with your friendly demeanor.

Share appropriately

Your interviewer may ask you to share information about yourself and your life outside of work. Make sure you think carefully about how you respond. It’s fine to give some personal details, especially when asked, but make sure the details you share are appropriate and still relevant to the skills or qualities you can use on the job.

End on a positive note

End the interview positively by stating how much you enjoyed meeting the interviewer and having the opportunity to interview for the company. Smile and exit the interview with confidence. Remember to follow up after the interview with a thank you note for the interviewer.

Set up your voicemail

Many people choose not to answer phone calls from numbers they don’t recognize, but that means they might miss important phone calls. Make sure your voicemail is active and set up with a professional message in case the interviewing company calls you after the interview.

Give your attention

Make sure you give your full attention to the interview. Put your phone away, keep headphones out of sight and avoid playing on tablets or computers. Even if you are waiting for the interview to begin, use this time to review your notes and questions rather than scrolling through your phone.

Dress professionally

Wear an outfit you would wear on a sales call. Show through your dress and grooming that you are a professional person who can be trusted to represent the company well when out meeting clients.

Bring ideas

Come to the interview with ideas to help improve the sales department. Depending on the specifics of the job, this could be a list of possible client leads or a few new sales pitches to try.

Ask questions

Prepare questions to ask the interviewer. If appropriate and related, ask the questions as the interview proceeds to keep the tone conversational. Do save at least two or three questions for the end of the interview. It can also help to bring a notepad and write down any questions you think of as the interview progresses and ask them at the end. Preparing questions shows that you have a solid interest in the position and company.

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