New technological breakthroughs are made daily in time-saving apps, customer-centric software, and shiny new gadgets. But without IT sales professionals telling the world how brilliant these products are, nobody would ever buy them. That said, the job of an IT Salesperson remains a total mystery to most people. So what is IT Sales all about? This article explains how to get into IT Sales and why you might choose this career.
What is IT Sales?
To the uneducated, that might seem like a dumb question. However, there’s a lot more to selling IT products than you might think.
To understand the subject a little better, imagine you’re a company owner. Your business is booming, but it has reached a point where you know that you need to invest in new marketing software to grow the business further. You narrow your choices down to three options, but you still can’t decide which will be the best for your business.
Choosing the right solution will increase brand awareness, speed up customer inquiries, boost sales, and increase profits. On the other hand, making the wrong decision could create a massive administrative headache. Also, choosing an unsuitable product may not enable your business to achieve the desired results. So how do you make an informed choice?
Of course, whichever product you choose is down to you. However, a skilled salesperson who understands precisely how the system works will be able to help you decide. A sales rep’s job is to help buyers understand how a product or service will solve their problems and help them achieve their goals. This might be through sharing technical product knowledge or giving product demonstrations.
Is IT Sales a Good Career?
Many people are passionate about technology but have no desire to learn to code. For those individuals, IT Sales is an alternative career that comes with the same high earning potential as some IT roles. However, while you get to demonstrate your technical expertise, no coding knowledge is required.
Benefits of Working in IT Sales
Working in a sales environment is not for everyone. A sales role usually comes with targets or KPIs that staff must meet. Some people don’t respond well to that kind of pressure; it makes them stressed out. Others find having goals to work towards highly motivational and get a thrill out of smashing their targets.
IT Sales can be a financially fruitful career choice if you have sales skills and a passion for technology. Here are the six most significant advantages of working in tech sales:
Geek Out to Your Heart’s Content!
Imagine how awesome it would be working in a job where you talk about your favourite subject all day long. Take the Apple store, for example. Its sales staff gets to play with some of the coolest tech gadgets on the market daily. If you ever speak to their sales teams, they are super knowledgeable and always eager to help. It’s almost impossible to walk into one of their stores without leaving with the latest iPhone.
You might think that’s just because Apple make fantastic phones. While that may be true, Apple store staff are highly trained to handle every stage of the sales process. So much so that Apple customers don’t even realise they’re being sold to.
High Earning Potential
Sales jobs always come with a commission structure on top of their salary, so the more sales you make, the more money you earn. This commission is often uncapped too, so if you’re good at your job, the sky is the limit!
Autonomy Over Your Workload
As long as they hit their KPIs, IT Sales executives are given great autonomy over how they do their jobs. Sales jobs also often come with a company car and involve lots of travelling to meet clients.
Many people plod along in their role, not knowing whether their manager thinks they do a good job or not. That is most certainly not the case in sales. Sales Management will continuously make you aware of how well you are doing and always celebrate your successes.
Satisfy Your Competitive Nature
People who excel in sales are often highly competitive and get a real kick out of smashing their targets. However, this satisfaction is only part of the reward; Large companies often use competitions to motivate their top sales staff with prizes.
Be in Charge of Your Destiny
Good salespeople are never out of work; in fact, they are often their company’s most valuable asset. This puts them in the enviable position of being able to take their pick of available opportunities.
How to Get Into IT Sales
One of the best things about IT Sales is that it has exceptionally high earning potential while being available to applicants without a degree. Often hiring managers only require applicants to have good communication skills and the desire to succeed. However, to land one of the more glamorous IT Sales jobs, you will be expected to prove that you can hit targets.
If you’re interested in a career in selling IT products or services, your career path might look something like this:
IT Sales Executive
Entry-level Sales Executive jobs involve a lot of cold calling. However, it is becoming more common to identify leads through prospecting on LinkedIn or other social networks.
However, they manage it; A Sales Executive aims to convince business clients to book an Account Executive appointment. This next appointment moves the customer to the next stage of the sales funnel, and, therefore, is one step closer to a purchase.
Sales staff don’t close any deals at this level, so their target is often to spend a minimum of time talking to customers on the phone. Cold calling is something newbie salespeople commonly struggle with. Consequently, lower-level roles seem to have extremely high staff turnover rates. Although, perseverance can open the door to more glamorous opportunities once you prove yourself with only a few years of sales experience.
IT Sales at this level can be challenging, repetitive and not much fun if you have a bad experience. For this reason, it’s worth doing your research to find out which companies offer the best training programs and mentoring schemes.
Entry-level IT Sales Executives get paid in the region of £20,000 to £30,000 plus commission.
Account Executives meet with potential clients who will buy your company’s products. Jobs at this level require delivering presentations or demonstrating how software products work.
Account Executives get to experience the excitement of closing deals, so they are usually rewarded commission at a percentage of their sales. This is where the job becomes even more rewarding. You get to see the direct impact that your work has on the company you work for, and you also reap the financial rewards.
Account Executive’s salaries fall around £28,000 – £40,000 plus commission.
Business Development Manager
You will be eager to progress to the next level with detailed knowledge of your market sector and your company’s products.
Business Development Managers take care of existing clients but look for opportunities within the market where their clients’ have a problem.
For example, let’s imagine a company supplies their client with an email marketing system. A BDM might work with their client to deliver a bespoke landing page builder with heat maps. This new add-on would then become a product which the company would offer to other clients.
Business Development Managers’ salaries are typically in the region of £30,000 to £55,000 plus commission.
IT Recruitment Consultant
Working as an IT Recruitment Consultant is an alternative job role that requires a similar level of tenacity and technical knowledge. However, rather than selling IT products or services to potential customers, technical recruitment consultants sell the idea of working in a particular job role to potential candidates.
You might find this article useful if you would like to learn more about what IT recruitment consultants do.
A Few Final Words on Getting into IT Sales
The job titles and suggested salaries mentioned in this article are meant as a rough guide but are in line with UK market rates in 2021. Individual companies will have specific salary bandings and commission structures. As a rule, businesses will not disclose how their commission structure works to anyone outside their company. Therefore you should not expect to become privy to this information until you become their employee.
We hope this article has given you a better idea of getting into IT Sales and whether it appeals to you. If you are target driven and tenacious, getting into IT Sales can be an extremely lucrative career move and be exceptionally financially rewarding. However, you should be prepared to work hard and spend a great deal of time on the phone in your early career.
If you are curious to find out more about IT Sales job descriptions and salaries, please visit our latest jobs page. If it’s not for you, please share this article on social media where others can learn more about this curious career choice.