13 Sales Communication Skills (Plus How To Develop Them)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 10 May 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Building a career as a salesperson requires developing several soft skills. One such skill is strong communication which helps you engage your target audience and close deals effectively. If you want to improve your communication skills, you can develop several associated skills that can help manage your client conversations. In this article, we explain why these communication skills are important and discuss 13 sales communication skills.

Related: How To Improve Your Sales Skills: A Step-By-Step Guide

Importance Of Sales Communication Skills

Sales communication skills are important because they help you present your organisation's products and services to potential customers effectively. These skills also help you build relationships with prospective customers. You are more likely to reach your sales targets, build credibility among clients, and improve productivity with strong communication skills. Reaching your targets can help you obtain more satisfaction and fulfilment from your job.

Related: The Role Of A Sales Executive: Responsibilities And Skills

13 Sales Communication Skills To Help Your Career Grow

Here are 13 skills related to communication that can help you become a more efficient and productive salesperson:

1. Attention

When communicating with a potential customer, being attentive and focusing on the conversation is vital. Whether it is a face-to-face meeting or a phone conversation, give your full attention to the client. By doing so, you can focus on all essential points and solve many of your client's doubts. Also, it makes the customer feel valued and respected when you give them your undivided attention. To develop this skill, try to minimise distractions, learn mindfulness and reduce multitasking. During a sales interview, you can talk about how you prioritise your tasks so that each task has your complete attention.

Related: 10 Ways To Improve Your English Communication Skills

2. Active listening

Active listening skills help you listen to what the prospect is saying and frame your response based on their unique requirements. Salespeople typically are active listeners, so they can modify their pitch according to how the customer interprets their challenges and requirements. To become an active listener, you can learn to process feedback correctly. By asking relevant questions and confirming their opinions, you can make prospects and leads heard. During an interview, you can demonstrate active listening skills by responding thoughtfully and listening actively to the questions.

Related: Active Listening Skills: Definition And Examples

3. Body language interpretation

Knowledge about non-verbal communication, like body language, is essential to sustain meaningful conversations. For example, if your prospect leans towards you, makes eye contact, smiles or unfolds their hands, it typically means they have interest in the conversation. If they seem distracted, show uneasiness or look away, it can mean they want to end the conversation. You can develop these skills through practice. By improving your body language, you can positively influence the discussion with a prospect. A recruiter is also likely to read your body language to evaluate your soft skills and confidence during an interview.

4. Tone

As a salesperson, you could talk to different kinds of people with varying patterns of speech. It is essential to know how to modulate the tone of your voice so that the other person feels comfortable talking to you. For example, if a prospect talks slowly, you can slow down your speech so that they can understand you better. You can improve your tone through voice exercises and by recording your phone calls for review. Mention examples of speaking at events, conferences and managing phone calls on your resume and during sales interviews to highlight your voice modulation skills.

5. Empathy

When trying to sell a product or a service, it becomes important to understand the potential buyer's perspective. When you know what challenges they face, you can suggest the best option for them to consider purchasing. This understanding comes from having strong empathy. To become more empathetic, talk to different kinds of people and consider the viewpoints of others. Develop curiosity without judgement or forming any sort of bias. You can express your empathy during an interview by having a compassionate conversation with the interviewer.

6. Clarity and conciseness

Prospective buyers are typically interested to know how a product or service can help them. If you are trying to sell a complex product with many different functions, you can simplify the pitch and talk only about specific features. This saves the buyer's time and potentially makes them want to explore more about the product.

To develop this skill of presenting information concisely, educate yourself thoroughly on the solution you want to sell and focus on the customer's requirement for the solution. In a job interview, you can give an example of how you simplified complex features of solutions at your last job.

7. Subject matter expertise

To sell solutions to a prospective buyer, it is essential for salespeople to be aware of the industry's trends. This means that in addition to knowing the product, researching the aspects of the industry, including challenges, competitors and growth is vital. Prospective clients can trust you more if you have in-depth knowledge about their business. Taking courses and balancing them with research at the workplace are ways to improve this skill. During a job interview, you can talk about a specific industry and its target as an example of your subject matter expertise.

8. Honesty

When you are honest about any limitations of your product, customers can feel like they can trust you, and the conversation becomes easier. If there are questions you cannot answer at some point, accept it and let them know that you can get back to them with the correct information. Building this trust can be essential in converting leads. Be consciously honest by reflecting on your habits and refraining from overpromising the benefits of a product. Your honesty reflects during an interview when you answer questions about ethics, integrity and conflicts at the workplace.

9. Persistence

Persistence means following up creatively without annoying the prospective customer. Instead of sending repetitive emails, you can try to re-engage prospects differently if they have not been responding. For instance, you can talk about a different product or send them an offer on the quotation. Once you have their attention again, you can discuss the original proposal. In an interview or on your resume, you can talk about leading a project and achieving targets through perseverance and communication with your team members.

10. Written communication

While most salespeople focus on converting leads through phone calls or face-to-face interactions, a large part of the job requires you to be good with written communication. This includes sending emails, creating reports, making presentations and collecting product information. Ensuring that you have excellent diction and grammar in your emails can positively impact your prospective buyers. You can improve your written communication skills through training, sharing with peers and proofreading all your communication. Make a concise and error-free resume along with a cover letter to demonstrate your written communication skills ahead of an interview.

Related: Written Communication Skills: Definitions And Examples

11. Professionalism

Maintaining a professional attitude can help make a favourable impression on prospects and leads. Dress formally and use a professional tone. This could make your customer feel comfortable and willing to continue the discussion. If the customer shares personal details, you can probably relax and cultivate a relationship with them. Even then, maintain a degree of professionalism based on what the customer expects. Being punctual, maintaining integrity, taking initiative and being productive are some ways you can develop the skill and express it in an interview.

Related: Common Business Communication Skills And Their Importance

12. Acceptance

In all your interactions as a salesperson, treat your prospective buyers with respect. It helps to listen to them attentively and accept their viewpoints. Even when you know your product well, you might create a lasting impression on your client when you express humility and a desire to help them through their challenges. To develop this skill, focus on the strengths of people around you and celebrate their accomplishments. During job interviews, you could give examples from your last job where you encouraged diversity and inclusivity among your team members.

13. Enthusiasm

When you sound more enthusiastic and positive, it is more likely that your prospective customer listens attentively to you and shows more interest in your demonstration or solution. Being friendly and motivated can add energy to your conversation and help reach your sales targets effectively. To be more enthusiastic and positive, maintain a good work-life balance, take breaks to spend time on things you like and focus on the things that are going well. On your resume or during an interview, gives examples of activities at work where your positivity helped solve team challenges.

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