Most Asked Sales Interview Questions
Following is the list of most frequently asked Sales Interview questions and their best possible answers.
1) What do you understand by cold calls? How is it used in call centers?
When a salesperson contacts random individuals who have not previously expressed interest in their offered products or services, these phone calls are called cold calls. Cold calling is generally done by phone or telemarketing and involves in-person visits, such as with door-to-door salespeople.
Cold calls are used in call centers to contact prospective customers, usually making a sale or introducing a product. Cold calling is also known as unsolicited home visits when the representative visits people to their home directly.
2) What is the concept of cold calling in education?
Cold Calling is a technique that can be successfully used in education. It creates an expectation that all students are ready to answer every question. This technique promotes the attention, engagement, and participation of the students in the class.
It is designed to promote active thinking during the class question and answer session. Rather than asking for a volunteer, the teacher asks the whole class and allows them to think and answer in their mind and then asks a particular student to respond.
3) What are the main benefits of cold calling in education?
Following are the main benefits of cold calling in education:
4) Are you comfortable making cold calls?
Cold calls are an essential part of sales jobs, so the interviewers want to know about your experience by asking this question. By your answer, they can also judge your personality, such as are you an extrovert? Can you start a conversation etc.? So, it would help if you were very careful while answering this question.
A Sample Answer: Yes, I can make cold calls. It is unpredictable when you dial the number, but researching the person and the company can help make this type of call successful. I have successfully used this tactic during my time in my previous company.
5) How do you stay updated on the target market?
The interviewers ask this question to see your awareness about the target market and the competitors.
A Sample Answer: In the sales jobs, we have to stay updated on the target market. So, I like to read blogs by experts, follow trends on social media, and listen to several sales podcasts. This is very useful to understand the various possible strategies and how you can use them to connect with the target market.
6) Have you consistently met your sales goals in your previous company?
The interviewers ask this question to know how your performance was in your previous company and get a sense of how you will perform in this company to meet sales goals. You should be honest in your answer and focus on the positive points.
A Sample Answer: In my previous company, I was one of the top salespersons in the department for the past three quarters. Before that, I had a really, very rough quarter. I was disappointed but then realized it was an opportunity to re-think my strategy. After that, I have completely changed my strategy, and it was exciting to see those adjustments have such a positive outcome.
7) How do you balance and maintain current relationships with generating more leads?
In sales, it is very crucial to generate new leads to enhance brand recognition. It is also crucial to balance and maintain relationships because it is key to the company's growth.
A Sample Answer: As a sales guy, I try to communicate with more and more people working in my domain. It is a critical factor to generate new leads and maintain relationships also. Sometimes, it may be challenging to balance the two, but we should decide according to the cost-benefit impact to the company.
8) What motivates you the most?
The interviewers generally ask this question to know want is your passion for this job. It is a brilliant idea to connect your response to the company's goals.
9) How did you get your most successful sale ever?
By asking this question, the interviewers want to know what strategy you use to close deals. You should explain a step-by-step scenario and ensure that your answer should showcase your best qualities as a salesperson. You should point out your most assertive and positive points and avoid bragging about yourself.
A Sample Answer: "I have got my biggest sale in my last company when I sold a five-year support and maintenance contract to XYZ Company. It is hard to believe but this deal started with a cold call. When I made the phone call, the customer shared a problem that our enterprise software could solve. That's how our interaction went in a solution-oriented way and I have provided a targeted demo of the software. At the end, I got the biggest sale of my life."
10) What do you handle customer objections?
The interviewers ask this question to see how you respond when someone denies your ideas or acts.
A Sample Answer: "When I face any type of customer objection, I take it in a positive way. After acknowledging the objection, I try to explain some other features of the product that may be beneficial to the customers."
11) Why did you choose a career in sales?
This is an obvious sales interview question and generally asked by the interviewers. While answering this question, you can show the interviewer that this is more than a job. You have to give a good reason for being in sales other than "it is a good paying job."
A Sample Answer: "I chose a career in sales because it is one of the few professions where I can get what I have wanted most. Here, I can get the reward of my hard work, strategic thinking, thorough preparation and perpetual action literally. It is one of the challenging, lucrative and rewarding jobs I have always wanted to do."
12) How would your colleagues describe you?
The interviewers ask this question to check your self-perception and get a sense of how you would fit in with the office culture.
A Sample Answer: "My colleagues always mention my persistence and praise my perseverance. My determination for work and strategy to achieve a scheduled benchmark is always praised. It also motivates me. That's why I never miss a potential powerful touch-point moment."
13) What role do social media play in your selling process?
The interviewers ask this question to see how much you are tech-savvy and how you use technology to make your job easy.
A Sample Answer: Social media is an excellent platform for sales professionals. Here, we can enhance our social area, which can benefit us later. Some professional sites such as LinkedIn allow us to better research the targets to identify their needs. Similarly, we can use Twitter and Facebook to find a common social ground to build a rapport.
14) What was the biggest mistake you made? What did you learn from it?
This question is an excellent opportunity to show what you have learned from your mistakes. Don't try to cover your mistakes up. It would be best if you mentioned your mistakes and the actions you took to correct them immediately. You can tell a specific story to emphasize what you have learned from the experience.
A Sample Answer: "I think, in the initial days of my career, the mistakes I made was talking too much. Later, I realized that I should listen closely enough during the call to find the buying signals. I learned that pauses during conversation and asking better questions to understand the thought process of the customer is very important in sales. "
15) What are the best ways to research possible clients before a sales call?
The interviewers ask this question to know your working strategy.
A Sample Answer: The best way to research possible clients before a sales call is to research them on social media platforms such as LinkedIn and Twitter. It can help us to identify their needs. We can also use competitor testimonials to learn and identify what exactly works for the customers concerning the product or services.
16) What, according to you, is the best thing or USP of our company? / What do you know about this company?
The interviewers ask this question to check how well you are prepared for the company interview and what details you have researched about the company.
A Sample Answer: "The best thing I find in this company is the relationship that the company has with long-standing clients. In my opinion it is the biggest USP of the company. It is very crucial to have a good rapport with clients in sales particularly. This thing does not encourage only the regular sales but it can also work as a reference for potential clients."
17) What are your long-term career goals?
By asking this question, the interviewers want to get a sense of your ambitions. This question also gives a clue about if you are likely to stick around or whether you might be looking for this new position in a hurry.
A Sample Answer: "I was always excited to work in sales profile in a mission-driven company such as yours. Suppose I talk about my long-term goals at present. In that case, I am looking to improve my selling skills, and later, I want to grow my leadership skills, eventually taking on managerial responsibilities.
18) How long should you pursue a client?
The interviewers ask this question to know how you sell your products and how much perseverance you may take with the client.
A Sample Answer: "The most important factor for a successful sale is the need of the client. If the client has absolutely no need at the time for a product, your constant perseverance may be annoying. So, don't unnecessarily pursue the client but be sure to check with them occasionally."
19) What did you find the most exciting thing about this sales position?
The interviewers ask this question to test whether you researched the company in advance of the Interview. In your answer, you should reveal what motivates you, whether it is the company culture, the specific product, or other factors.
A Sample Answer: "I am absolutely amazed by the company's ABC product. This is a very good product which can make a great difference in parent's lives. The parents will feel safer about their kids if they have this product."
20) What is the difference between a short sale and a long sale cycle?
Difference between Short Sales Cycle and Long Sales Cycle
21) What qualities do you have which make you a good salesperson?
The interviewers ask this question to determine the qualities you think are most important for a salesperson. It would be best if you answered this question according to the requirement of the company.
A Sample Answer: "I am punctual self motivated, and love personal connections with prospects and customers. My punctuality makes me highly organized. My calendar is full of reminders to follow up with customers, and I always try to answer an email as soon as possible. I am also a tech savvy so, I always spend time with new products. It allows me to be able to answer questions of the customers fluently."
22) Can you share an example where a hopefully possible sales deal failed. What did you learn from that failure?
The interviewers ask this question to check if you have the guts to accept your failure. It also specifies that you can learn from your mistakes.
A Sample Answer: "In my previous company, there was a meeting with a possible customer but I was too focused on selling the attributes of the product rather than understanding the customer's requirements. I was new in the sales so, instead of taking a step back and letting the client explain his need, I kept pushing the product. At the end, I didn't get the deal, and then I realized that it doesn't matter how much perfect your product can be integrated in customer's business, it is important to respond to their questions and understand their requirements first."
23) Do you believe in a follow-up system with clients. If yes, why is it important?
Yes, I believe in a follow-up system with clients. It is always good to regularly check in with the clients after the sale via email or call. It is crucial to building a healthy relationship with clients. It is also a good feature of customer service.
24) Who was your favorite boss, and what made them your favorite?
You must be very alert while answering this tricky question. If you describe your best boss as very supportive and favorable, you may point out that you can only work with that level of support. This question is a trap by making you appear inflexible or not independent if your boss was too supportive.
A Sample Answer: "In my last company, my favorite boss and I had a great relationship and understanding. Before working there, I had a lot of experience and a proven track record. So, he left me alone to work as I wish. But later I realized, it is good to be a team player and work in team. After a while my boss felt that the team could learn from me so I agreed to lead them. That's how our work relationship evolved in a different and even better way."
25) Have you ever had a manager you did not like? Why?
This is another very tricky and revealing question. If you have to speak anything wrong about your boss's actions, say it factually and not emotionally. If your manager is disorganized, pessimistic, and indecisive, you can talk about the impact of their actions on you and the team. Please don't mention any personal digs such as he was annoying, lazy, impossible, a drunk, or flirtatious. These words are judgmental, less factual, and more emotional. So, it is not a good idea to use these words.
A Sample Answer: "In my previous company, my manager was very kind, but he could have been more effective at setting goals and managing up to the executive team. If the manager has issues and difficulties in setting expectations, the morale of the department is started to decline, and turnover would also be affected."
26) What are the things that excite you most/least about sales? / What are your most and most minor favorite parts of sales?
My favorite things about sales are meeting new people and finding new ways to communicate with them. My sales profile always allows me to engage with clients and offer them solutions for business problems they may be facing.
My least favorite part of sales is turning away a client due to stock problems even they are interested. Also, I'm not particularly eager to leave a potential client midway as I love closing the deal.
27) What are the essential core values every salesperson must have?
Following is a list of some essential qualities that a salesperson should possess.
28) What is the thing you most proud of?
The interviewer asks this question to know what you value most about your past experiences. While answering this question, you can speak about your accomplishments. Your answer should be brief and meaningful.
A Sample Answer: "When I thing about my career so far, I most value my 5 years at my previous company because it gave me a chance to start my career and made a solid successful sales foundation."
Sample Answer 2: "My best proud moment when I was able to help my brother to pay this college fees because our parents couldn't afford to pay for it. It completely changed his future for the better."
29) What are the top factors that you would attribute your success to in Sales?
"The most important factors for my success to in Sales are my perseverance, hard work, and ability to adapt to difficult situations. These are my biggest strengths. Along with this, the support of my team also helped me to improve my overall sales confidence and tactics."
30) What do you think our company can improve and how?
The interviewer asks this question to see how well you have researched the company. The best tip is to research the company to see what aspects can be expanded. If you analyze in detail, you can find the things that you can improve. You should be careful answering this question and ensure that your criticism is constructive.
A Sample Answer: "According to my study about this company, I can say that the social media presence of this organization can be improved. Social media operations play a crucial role in aligning sales and marketing efforts. If the organization has a marketing team that posts and interacts with customers and industry leaders, then it could be very beneficial for the company sales and emerging its brand value."
31) Suppose I am a prospective customer of this company so, what can you do for me?
The interviewer asks this question to see your attitude towards a prospective customer.
A Sample Answer: "As you know, we are one of the top companies in the financial world. We have a large variety of products and services that can provide the consumers their required financial security within a very reasonable price. We have got 2 premier national awards in the field of financial services."
32) What is the best advice you have ever received?
The hiring managers generally ask this question to see your definition of good advice and how you apply that advice to your life and work.
A Sample Answer: "Once my father said to me "There is always money for a great idea.". I think this is the greatest financial advice I have ever received. I have always keep this thing in my mind and made a lot of money selling advertising campaigns and concepts since then."
33) How can you contribute to this role?
The interviewers ask this question to see if you have any plan for this job profile. If you are an experienced candidate, the employer may expect some good ideas and policies for this job profile.
A Sample Answer: "I have 7+ years experience in sales and I think it is a great fit for this company. I am confident that I can bring a fresh and unique style to the company. In my previous company my job was analyzing data and I am good in it so I can help identify the stronger potential targets to close more deals. Also, I learn that you have been trying to branch out in the Medical industry and most of my clients in my previous company were from the medical field. So, I would definitely be a good asset for the company."
34) What do you do for fun? / How do you spend your free time?
It seems a silly simple question, but you should practice this one. You have to say what you love to do in your free time but choose to say a good and healthy hobby which brings something positive to your personality.
A Sample Answer: "You can say that. "I love running and exercising. I have competed in Iron Man races two times. I like to play the guitar in a band at local events in my free time. Along with this, I love adventure games such as scuba diving, river rafting, paragliding, etc."
35) How important is money for you?
This is generally an HR question. The HR managers ask this question to see how much money-oriented you are and what you can do for money.
A Sample Answer: "Everybody knows that money is an important factor and a crucial source to accomplish a lot of dreams. So, it is important for me as well. I have chosen sales because it is a good paying job and I enjoy the challenges and dynamic nature of the sales industry which constantly allows me to meet people and converse with them. I love networking with people, learn new things, and explore business opportunities which is very much feasible in sales."
36) Suppose sales are down, then what is the first thing you would do?
Every salesperson has to face this problem sometimes in his career, but they have to get out of it. While answering this question, you have to specify what you have done in the past.
A Sample Answer: "I have faced this problem in my previous company when sales are poorly down. I have stayed highly focused and organized and created a strategic outreach plan to focus on consistency and targeted activity."