Sales Specialist Salary
Sales Specialists in the United States pull down an average of $14.80 per hour. Final cash compensation to Sales Specialists varies from around $23K to approximately $92K; choice pay grades include potential for bonuses and profit sharing as high as $28K and $8K, respectively. Geographic location is the main element affecting pay for this group — the specific employer and years of experience are driving factors as well. Health benefits are not enjoyed by everyone in this line of work, and nearly one in five lack any coverage at all. Medical benefits are reported by a strong majority and dental coverage is claimed by more than half. Men make up a slight majority of Sales Specialists (53 percent) who responded to the survey. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. Respondents to the PayScale salary survey provided the data for this report.
Job Description for Sales Specialist
Sales specialists' main duty is to explain the specifications and features of a product or service to existing or potential customers, with the goal of making a sale. Sometimes, sales specialists also forecast a company's potential sales and ensure these targets are met. These professionals usually travel around a designated sales area (which includes actual and/or potential customers) and attempt to sell products and build relationships; many times, sales specialists are always responsible for a particular region designated by their employer.Read More...
Typical work hours for such a position vary, as traveling may mean an extremely busy week followed by a relatively easy one. However, the average sales specialist works 40-hour weeks and is on the road often to meet new potential clients. Sales specialists usually have to report with a head of their region's sales team, and answer to them when sales are low or a problem arises. They may also work with fellow sales specialists with specific clients or projects.
The education requirement for sales specialist positions can vary depending on the position and company. Most positions require at least a post-high school degree, usually a bachelor’s degree. Work experience is frequently preferred in sales or a customer-service role. This position also requires excellent interpersonal and communication skills, as well as the ability to track and analyze their sales data.
Sales Specialist Tasks
- Coordinate and lead sales associates.
- Inform and assist customers regarding technical and specialized merchandise.
- Take the lead in resolving customer complaints and ensure customer satisfactions.
Common Career Paths for Sales Specialist
Though not the most common occurrence, Sales Specialists sometimes become Regional Sales Managers, where the average income is $84K per year. Many Sales Specialists go on to become Retail Department Managers or Retail Sales Specialists despite the fact that median compensation in those roles is reportedly $5K lower and $8K lower, respectively.
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Popular Employer Salaries for Sales Specialist
Leading companies who hire large numbers of Sales Specialists include Lowe's Home Improvement Inc., Lowe's Companies, Inc, The Home Depot Inc., Victoria's Secret, and Macy's, Inc. The biggest paychecks can be found at Verizon Wireless — the median salary there is $40K. Those in search of high salaries should also consider Bank of America Corp. (BOFA), Apple Computer, Inc, and Lowe's Home Improvement Inc., top-paying firms where Sales Specialists rake in a solid $37K, $36K, or $33K, respectively.
With a reported median salary of only $19K, JCPenney easily takes the cake for lowest-paying firm in town; earnings are less than half of the top paying company's rate. Office Max, Inc., Macy's, Inc., and The Home Depot Inc. are a few other employers known for handing out relatively lightweight salaries ($22K, $23K, and $25K respectively).
Popular Skills for Sales Specialist
Survey takers working as Sales Specialists report using a large range of professional skills. Most notably, facility with Account Management, Strategic Sales, and Account Sales are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 131 percent, 90 percent, and 77 percent, respectively. Those listing Retail as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. Customer Service and Sales also typically command lower compensation. Most people familiar with Customer Service also know Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Technical Sales.
Pay by Experience Level for Sales Specialist
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
The median compensation for relatively untried workers is $33K; in the five-to-10 year group, it's higher at around $37K. Sales Specialists with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $45K. Survey participants with more than two decades under their belts actually report earning less than people with less experience; the former take home only $44K on average.
Pay Difference by Location
Denver offers some of the highest pay in the country for Sales Specialists, 120 percent above the national average. Sales Specialists can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Rochester (+99 percent), Seattle (+97 percent), San Diego (+95 percent), and New York (+83 percent). In Orlando, salaries are 13 percent below the national average and represent the lowest-paying market.
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