Sales training

Understand the benefits of sales training and explore some of the top sales training programs to help your reps learn new skills and use them to bag more opportunities.

Table of Contents

What is sales training?

Sales training is the process by which a company
trains the front-line commercial staff to drive
engagement, effectiveness and ongoing development.
Sales training definition by Gartner

Sales training develops essential selling skills that sales reps need to close deals and attain their quotas. These skills include prospecting, social selling, negotiations, proposal writing and objection handling.

Sales training programs can be:

  • Onsite (in-person), instructor-led sales training course or workshop
  • Online sales training (either instructor-led or self-paced courses and webinars)
  • Blended learning program (that merges aspects of in-person and virtual sales training)

Reinforce sales training with
real-time sales coaching
to win more deals

Mastering essential selling skills such as prospecting, cold calling and objection handling is key to becoming a better sales rep.

A real-time sales coaching platform like Wingman ensures that salespeople keep getting better and winning more.

Why is sales training important?

Sales training helps your sales reps improve their performance by boosting their win rates and closing more deals. As a result, your team’s sales success leads to more revenues and profitability.

According to this survey, effective sales training programs can help your team members achieve a 54% win rate, instead of a 44% win rate in the case of bad or no training programs.

A solid sales training program equips your reps to:

  • Understand your ideal customers and their pain points
  • Spot the right sales opportunities and know how to approach them
  • Establish rapport and gain the trust of your prospects
  • Know when prospects are sales-ready and move them further along the sales pipeline
  • Understand how to differentiate your solutions from the competition and align them with your prospect’s needs
  • Develop essential selling skills such as negotiations, handling objections or dealing with high-level decision-makers

What are the various types of sales training?

Inside sales training:

This involves using cold calling techniques (phone, email or social media platforms like LinkedIn) to reach out to your prospects and ask for referrals from existing customers. So, inside sales training helps salespeople spot prospects, get referrals and use cold calling effectively.

Field sales training:

Unlike inside sales techniques that use virtual channels, field sales involves meeting prospects in person either at their offices or during conferences or trade shows.

Product sales training:

These sales training programs help you learn how to communicate the features or benefits of products and align these with the prospect’s pain points. These programs also help salespeople know how to pitch their products to stand out from the competition.

Service sales training:

Services rely heavily on consulting, customer service and retention. So, service sales training programs are all about consultative selling, where sales reps act as advisors and sell a solution. These programs focus on teaching how to build customer relationships, foster loyalty and increase the lifetime value of each customer.

Sales management training:

These sales training programs are for sales managers or leaders and teach them how to build and coach high-performance sales teams  and be more effective with sales coaching. These training programs also help sales managers employ powerful sales strategies and build better sales processes.

Automation training:

These are sales training workshops for learning how to use CRMs or marketing automation tools to build sales workflows and centralized dashboards, log data and automate reports to track sales performance metrics.

What should sales training include?

Sales training helps sales reps understand and anticipate their customer's needs and interact more effectively.

While each sales training program has its merits, here are some elements that a comprehensive sales training program built for the digital age should include:

  • The fundamentals of sales conversations
  • Essential selling skills such as sales prospecting, cold calling, social selling, negotiations, follow-ups, account management and onboarding new customers
  • Knowledge of your industry, market, competition and target audience
  • Case studies from your industry and sales organization
  • An understanding of your sales process and sales cycle
  • A sales methodology or technique (SPIN selling, Solution selling, MEDDIC or Challenger selling) depending on your industry, target audience, sales strategy and sales process
  • Ample exercises or activities to role-play scenarios and implement everything that your salespeople learn
  • Sales management training for your sales leaders and managers to become better sales coaches and drive sales performance of their sales teams

Reinforce sales training with
real-time sales coaching
to win more deals

Mastering essential selling skills such as prospecting, cold calling and objection handling is key to becoming a better sales rep.

A real-time sales coaching platform like Wingman ensures that salespeople keep getting better and winning more.

Who offers the top sales training programs?

Let’s look at some of the top sales training programs and the training companies offering these programs:

Vendor
Program
What participants will learn
Format
Duration
Bill Tracy International
21st Century Sales Training
Essential sales skills such as prospecting, building rapport and handling objections
Online
12 weeks
Challenger Inc
The Challenger Approach
How to use the Challenger approach to sell in complex B2B environments
Instructor-led, e-learning and hybrid courses
Varies
Huthwaite International
The Challenger Approach
How to use the SPIN Selling approach for better customer conversations
Onsite (internationally available) and virtual sales training classrooms
The virtual program has four 3-hour sessions
Jill Konrath
Accelerate Your Sales
How to use the SNAP selling approach for sales prospecting
Conference breakout sessions, followed by virtual seminars and video lessons
Either half a day or a full day
Jill Konrath
Accelerate Your Sales
How to use the SNAP selling approach for sales prospecting
Conference breakout sessions, followed by virtual seminars and video lessons
Either half a day or a full day
Miller Heiman Group
Strategic Selling with Perspective
How to use the SNAP selling approach for sales prospecting
Conference breakout sessions, followed by virtual seminars and video lessons
Either half a day or a full day
Miller Heiman Group
Strategic Selling with Perspective
How to close more deals in complex sales environments with multiple decision-makers
On-site, instructor-led seminars
Two days
RAIN Group
RAIN Selling: Foundations of Consultative Selling
How to ace consultative selling by having better customer-facing conversations
Onsite and virtual sales training programs led by an instructor, followed by assessments and coaching sessions

You can customize the course as per your requirements.
It varies, depending on the customizations you choose
Richardson Sales Performance
Sprint Selling
How to cope with changing customer needs by selling in sprints
Onsite and virtual instructor-led sales training programs
4-hour sessions
Sales MEDDIC Group
MEDDIC and MEDDPICC workshops
How to use the MEDDIC or MEDDPICC approaches to qualify better and close high-value deals.
In-person or virtual workshops
A 4-hour in-person session or 2-3 remote sessions
Sandler Training
Sandler Sales Foundations
How to use the Sandler Selling System to hone your sales conversation skills
At a Sandler training center (international)
Varies
The Brooks Group
IMPACT Selling
How to use the IMPACT selling consultative approach to improve your sales process
In-person and online sales training programs led by an instructor
Six 2-hour sessions of virtual sales training
The Harris Consulting Group
N.E.A.T Selling
Essential sales skills training using the N.E.A.T selling method to improve prospecting, objection handling or discovering customer pain points
Onsite or via Zoom
1-2 days of onsite training or five weeks of training on Zoom
Tony Hughes
B2B selling workshops and courses
Workshops for B2B sales skills development by honing your sales team's social selling, pipeline building, negotiations and relationship selling techniques
In-person sessions with Tony Hughes
1-2 day workshops

What should you look for in a sales training program?

While every sales training program promises several things, it’s crucial to choose one that aligns the most with your requirements. So, you should go through the following checklist before deciding:

  • What do your sales process and ideal customer profile look like?
  • What essential sales skills does your sales force lack? Take into account your industry, market trends, sales process and ideal customer profile.
  • What does your sales tech stack look like?
  • What is your budget for sales training? Are you willing to invest in methods to reinforce the sales training?
  • What learning format and duration are ideal for your sales organization?
  • How will you assess the improvements in sales performance?

Are sales training programs enough?

An average sales training program can cost anywhere from $200 to $2000 per sales rep. Despite the substantial investment, sales professionals forget 80% of their training within three months.

That’s because they complicate the selling process and don’t actively reinforce the new skills taught during the training program. Moreover, each organization’s sales process is unique and each sales rep has a different requirement to be successful.

A better approach is to invest in sales coaching and help sales professionals get:

  • Granular insights on their customer-facing conversations with real-time tracking of their performance metrics
  • The best pitches that work for your sales organization and industry
  • Real-time sales coaching during each sales call to handle objections, negotiate better and pitch the right features or benefits at the right moment
In today’s environment of instantaneous expectations of success, where people hand over their money in nanoseconds, you better be knowing every second of what your sales team is doing. And there’s only one way to do it — using a sales coaching tool like Wingman. The other stuff (like sales training) is a waste of time.

Pauline O’Malley, B2B Business Development Strategist

What’s next?

Even the best sales training programs are no match for real-time sales coaching and performance analysis. That’s where Wingman can help.

Wingman totally lives the sales training motto of:  listen to your own calls, study your managers, learn from the past and apply it to the future.
David S, Administrator at Appreciation Financial

Using Wingman, you can coach your sales reps without actually participating in calls, track their performance at a glance and provide feedback tailored to each rep’s needs.
Interested in learning more?