A Guide to Salesman Resume Skills: Definition and Examples

Updated 15 March 2023

A salesperson represents a brand and helps sell products and services. They typically manage relationships with prospects and customers, encouraging prospects to act and prompting existing customers to make repeat purchases. Exploring the skills of a salesperson can help you identify some soft and technical skills worth developing to increase your expertise as a salesperson. In this article, we define salesperson resume skills, provide some examples, outline how to improve them, discuss how to highlight them in the workplace and detail how to outline them during the recruitment process.

What are a salesperson's resume skills?

A salesperson's resume skills are a combination of soft and technical abilities that support you while conducting sales duties. Your sales soft skills typically refer to self-management and interpersonal capabilities, such as communication, time management, adaptability, diligence and consistency. These soft skills often support your technical capabilities. For example, your adaptability can allow you to adjust to new sales software and utilise it to its full potential. Some technical sales skills might include relationship management, negotiations, sales software and customer service. Hiring managers usually favour you as a candidate with extensive skills, as they reflect your interpersonal and sales capabilities.

Related: The Best Sales Resume Skills to Include on Your Application

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Examples of a salesperson's skills

Below, you can find some examples of a salesperson's skills:


Communication outlines your ability to absorb information and discuss topics with clarity through both written and verbal channels. For a sales position, excellent communication enables you to support the prospecting and discovery phases of a sale. If you have strong communication skills, you can absorb information effectively, allowing you to remember important details about customers and prospects. This can enhance the discovery process, as an in-depth understanding of prospects can help you tailor unique sales pitches that target specific pain points.

Related: Sales Communication Skills (With Examples and Step Guide)


Adaptability refers to your capacity to adapt to changes in your environment. In a sales setting, a change in environment may be a shift in consumer trends, such as a dramatic increase in the popularity of a unique product. Your adaptability skills can help you adjust your sales strategies, pitches and communication methods to suit the changing environment.

Related: How to Adapt to Change in the Workplace (With Tips)

Emotional intelligence

Emotional intelligence refers to how easily you can identify other people's emotions. For example, if you're emotionally intelligent, you might notice when a prospect loses interest or becomes frustrated with your persistence. Your emotional intelligence, combined with your communication and adaptability, can allow you to adjust your communication style and sales strategy to maintain the prospect's engagement and attention.

Related: What Are Empathic Skills? (With Benefits and Steps)

Sales software

Many sales departments incorporate sales software that acts as a central management system where you can manage, coordinate and monitor sales operations. For example, sales software usually provides a dashboard of performance information, allowing you to immediately identify processes that require alterations and improvements. Your technical skills in using sales software can enhance your productivity and efficiency in many sales positions, from entry-level to senior managerial roles.

Related: What Are Sales Tools? (Including Tips for Choosing One)

How to improve a salesperson's skills

Below, you can explore a helpful guide on how to improve a salesperson's skills:

1. Complete online certifications

You can typically improve your sales skills through online certifications and short courses. These educational programs are relatively short, with some lasting between several hours and several weeks. Online certifications can help you prioritise a skill to improve, as many online courses may specialise in a specific skill and industry. For example, you might find an online course specialising in phone communication, improving your ability to communicate with clients and prospect over the phone. Compared to university degrees, online certificates are usually shorter and less expensive, but this can depend on the training provider and course.

Related: Why Certificates Can Get You a Job Even Without a Degree

2. Attend skill workshops

Skill workshops can be an alternative to online certification regarding the complexity and duration of learning material. A skill workshop is typically an on-premise course where you develop your skills alongside fellow students. Interactions with other students can be beneficial for developing sales skills, as many of the skills are interpersonal, such as communication and negotiation. The physical activity of practising your interpersonal skills can provide you with some practical experience.

3. Gain a qualification

A qualification, such as a technical certificate or university degree, can help you develop sales skills. Technical certifications can take up to two years to complete but often provide more substantial learning material and opportunities than an online certificate or skill workshop. A university degree can take between three and six years to complete and usually provides more in-depth learning material.

Related: Skills to Learn at University (And How to Improve Them)

4. Develop sales experience

Arguably, the most direct method for developing sales skills is to gain sales experience. If you have minimal experience, you might consider an entry-level sales position where you can gain practical experience in interacting with prospects and customers. Other roles, such as a retail assistant or customer service representative can provide valuable transferable skills, such as communication and time management.

Related: The Types of Careers In Sales (With Average Salaries)

Salesperson skills in the workplace

Below, you can review several tips on how to highlight your salesperson skills in the workplace:

  • Foster strong relationships. As a salesperson, your ability to foster strong relationships with clients and prospects can help you close more deals and enhance sales performance. If you foster strong client relationships, it can highlight your interpersonal skills.

  • Close deals. Converting prospects into customers can be a direct method for showing supervisors and colleagues you have the technical capabilities to sell products and services. If you close deals regularly, you can showcase your adaptability, negotiation and customer service skills.

  • Improve sales strategies. Depending on the sales position, you might have responsibilities for identifying inefficiencies in sales strategies. Improving sales strategies can help you show colleagues and supervisors you have excellent strategic thinking, problem-solving and technical sales skills.

  • Automate sales responsibilities. The sales process can include a variety of procedures and steps that have the potential for automation. Automating various sales duties can highlight your sales software proficiency.

Related: What Makes a Good Sales Person and What Do They Do?

How to highlight salesperson skills

When applying for a sales position, you may have varying opportunities to showcase your sales skills on your resume, cover letter and in your employment interview. Each recruitment document and phase typically presents unique opportunities for discussing or listing your soft and technical sales skills. Hiring managers often assess your skills, as they can reflect on your technical competence and interpersonal capabilities. Below, you can explore several methods for including skills on your resume, cover letter and in your job interview:

1. Salesperson skills for a resume

Your resume is a summary of your employment attributes and credentials, such as your qualifications, work experience, achievements and skills. Compared to your cover letter, you usually don't have extensive space for discussing your skills in detail, so you can list them in your skills section. If your skills are your primary strength as a salesperson, you might adopt a resume style that allows you to prioritise your skills. In a skills resume, you can list your skills and discuss how and when you used them throughout your professional career.

Related: Writing an Effective Salesperson Resume (With Examples)

2. Salesperson skills for a cover letter

Your cover letter is usually a paragraph-style document containing a letter heading and three body paragraphs. Throughout your cover letter, you can discuss some of your sales skills, such as your communication, computer proficiency, time management and interpersonal capabilities. Because a cover letter has paragraph-style content, you can discuss your skills in extensive detail. For example, rather than listing your communication skills, you can discuss how your communication skills helped you increase lead conversion rates and close more deals. This provides practical evidence of your soft and technical skills, helping you convince the hiring manager of your sales competence.

3. Salesperson skills for an interview

Depending on the questions you receive during an employment interview, you may have many opportunities for discussing your skills. The interviewer may ask direct and indirect questions about your skills. For example, the interviewer may ask, 'What are your primary skills as a salesperson?' This is a direct question where you can discuss your sales skills. The interviewer might also ask some indirect questions, such as 'What is a sales challenge you've overcome?' This question doesn't specifically target your skills but provides an opportunity to discuss your skills and explain how they helped you overcome a specific challenge.

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