Sales, revenue, and market share often operate in tandem. Every business exists to cater to the needs of the customers through the products and services that it has developed.
A sales associate acts as a bridge or a link between the company and its customers. They not only identify the prevailing market trends but also satisfy the prospective customers by answering their every question and solving their different queries.
It is commonly said that the difference between a successful and unsuccessful company is that the former has some of the best sales associates, who are energetic and committed. Hence, if you have the requisite skills, a quick wit, and a lot of energy then the world of sales is waiting for you!!
21 Best Interview Questions To Study
1. As A Sales Associate You Must be Aware Of The Various Stages Of The Consumer Buying Process. Can You Share Them With Me?
Sir, a consumer is a rational being and follows a complete process before indulging in the practical buying of products and services. This buying process can be studied and understood through the following five stages:
|Ranking||Name of the stage||Explanation|
|Stage I||Recognition of the consumer needs||This is a self-realization stage in which the consumers become aware of their various needs and requirements.|
|Stage II||Research of the methods||After identifying the consumer need in Stage I, it’s high time to search for the various products and services that will satisfy those needs. Usually, online inquiries, discussions with friends, and offline research are conducted at this stage.|
|Stage III||Evaluation and Assessment||The various relevant products identified in Stage II are compared and evaluated against each other in terms of pricing, quality, trust, brand name, etc.|
|Stage IV||The Real Buying||After conducting a thorough evaluation and assessment of the products identified in Stage II, a consumer closes the deal by making a purchase decision.|
|Stage V||Post-purchase Evaluation||After buying the products, the consumers engage in the post-purchase evaluation and analyze whether or not the product is returning the expected response.|
2. Are You Aware Of Banner Advertising? If Yes, Tell The Various Forms In Which It Is Practiced Today.
Sir, banner advertising refers to the display of the various products and services offered by the company in a rectangular form. These banners can be both online and offline with the former being placed as billboards at the various physical locations and the latter being placed on any popular online media property.
3. In A Bid To Achieve Maximum Potential and Sales, The Marketers Often Follow The Process Of Segmentation. Can You Share Some Of The Popular Market Segments and Also Explain Them In Brief?
Yes, sir, market segmentation is a vital process in which a company categorizes its potential customers into different segments and departments. Some of the popular market segments are:
|Name of the market segment||Explanation|
|Demographic segment||It is the most popular and simplest market segmentation process in which the customers are divided based on, gender, religion, education level, income levels, the status enjoyed in the general society, etc.|
|Geographic segment||This segment strives to divide the customers based on their location and geography. Country, district, region, city, postal code are some of the common characteristics of this segment.|
|Psychographic segment||Under this segment, the customers are divided based on their personalities and their different preferences. Values, customs, traditions, hobbies, and different personality traits are some of the common characteristics of this segment.|
|Behavioral segment||This segment divides the customers of the company based on actual product use. Some of the common characteristics that are followed in this type of segmentation are:|
1) Habits of the consumer – Purchasing, spending, and browsing
2) The ratings, reviews, and observations of the customers in respect of a particular products
3) The different purchase patterns exhibited by the customers
4. What Are The Different Monetary and Non-monetary Measures That Are Adopted By The Business Organizations To Motivate Their Sales Associates?
Sir, the motivation of the sales associate is necessary to enhance the revenue, brand awareness as well as market share. There is a slew of different monetary and non-monetary measures that are followed by the companies, such as:
- Gift Vouchers
- Food Coupons
- Incentives and allowances
- Business parties
- Paid family trips and vacations
5. Business Organizations Promote Sales Of Its Products and Services Through A Variety of Means. Can You Tell Some Of the Best Sales Promotional Techniques?
Sir, sales is an art and requires a lot of effort as well as practice to master it. Sales promotional techniques are usually adopted by the companies to augment the existing sales levels. Some common techniques are:
- Rebate: The goods are sold at a price lower than the list price upon materialization of an event
- Discount: The list price of the goods is reduced via a pre-determined fixed percentage
- Refund: The purchase price, in whole or in part, is refunded to the customers upon showing proof of purchase after a few months
- Coupons: A piece of paper is issued to the customers upon the purchase of the product. This coupon consists of a discount percentage that is reduced from the prevailing selling price.
6. We Have An Active E-Commerce Website Through Which We Give Effect To Almost 50% Of Our Sales. How Can You Segregate The Online Customers Of The Company?
Sir, with the popularity of the internet and the associated communication devices, purchasing through e-commerce websites is a common trend. I would segregate the online customers of the company based on the following trends:
- The worth or total value of the shopping carts created by the website customers
- The items that are trending and are ranking higher in the search results
- The specific advertisement campaigns that are most effective and are attracting the most
7. What Is A Consumer Life Cycle? Can You Name Its Different Stages?
Sir, achieving consumer satisfaction is pivotal in attaining long-term growth and success. The journey of a consumer starts from purchasing the product and ends with the retirement of the product purchased.
A consumer life cycle helps to devise appropriate policies and procedures, which helps to maximize customer satisfaction. This cycle is divided into five different stages, which are, Reach, Acquisition, Conversion, Retention, and Loyalty.
8. What Are Targeted Marketing Campaigns? How These Help The Sales Associates?
Sir, targeted marketing campaigns are based on research of the industry and customer preferences. Instead of making any random advertisement, a targeted campaign helps the business organizations to stimulate the real need and wants of the customers.
It helps the sales associates as we have to spend less time, energy, and persuasion in convincing the customers to buy our products or subscribe to our services. It also leads to a higher conversion rate as the customers are usually self-influenced through the advertisements.
9. We Often Extend Several Sales Targets To Our Sales Associates That Are Mandatory To Be Achieved. Will You Be Up For It?
Sir, it is common for business organizations to extend sales targets to their sales representatives that are usually monthly/ quarterly in nature. I feel I have the ability to work under tight deadlines and even achieve the most aggressive sales target through my dedication, perseverance, and persuasion. Hence, I will surely be up for it.
10. What Is Your Understanding Of The Concept Of Late Mover Advantage?
Sir, the late mover is an important marketing concept, in which the business organizations act as second fiddle and always follow the lead of the pioneering company. For example, Gillette which is often synonymous with the term “shaving blades” was not the first organization to launch the product. Rather, it simply followed the lead of two other business organizations, which got extinct long ago.
Hence, the strategy of “moving late” not only eliminates the risk of failure but also helps to better understand consumer responses and preferences. It also reduces the advertisement expenditures as the customer are generally already aware of the product.
11. What is The Marketing Strategy Of “Product Combination”? As A Sales Associate, How Effective Do You Feel It Is?
Sir, “product combination” is a sales-increasing strategy that exists among the various promotional techniques. In this technique, either a primary product or any ancillary product is offered to the consumers with an intent to attract and lure them. For example, the sale of a pressure cooker with a free recipe book. However, it must be noted that usually there is no discount or rebate offered while following this strategy.
It is quite effective from the sales point of view and is used by several sales associates as it helps them to convert the prospective leads very quickly.
12. How Can You As A Sales Associate Constantly Improve Your Performance and Enhance Customer Experiences?
Sir, upskilling and constantly upgrading oneself is an important part of the job. The relevance of upskilling increases much further in the challenging field of sales that changes pretty quickly. I constantly strive to improve my performance by:
- Analyzing the existing market trends
- Identifying the latest promotional techniques
- Constantly revising my sales pitches
Further, I always try to step into the shoes of my customers and try to prepare a virtual customer journey map. This helps me to deliver and enhance the customer experiences.
13. Companies Spend A Lot Of Time, Energy and Money On Designing as Well As Implementation Of The Advertising Campaigns. Don’t You Think Advertisements Are Enough To Persuade People Into Buying The Products and There Is No Need For The Sales Associates?
Sir, in my humble opinion, the advertisements can generate interest, and can even influence the customers to purchase the products. However, the work is still half done, and human intervention is necessary at this stage. At this juncture, a sales associate must capitalize upon the momentum generated through the advertisement and convert the lead into a customer. Hence, there is a greater need for sales associates as well.
14. The Role Of A Sales Associate Is Limited Till The Acquisition Of The Customers. Comment On This Statement.
Sir, I completely disagree with this statement. The retention of the customers is as important as their acquisition. A sales associate is not only limited till the first acquisition but is also responsible for retaining the customers. This is usually done by providing several after-sales services, such as:
- Providing guidance about how to avail of the warranty in case some issues arise
- Providing training about how the products must be used
- Helping out the consumers in case they want to get their products repaired at the authorized service centres
15. Being A Developed Business Organization We Will Certainly Be Assigning You Multiple Business Tasks That Need To Be Performed In A Single Day. How Will You Ensure A Timely Delivery Of All Of Them?
Sir, meeting the targets is essential for the growth and overall development of the company. Being a veteran sales associate, I have developed my prioritization technique, which helps me to rank the tasks based on their time consumption.
The tasks that are quite time-consuming are usually performed by me towards the beginning of my shift. Post this, the less time taking tasks are executed by me. This helps me to meet my targets and return productivity.
16. Describe A Time When You Failed To Achieve Your Quarterly/ Monthly Sales Targets.
Sir, sales is a challenging field. There are always some factors that can derail you from your targets. I remember one such instance when I got severely ill while working for my previous organization and missed to achieve my monthly targets.
17. What Do You Mean By “Misleading” Promotion Of Products and Services?
Sir, whenever a sales associate deviates from the actual use of the products and tries to share the benefits, which are imaginary and do not practically exist, he or she is engaging in a misleading promotion. It is unethical as well as illegal because by doing this a sales associate simply influences the customers in a wrong way.
18. Dealing With Customers and Achieving All Those Aggressive Sales Targets Is A Tough Nut To Crack. How Do You Manage Your Workplace Stress?
Sir, I completely agree with the relevance of this question. Indeed, the job of a sales associate is mentally draining as he or she has to be involved in several communications, paperwork, and persuasion throughout the working day. This generally leads to stress, which I usually manage through deep breathing and positive pep talk. Further, I also perform meditation daily.
19. Several Business Organizations Need The Services Of Sales Associates. But, Why You Chose Us?
Being a two-decades-old business organization, which has its operations spread in more than 18 countries, I feel getting associated with such a successful organization is like a dream come true. Further, the job profile suits me and I am completely satisfied with the pay on offer.
20. Sales Associates Often Get A Combination Of Fixed and Variable Compensation. Can I Know What Are Your Salary Expectations?
Sir, I have performed thorough market research of the industry. In my opinion, $10,000 per annum and variable compensation of 10% of the total monthly sales value would be ideal.
21. Do You Have Any Questions For Us?
Be it the position of a sales associate or an HR manager, every interview session is concluded with the help of this interview question. This question marks the end of your grilling, or you can even say interview and provides you with one last opportunity to impress your interviewer.
Hence, it is recommended that you always attempt this question and ask a few relevant counter questions from your interviewer. Enhance your understanding by reading the sample questions mentioned below:
- What are the various different slabs and sales commissions that are offered by the company to its sales associates?
- Can you please share the list of all the products that are manufactured by the company?
- What are the several advantages and disadvantages of working in this company as a sales associate?