25 Must-Know Vocabulary Words for Success in Sales

So how does one conduct business in sales? Well, you talk, a lot.

Yes, we all should listen more. That’s as given. But at some point, we are going to need to say something!

Whether you’re introducing yourself, meeting with a potential client, business partner, or making a call, communication is an essential aspect of working in sales.

There are many different (and important) elements of communication. But what will be remembered from your conversation? The message. The meat of the dialogue. Just think about what the goal of the conversation is, and communicate that clearly!

Expert sales reps and professional communicators understand that if you want to be successful in sales you need to know the right words and know when to use them. Knowing what to say, how to say it, and when to say it will set you apart from potential competition.

It takes a lot of skill and practice to become an “expert communicator” in sales, but an easy way to start is to nail down common vocabulary used in the industry. This will help you sound prepared, professional, and give you some credibility to your name. Every time you communicate with potential clients, customers, or coworkers, it is an opportunity to display your expertise, and potentially earn business, and make an impressive and lasting impact.

So how can you work on your sales vocabulary?

First things first, make sure you know some keywords and phrases. If you don’t know many yet, this is a good place to get started. Write these keywords down on flashcards, practice them, and know when to use them. This will be a gamechanger for your business and give you a bit of a confidence boost when talking to others.

Top 25 must-know vocabulary words for success in the sales industry:

  1. ABC: Always Be Closing.
  2. B2B: Business to business sale; a commercial transaction between two businesses, purchasing and selling merchandise, or supplying goods to another for production
  3. B2C: Business to consumer sale; business selling goods and services to the consumer.
  4. Buyer Behavior: The ways a consumer identifies, considers, and chooses products and services. This is often influenced by the consumer’s needs, desires, and aspirations.
  5. Buying Criteria: All the information a consumer needs to make a buying decision.
  6. Buyer Persona: A semi-fictional representation based on market research and data about your existing customers.
  7. Client: Somebody who buys goods or pays for services. Companies and other organizations may also be clients. A client may have an arrangement or relationship with the supplier.
  8. Cold Calling: A call soliciting business made directly to a potential customer without having any prior contact or relationship.
  9. Commission: The payment a salesperson makes when they make a sale.
  10. Conversion Rate: The percentage of visitors or leads that complete a desired action, such as a sale.
  11. Customer: a person or company that receives, buys, or consumes goods or services. The customer has the power to choose between different goods and suppliers. For example, let’s say that you go to the grocery store to buy some apples. When you buy them, you will be a customer of that grocery store. The grocery store, however, is a client of a nearby apple farm, they have a business arrangement so the store could sell apples to you!
  12. Elevator Pitch: A brief and persuasive speech used to spark interest and/or clarify what you do, how you do it, or how your product or service helps others.
  13. Feature / Function: A feature is a tool the product possesses. The function is what can be accomplished utilizing the feature. For example, the key fob for your car is a feature that allows the function of your door to be opened with the touch of a button.
  14. Forecasting: Estimating future sales performance for a forecast period based on historical data. This data helps high-level employees set standards for expenses, profit, and growth.
  15. 15. Ideal Client Profile (IDP): A representation of your perfect-fit clients based on data and research, not “wish list” assumptions.
  16. Pain Point: Specific problems faced by current or prospective customers in the marketplace. Pain Points include any problems the customer may experience along their journey.
  17. Pipeline: The step-by-step process sales reps go through to convert a prospect into a customer.
  18. Positioning Statement: Statements and questions that sales reps use when opening a sales call to engage the prospect in conversation about their pain points.
  19. Prospect: A potential client or customer.
  20. Quote/Quotation: An official statement setting out the estimated cost for a particular service or product. If the buyer accepts the offered quote this represents an agreement to buy the product.
  21. Quota: A sales goal; a set amount of selling a sales rep is expected to meet over a certain time period.
  22. Sales Pitch: A speech that is given in order to persuade someone to buy something.
  23. Social Selling: When sales reps use social media to interact directly with their prospects.
  24. Supplier: A person or company that provides goods or services.
  25. Up-Sell / Cross-Sell: Upsell is when a sales rep sells a higher-end version of a product.  Cross-Sell is when you sell something that is complementary to a product. Example:  The “Deluxe” model blow dryer over the regular model is an upsell. Selling a comb or brush to accompany the blow dryer would be the cross-sell.

… And just one more for luck!

Value Proposition: A benefit of a product or company intended to make it more attractive to potential customers and differentiates it from its competitors.

These are just a few of the words that will be helpful to know as you become more experienced in the sales industry. As you get more familiar with common sales terms and learn how to apply them, you will be better equipped to manage your own sales and your organization’s sales strategies.

If you are looking for specific, specialized, and professional help to maximize your career in sales, contact John Costigan.

Share this post