Tips on How to Make Sales Incentives Work for Your Business

Tips on How to Make Sales Incentives Work for Your Business

Your company’s sales team is arguably the most exposed and hardworking group in your workforce, and that’s just one reason why they need to be given the RIGHT incentives REGULARLY. And so yes, not just any incentive will do.


What works for one company may not work for yours so it’s important that you take the time to know your sales team well and determine as well just what you’re capable of giving them.

Factors to Consider When Determining What Sales Incentives to Give

AGE – People’s likes and dislikes as well as their goals tend to differ as they age, and thus, it’s important to give sales incentives that will suit your sales team’s age range. If, however, they’re composed of different generations, then you need to choose something that will be ubiquitously desirable.

GENDER – Gender-specific sales incentives are tricky because you could be sued for discrimination, but they’re arguably more effective as well since you’re giving your sales team – man or woman – what they really desire. One way of solving the discrimination problem is by giving them the option to choose.

BUDGET – Naturally, giving away sales incentives shouldn’t bankrupt you. Evaluate your finances then determine just how much you’re able to spend. Having a budget will also challenge your mind and imagination to think out of the box and be resourceful.

Tips on How to Create Effective Programs for Sales Incentives

Sales Incentives Have Two Faces – And they’re called cash and non-cash incentives. It’s important that you offer both. Like it or not, people are generally easier to motivate if you’re offering both money and recognition in exchange of showing better job performance.

Motivation Comes from Within – Before creating any sales incentive program, you must also understand that no matter how hard you work on setting goals and determining prizes for employees, there won’t be any changes made if the employees themselves aren’t ready, willing, and able to change. Thus, be ready to be confronted once in a while with a few bad apples here and there. And when you do, don’t blame yourself: it’s those people – and not your program – that’s at fault.

Separate Sales Incentives for Short-Term and Long-Term Goals – You must prepare separate and appropriate sales incentives for your short-term and long-term goals. Cash and similar monetary incentives work better for short-term goals because they work like confectioneries by providing employees with a temporary boost of physical and mental energy. Stimulants for intrinsic motivation, on the other hand, will definitely work better for long-term goals because it gives your employees a reason to continue working the way you want them to.

3 S’s for Sales Incentives – When creating a sales incentive program, always make sure that it adheres to the 3 S’s rule: short, sweet, and simple. Anything complicated can discourage your sales workforce from bothering to change. And if you offer something sour instead of sweet, who’d want to work for it?

By  John Hester

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