When considering a job in software sales, one of the first questions people ask is, how much can I actually make? We all know the income from a sales job of any kind depends at least in part on commission. That fact alone is scary to a lot of people, because it represents uncertainty. But it’s only worth losing sleep over if you’re trying to sell something people don’t want.
The good news for people looking for software sales jobs is that quality solutions are more in-demand than ever. 38% of companies surveyed by BetterCloud in 2017 were running entirely on Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) products, and those products were sold to them by someone. The same survey also found businesses were using 33% more apps on average every year. This shows that not only do companies need and want software, they are always looking for the next tool to help them work better.
All this is to say software sales is one of the entry-level careers with the biggest opportunity to grow salary quickly. Many people don’t know that good sales jobs, including software sales jobs, are usually accompanied by a base salary, too.
If you’re wondering what income will be guaranteed from a software and technology sales job and what role your commission will play here’s some insight into recent trends and findings, plus the software sales job outlook.
Trend 1: Salaries are (Slowly) Going Up on Average
It’s no big secret that wage stagnation is a general problem around the world. According to PEW Research Center, who analyzed almost fifty years of data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, our wages have gone up on paper. But thanks to inflation, our purchasing power hasn’t actually increased much. It might sound like a big difference between making $4 an hour in 1973 and $23 an hour today—but the two amounts actually have exactly the same value in the dollars of the day.
On a happier note, 2018 was the first time in four years that US companies allocated more than 3% of their budget to increasing salaries. According to the Society for Human Resource Management, companies aren’t looking to just issue raises to everyone, though. They predict that pay increases are most likely to go to the top performers and those with in-demand skills.
This is great news for those considering a career transition to software sales rep. The five most in-demand soft skills in the job market in 2019 are creativity, persuasion, collaboration, adaptability, and time management. It just so happens, those are also vital for the best software sales jobs, meaning now is a better time than ever to stand out and use those skills to earn dollar bills.
Question: So What Does a Software Sales Salary Actually Look Like?
We mentioned earlier how most software sales jobs will include a base salary. This salary, like any other, will be determined by factors like your experience and the salary averages where you live. From there, your pay will fluctuate further depending on commission and bonuses. According to Payscale, here’s a breakdown of the extremes of software sales salary ranges, and where the middle numbers end up. This will help you set expectations for a base entry level software sales salary, plus how to expect salary growth over time:
- Software Sales Salary Base Range: $35,542-$93,580
- Median base software sales salary: $51,824
- Software sales commission range: $4,615-$59,733
- Median software sales commission: $32,174
- Software sales average bonuses: $1,933-$35,885 (Median bonus: $18,909)
- Total average software sales jobs salary: $35,838-$107,952
- Median pay: $71,895
Now remember, a lot of salaries for software sales jobs NYC or a software sales salary San Francisco might be higher than these averages. Software sales salaries in other cities may be lower, but the good news is, your cost of living is likely a lot lower, too.
Trend 2: Software Demand is Escalating
If you’re starting to think that a software sales salary would be something you could work with, it’s a good idea to learn about today’s software trends. In 2018, 80% of users preferred SaaS and cloud apps for communication and organization, compared to 51% in 2015. However, companies want their new software tools to integrate seamlessly with their existing processes, not force a complete overhaul.
Another trend revealed by the 2018 SaaS Industry Market Report is that companies want to buy software for data analysis. This is a demand that is being met more and more by software like artificial intelligence.
If you find software sales jobs at a company that is in tune with these trends, you have more certainty that you’ll be selling a product that businesses actually want. Which in turn means a higher commission, more take home pay, and more satisfaction for everyone.
Trend 3: Software Companies Want to Attract and Keep Software Sales Talent
At the end of February 2019, there were 7.1 million open jobs in the United States, and only 5.6 million people looking for work. For the first time in over twenty years, job-seekers have the advantage. For roles like software sales jobs, these trends mean it’s easier than ever to break into this career field. It’s also easier to negotiate an entry level software sales salary that will keep you comfortable while you grow.
However, to find and keep a job you love, it’s important to look beyond salary to find a good culture fit at the best sales companies to work for. No one wants to go out and try to sell a product if they question its value. It’s also hard to feel motivated if the team you work with doesn’t appreciate your efforts. “Great sales roles are fun,” says David DeRam of Greenlight Guru. “People want to work for a fantastic organization. They want to be sure everyone is pulling together.”
The fact that software companies need top sales talent to promote their products makes this a great time to enter this career field. Your skills will be highly valued by the right team. It’s also a time when the market for these products is booming and companies want to hear about software that can meet their needs. The result ends up being that your software sales salary is positioned to be as big as you make it.
Start Growing Your Software Sales Salary
If you’re trying to figure out how to break into software sales, Reddit is only maybe going to cut it. You can also start by joining a talent network. Companies and job seekers alike create profiles to give each other insight into what software sales job requirements are, and what software businesses are looking for in sales representatives. As software sales becomes a hotter market than ever, the salaries of talented individuals will only grow. We wish you the best of luck in grabbing your piece of the pie.