Ideas for Sales Incentives

28 Nov, 2022

Jesus Malo

Learn about motivating a sales team through a sales incentive program.

A great sales incentive program will not only help your team stay motivated to hit quota but also improve employee morale, reduce turnover, and even improve your client relationships. The key is to choose the right compensation structure and base your sales incentives on the behavior you’re trying to reinforce. 

What is a sales incentive?

A sales incentive is a reward you offer your sales team in exchange for hitting their numbers or reaching a particular goal. Incentives can be monetary or non-monetary, or some combination of the two. Financial compensation is considered standard for most sales jobs, but research suggests that monetary incentives aren’t enough to satisfy employees. 

If you want to create sustainable behavior change in your reps, that means getting creative with your sales incentives. Think outside the box. The ideas below can help you get started, but you should customize incentives based on what your reps find most motivating for the best results.

Ideas for Sales Incentives

Learn about your sales team

The best sales incentive is different for every team–and every individual on that team. Take the time to get to know your reps, the goals they’re working towards (both personally and professionally), and what motivates them. 

Everyone is motivated by different factors, which means you may need to provide a variety of incentives. For example, some reps thrive on public recognition and praise, while others will appreciate more flexibility in their working hours.

One option is to leave the incentive choice up to your team by asking them in advance what type of incentives they prefer or by letting them choose their reward after hitting the goal. Your reps will appreciate input and may come up with ideas you wouldn’t have thought of on your own.

Sales incentive ideas

Use these creative incentives as a jumping-off point for crafting your unique rewards.

Give away tickets, trips, or outings

If you’re leaning toward non-monetary incentives, consider rewarding your sales team with an unforgettable experience. You can gift top-performing reps with movie or concert tickets, a weekend away, or even a paid vacation. Bonus points if you can get tickets for your rep’s favorite artist or sports team!

Award physical prizes

If you’ve gotten to know your team well, you should have a good idea of their hobbies outside of work. See if you can find a physical gift each rep would enjoy. For example, if you have a gourmet coffee lover on your team, you could buy them a new espresso machine. Thoughtful gifts like these show that you’re truly listening to your reps.

Award professional development incentives

For some career-driven individuals, the best incentive is a chance to improve their skills. Reward your reps with conference tickets, advanced selling seminars, or advancement opportunities at work. These are all perfect examples of incentives that benefit both the organization and the individual. 

Run sales contests

Nothing motivates salespeople more than a little friendly competition. Instead of pitting your reps against one another, try setting a sales goal for the entire team or awarding a variety of titles beyond the typical “salesperson of the month.”

HubSpot recommends getting creative with your contests. Reward the rep with the best retention rate, host a pitch competition, or mine your customer reviews to see which reps receive the most positive feedback.

Give your reps some recognition

According to the Huffington Post, 80% of employees say they’re more motivated when their manager shows appreciation for their work. Make sure to acknowledge when your reps hit their sales goals. Celebrate them in the team Slack channel, have the CEO send a personal note, and congratulate them during your next one-on-one meeting.

How to develop incentive plans for sales

As you can see from the examples above, there are lots of incentive options beyond a cash bonus. The best sales incentives are creative, thoughtful, and tailored to your team. Once you get to know your reps on a deeper level, you’ll be able to create incentives that truly motivate them long-term.

Make sure to tie each incentive to a specific behavior you’re trying to reinforce. Think beyond hitting quota and consider customer relationships, retention rates, and average deal size. For more on designing an effective compensation plan, check out this blog post.

Work with Predictable Revenue to optimize your sales process

If you need help designing incentives, reach out here to book a free discovery call. Our sales development experts can help you create a compensation plan that boosts your team’s motivation and inspires great performance month after month.

Although there are unique challenges that come with working online, there are also a lot of great benefits. This ebook will show you how to make the most of leading a remote team, from the hiring and onboarding process to virtual coaching tips, team building, and more.

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