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Updated: 28 Sep 2020

10 Best Sales Training Courses

Summary

We tasked eight sales training experts with agreeing on this updated list of the best sales training courses for 2020 and 2021. The list covers both classroom and online learning. We've conducted the time-consuming work of gathering the most important information from each organization (for those who chose to share), to make your choice easier and faster.

We tasked eight sales training experts with agreeing on this updated list of the best sales training courses for 2020 and 2021. The list covers both classroom and online learning. These courses are run by corporate sales trainers rather than academic institutions.

Effective sales training has a direct correlation to business results. According to McKinsey, stronger sales training relates to stronger performance across key skill areas. Undertaking sales training often results in higher opportunity win rates, claiming maximum value through pricing and volume, and an increase in the ability to fill pipelines and grow accounts.

Definition

Sales training is the process of developing the skills and tools of your sales force to create more and better sales opportunities and close more higher profit deals.

1. Sandler Training – Certified Sales Associate

The Sandler Selling System focuses on training reps to uncover client pain points. Follow-up sales reinforcement training is also offered by this training provider. The program aims to empower professionals to change behaviors, develop new attitudes, and improve sales techniques.

Sandler trainers encourage participants to question belief systems and long-held assumptions. The program aims to empower learners to replace nonproductive habits and to build sustainable action plans, leading to consistent sales mastery.

Key Lessons and Value

  • Learn how to determine value for individual clients.
  • Understand client pain points with a desire to resolve problems.
  • Practice skills to increase win rates, revenue, and margins.
  • Develop a common sales approach and process for the organization.

Certification: Certified Sales Associate (CSA)

Delivery Method: Classroom, online instructor-led synchronous, and online asynchronous self-paced learning  

Duration: Two days 

Format: Lectures, role-playing, and instructors can accompany your reps in the field 

Location: Onsite and at the Sandler Corporate Training department in Baltimore

Rating: 4.6 out of 5 

Customization Level: Medium

Practical Exercises: Role-playing   

Graduates: Aberdeen Group Research, LinkedIn, British Airways, Indeed, New York Life, Evernote.

2. Negotiation Experts – Sales Negotiation Training

The Negotiation Experts offer a highly experiential sales negotiation course to sharpen your sales force’s skills and avoid losing deals from commoditization. The course guides sales reps to exceed targets, including multiple indirect ways to control the sales cycle and tools to build and claim value, while strengthening relationships and credibility.

The course goes beyond event training by providing post-graduation reinforcement. A key tool used in the course for skill development is their online negotiation sim.

Key Lessons and Value

  • Create value by leveraging customer needs.
  • Learn how to shorten the sales cycle by closing larger deals faster.
  • Know how to claim more value and discount less.
  • Master persuasion and influence to win more “yeses.”
  • Practice handling objectives and keeping control of meetings.

Certification: Certificate of completion, plus an optional LinkedIn certificate

Delivery Method: Classroom and synchronous remote online training

Duration: Three days for classroom, or six 4-hour online remote delivery sessions

Format: Customized or multi-industry library of buyer-seller role-playing with expert feedback, video content, lectures, group exercises & discussions, polling, pre-diagnostic & post-assessment reports, panoramic or split-screen videotaping for classroom delivery

Fee: From $2,375 for classroom and $2,210 for online (before an early bird discount)

Location: Onsite classroom delivery in over 35 countries, online remote delivery for Americas, EMEA & APAC. Open enrolment classroom programs in American cities, and online for the Americas time zone. Public classroom training in major cities across the US

Rating: 4.7 out of 5 

Customization Level: High 

Maximum Class Size: 12 or 28 for classroom and 20 for online training course

Practical Exercises: Role-playing with instant feedback, online simulation, and live videotaping 

Graduates: Honeywell, Netgear, Glencore, Cisco, Shell, Toyota, PepsiCo.

3. Action Selling – The Action Selling Process

Since 1990, Action Selling has conducted training to help professionals improve the quality of their sales culture. The Action Selling certification program aims to train sales professionals to improve revenue, grow margins, and become effective sales coaches.

Key Lessons and Value

  • Learn to communicate and reinforce expectations and behaviors within the sales team.
  • Practice the complete action selling system for continuous improvement of sales and service operations.
  • Analyze sales skills throughout the entire sales process.
  • Develop proactive communication processes that treat buyers with respect, leading to repeat business and lasting relationships.

Certification: Certified Action Selling Professional

Delivery Method: Classroom and online asynchronous self-paced learning

Duration: Two days for classroom training

Format: Pre-training benchmark assessment, videos, role-playing, instructor materials, and field-based homework

Fee: From $895 for online training

Location: Onsite

Rating: 5 out of 5

Customization Level: High

Practical Exercises: Group exercises and role-playing facilitated by two moderators and eight role-play actors, demonstrations of selling scenarios

Graduates: Stearns Bank, CHS, Supply Chain Services, Veolia Environmental Services.

4. Richardson Sales Performance – Consultative Selling

The Richardson sales performance company has been offering sales training for over 40 years. Consultative Selling is Richardson’s flagship course, established in 1978. This course is run as a blend of workshop learning, a digital learning platform, and post-training reinforcement.

Key Lessons and Value

  • Understand the science of cognitive dissonance and how to handle client objections.
  • Learn the Consultative Selling Framework to engage buyers in customer-centric dialogue.
  • Develop and expand relationships to increase sales results.
  • Identify customer needs and communicate in a compelling way to close profitable business.

Delivery Method: Classroom and online 

Duration: One-day workshop, four 4-hour instructor-led live online sessions, and ongoing asynchronous self-paced online learning 

Format: Video content, chats, on-the-job assignments, polling, role-playing, and group drills

Fee: Varies

Location: Blend of onsite and synchronous online training

Rating: 4.7 out of 5  

Customization Level: Medium

Practical Exercises: Role-playing, group drills, and breakout groups

Graduates: The Home Depot, The World Bank, Chevron, S&P Global, KPMG, Northwestern Mutual, Goldman Sachs.  

5. Dale Carnegie – Winning With Relationship Selling

Carnegie’s sales training process follows five critical steps. With its customer-first approach, the selling process aims to develop a strategic vision and determine your specific organizational needs. Working with employees at all levels of your organization, the training sessions focus on modelling long-term behaviors to drive your organization toward its sales goals.

Key Lessons and Value

  • Learn ways to build a confident attitude in customer interactions.
  • Develop active listening skills to discern customers’ needs.
  • Discover how to establish credibility.

Certification: Dale Carnegie Badge (Trusted Advisor Certificate)

Delivery Method: In-person and instructor-led synchronous online

Duration: Three consecutive days (9 am to 5 pm) for in-person and 2-hour weekly sessions lasting eight weeks for online training

Format: Lectures, demonstrations, and role-playing with live feedback

Fee: Starting at $1,995 per participant for in-person and $1,795 for live online training

Location: Select cities in the US, Canada, Europe, Central America, South America, Australia, New Zealand, Asia, Middle East, and Africa

Rating: 4.9 out of 5 (Facebook reviews)

Customization Level: Medium

Maximum Class Size: 40

Practical Exercises: Role-playing, situational coaching, real-world assignments

Graduates: John Deere, Coburg, Santa Clara Valley Bank, Connolly Consulting, Green Mountain Coffee, Delta Dental

6. J Barrows – Driving to Close 2020

J Barrows’ signature program, Drive to Close, aims at engaging your sales force and maximizing sales skill sets. To customize the training, J Barrows offers a pre-training session with the organization’s managers. Additionally, the JB sales portal provides post-onsite training to reinforce each of the training topics.  

Key Lessons and Value

  • Learn to efficiently manage the full sales cycle.
  • Know how to improve the quality of interactions throughout the sales process.
  • Prepare for your meeting and sell the right solutions to your prospect.
  • Learn objection-handling techniques.
  • Practice sales closing techniques.

Certification: JBarrows Sales Certification for LinkedIn Profile

Delivery Method: Onsite classroom training, asynchronous online, and synchronous remote

Duration: Full day for onsite and three 2-hour sessions over two weeks for remote sessions. Self-paced online learners have one year’s access to the online portal

Format: Lectures, discussions, role-playing, video content, actionable exercises, and progress reporting

Fee: $10,000 for onsite training and $420 per year per person for asynchronous online training

Location: Onsite

Customization Level: Low

Maximum Class Size: 30

Practical Exercises: Role-playing

Graduates: Google, DocuSign, LinkedIn, Okta, Marketo, Zendesk

7. The Brooks Group – IMPACT Selling

The Brooks Group’s flagship program, IMPACT Selling, focuses on building customer relationships. Through six learning steps, the IMPACT Selling virtual course aims to guide your sales force on building credibility and maintaining alignment with client needs. The course equips salespeople to connect with the target corporate buyers and to understand business challenges.

Key Lessons and Value

  • Practice asking the right open-ended questions and using active listening styles.
  • Understand how to use positioning, prospecting, and pre-call planning to attract qualified buyers.
  • Create the best and most targeted solutions for your clients’ needs.
  • Practice asking for commitments, negotiating, and finalizing the sale to perfect your closing process.

Certification: Certificate of participation 

Delivery Method: Online synchronous instructor-led training  

Duration: Six 2-hour sessions 

Format: Personal assessment, course workbook 

Fee: $1,990 

Rating: 3.8 out of 5 (Facebook reviews) 

Customization Level: None

Practical Exercises: Qstream gamified app

Graduates: Carlton Scale, Volvo Construction Equipment, Diamond Equipment, K-Flex USA

8. RAIN Group – RAIN Selling: Foundations of Consultative Selling

The RAIN Group’s consultative selling program is designed to guide sales professionals to lead effective sales conversations. The program is tailored to the common sales scenarios your sales force likely faces regularly.

Key Lessons and Value

  • Identify additional opportunities and sell broader solution sets.
  • Practice communicating your value proposition and key benefits to the client during the development process.
  • Learn how to connect with buyers and build strong relationships.
  • Develop rapport, needs discovery, collaborations, and presentations to lead masterful sales conversations.

Delivery Method: Classroom and instructor-led synchronous online training

Duration: From 90 minutes for the online training course to a year-long advanced sales curriculum

Format: Onsite workshops, role-playing, interactive virtual sessions, email reinforcement, and coaching

Fee: $299 for online training (special price $99 to support sales teams during the 2020 economic challenges) 

Location: Boston, Toronto, London, Sydney, and other major global cities for classroom training

Customization Level: Low 

Graduates: Lenovo, Citibank, Bright Horizons, BDO

9. ValueSelling Associates – Value-Based Sales Training

Since 1991, ValueSelling Associates has supported B2B professionals in increasing their sales productivity. With their flagship ValueSelling Framework, the company promotes question-based selling with a focus on customer value. Value-Based Sales Training uses a six-step process to customize and ultimately transfer ownership of the methodology to your sales leaders.

Key Lessons and Value

  • Analyze the root causes of your organization’s sales issues.
  • Train your sales force to effectively use the program as a team.
  • Practice how to efficiently prepare for sales calls.
  • Understand how building insightful prospect files can increase credibility.
  • Learn how to engage, qualify, advance, and close sales opportunities.

Delivery Method: Classroom and online synchronous instructor-led training

Format: On-demand e-learning, instructor-led workshops, video reinforcement, activity-based exercises

Location: Onsite for classroom training

Customization Level: Medium

Graduates: Avaya, YouTube, CISCO, Deloitte, Cardinal Health, Motorola

10. GP Strategies – Custom Product Sales Training

GP Strategies provides organizational learning and development solutions in various industries. The company’s talent management solutions aim to support companies in aligning organizational goals, to increase collaboration, and to lead companies in becoming high-performance businesses. The Custom Product Sales Training program is designed to integrate product knowledge, sales skills, and brand advocacy.  

Key Lessons and Value

  • Learn how to increase sales by changing sales rep behaviors.
  • Practice advocacy for company products, services, and brands.
  • Develop skills for warranty administration and information handling.
  • Train managers on visioning, vision-sharing, and operational analysis.
  • Develop management techniques to impact sales and improve bottom-line profits.

Delivery Method: Classroom training and online synchronous training

Duration: Two live training sessions and continuing virtual training for one year 

Format: Instructor-led training, video, mobile learning, and performance support tools

Location: Onsite

Rating: 4.0 out of 5 (Facebook reviews)

Customization Level: Medium

Graduates: Ernst & Young, MasterCard, Paycor, San Francisco 49ers, Barnes & Conti, INERCO Energy Technologies.

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