Working in sales is a demanding job, especially when you have stretch goals and quotas to reach. While many sales techniques have worked for ages, selling strategies are constantly changing, especially as new technology enters the landscape. Successful sales professionals embrace continuing their education and honing their skills with sales certifications courses throughout their career to help them learn new selling strategies and sharpen their skillset.
Here are nine of the best sales certifications and sales courses available.
1. HubSpot Academy Inbound Sales Certification
Who it’s for: Account executives and sales managers who need strategies for sales outreach and meetings
Course details: Five lessons, 21 videos, and five quizzes for a total of two hours and 11 minutes of instructional content
The HubSpot Academy Inbound Sales Course covers the basics of inbound sales for new sales representatives and experienced account executives looking for a refresher. Topics include things like identifying and connecting with new prospects, uncovering pain points, creating effective sales presentations, and developing a plan for client success.
2. Huthwaite International SPIN Sales Training Account Strategy Certification
Who it’s for: Sales reps looking for ways to manage deals with a long or complex sales cycle
Cost: Email or call for pricing information
Course details: Virtual delivery model including breakout rooms and peer-to-peer support during three virtual sessions that last about four hours each
Huthwaite International’s SPIN Account Strategy Course is an excellent training course for seasoned sales professionals who regularly deal with long, complex sales cycles–often where high-dollar deals are being made. Participants learn about buyer psychology and the decision-making process, and how to personalize your selling approach for each customer. You’ll also learn how to build value, understand your competition, and how to handle issues that arise late in the sales cycle to keep your deals moving forward.
3. HubSpot Academy Sales Software Certification
Who it’s for: Account executives and sales managers who use HubSpot CRM, and who want to learn how to organize contacts and nurture lead and customer relationships
Course details: Three lessons, 17 videos, and three quizzes for a total of one hour and eight minutes of instructional content
HubSpot offers a powerful, free CRM that allows salespeople to track deals, conversations, and contacts effectively with easy-to-use software. Once you’ve adopted the software, HubSpot Academy’s Sales Software Course helps your sales team learn how to organize your records and contacts, use HubSpot’s optional Sales Hub to make contact with leads, and get maximum value from the CRM to close your deals more efficiently.
4. NASP-certified Professional Sales Person Certification
Who it’s for: CEOs, sales reps, managers, and business owners who want to learn the basics of selling and sharpen their existing skills
Course details: A six-week course that must be completed in 45 days, taking an average of 20-30 minutes per day, with a minimum score of 80% on the final exam
The National Association of Sales Professionals (NASP) offers the certified professional sales person (CPSP) course for sales professionals from a wide range of industries and company sizes. The course enables you to hone your sales techniques and learn how to close more deals.
You will learn how to shorten the sales cycle, effectively overcome common objections, create positive sales habits, and close more sales. You also take a seller style assessment to help discover what type of seller you are and how to use your style to your advantage. While it has a price tag you’ll need to budget for, it stands out to potential employers.
5. HubSpot Academy Sales Enablement Training Certification
Who it’s for: Marketing and sales managers who want to learn how to develop a sales enablement strategy
Course details: 12 lessons, 40 videos, and 12 quizzes for a total of four hours and 29 minutes of instructional content
HubSpot Academy’s Sales Enablement Training Certification teaches sales and marketing professionals how to create an effective sales enablement strategy to help qualify leads and create buyer personas. Participants who earn this certification will know how to develop a lead qualification strategy, learn how content is powerful in the selling process, and how to use sales enablement technology.
6. SMEI Certified Sales Executive® Exam Preparatory Online Course
Who it’s for: Sales managers who want to learn new strategies for meeting and exceeding revenue goals
Cost: $1,039, with payment plans available
Course details: 15 lessons, including lecture videos and review sections
The SMEI Certified Sales Executive® (CSE®) Exam Preparatory Online Course prepares sales professionals to take the Sales & Marketing Executives International (SMEI) Certified Sales Executive® (CSE®) exam. Participants learn how to outline and develop the sales management process, create sales functions, identify and utilize sales channels, and dive into common challenges sales managers face. Furthermore, those who complete the course will understand how to conduct team members’ performance reviews, set group goals, and how to motivate and reward sales reps effectively.
7. HubSpot Academy Sales Management Training Certification
Who it’s for: New sales managers or sales reps working towards becoming managers
Course details: Six lessons, 17 videos, and six quizzes for a total of two hours and 59 minutes of instructional content
HubSpot offers a Sales Management Training Certification for new and aspiring sales managers to help them learn how to manage and lead a successful sales team effectively. Participants discover how to define their target audience, develop a scalable sales process, create effective sales training programs, and coach and hire the best talent for their organization.
8. The Art of Sales: Mastering the Selling Process Specialization Certification (Offered by Northwestern)
Who it’s for: Sales professionals looking to advance their skills and learn new strategies
Cost: You may enroll for college credit and pay through Northwestern, or audit the course for free and still receive the certification
Course details: 100% online course with a flexible schedule, which takes about four months to complete
Through Northwestern University, Coursera offers The Art of Sales: Mastering the Selling Process Specialization Certification for sales professionals of all levels. Topics include prospecting and customer segmentation, connecting with sales leads, developing a sales pitch, closing deals, and building a sales toolkit. Participants also complete a hands-on project after completing the course and receive a certificate badge they can display on things like their LinkedIn profile and resumes.
9. Hubspot Academy Frictionless Sales Certification Course
Who it’s for: Executive sales leaders, CEOs, and sales managers
Course details: Three lessons and 12 videos for a total of one hour and one minute of instructional content
HubSpot’s Frictionless Sales Certification Course teaches sales leaders the concept of viewing inbound sales as flywheels rather than funnels. It describes the flywheel as a sales model where you gain momentum when you focus your organization around delivering the best customer experience in the industry, which revolves around adding force to the flywheel rather than eliminating friction from it. Participants learn the frictionless selling framework, how to cultivate a culture of continuous learning, and how to align your sales team with your target buyer.
Benefits of Earning Sales Certifications
While there’s no replacement for on-the-job experience, proactively earning sales certifications helps your career in many ways, and enables you to better meet customer needs. Here are just a few of the benefits sales certifications offer:
- Increased job opportunities, especially when competing for a sales role against others who don’t have specific certifications
- Career advancement—you are more likely to be promoted when you have specialized certifications
- Ability to close deals more efficiently with new skills and strategies
- Networking with other sales professionals and mentors through workshops and training sessions
Sales certifications and courses are an integral part of any sales professionals’ career. Use this guide to discover which certifications are most essential to your specific sales career path and ambitions. Earning new certifications helps you hone your skills, network with others, and close more deals.