Seven of the best incentives for sales reps that go beyond compensation

Sales incentives go beyond financial compensation. Learn more in our guide.

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Motivation is of the utmost important in any business but particularly so in sales. You need your sales team to be driven and determined, ready to take risks safe in the knowledge their success will be rewarded. You need go-getters to get going and get those sales flowing in.

The key to motivating your team is to have an incentive plan or program. You need to go beyond merely offering financial compensation, as a manager you must also have an incentive in mind that each of your employees will cherish. Incentives can take many different forms and you shouldn’t focus just on the financials.

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Seven of the best incentive ideas for sales reps

Sales representatives are a varied and fickle breed therefore it shouldn’t be a surprise that there are many different incentives you can use. Of all of these, seven stand out in particular and we’re going to list them out for you here. They’re easily implemented so any business person can use them.

Remote working days

One of the unforeseen consequences of the coronavirus is the rapid rise in remote working. Companies may well make remote working more permanent and right now offering remote work to your team is a great incentive. Make remote work a reward for your sales people.

Reward your best performer with remote working days each month especially if they won’t have to attend any face-to-face meetings with clients. You don’t need to insist that they stay at their home either. These remote day rewards can take place in vacation destinations, leave that decision up to the employee.

Remote working will likely become a much more common feature at companies so becoming used to this incentive early on is a good idea. Just make sure you plan the whole team’s remote working days to avoid disruption.

Introduce a raffle system

Everybody likes to be a winner and everyone likes something for free. Consider introducing a raffle system at your work to make your winners winners. You don’t need to plan for this to become complicated; simply tie the raffle system to closed deals.

For every closed deal a team member secures you give them one entry ticket to the raffle. The more closed deals, the more tickets, making a prize more likely. This method is cheaper than handing out a prize per deal and it makes the reward process a little more fun.

A raffle is a good incentive for sales reps as it directly rewards your best performers while also celebrating every achievement on your team. Thus, everyone is included.

Monthly cuisine party

The pizza party is a tried and test incentive, and while (almost) everybody loves pizza this idea has become a little stale. To jazz it up why not set up a monthly cuisine party instead? This method is more interesting than stale pizza for two reasons.

Firstly you make it more interesting by highlighting different cuisines which keeps things varied. Secondly, you can either have everyone vote on which cuisine to eat or allow the month’s best performer to choose themselves. Just make sure you have plenty of options on hand.

Your team will enjoy being part of the decision making process and trying new foods will be a bonding experience. Be creative, and look for interesting new food to try.

Leadership opportunity

A successful sales professional usually combines both initiative and confidence. These qualities make such individuals strong candidates for leadership. You can reward their efforts and incentivize your employees to go further by making leadership opportunities an incentive.

Try giving some of your own responsibilities to high performers on your team. This might involve giving them a section of your meetings, taking on specific clients, or asking them to train new members of the team.

For this to act as an incentive you need to emphasize that you’re giving them extra responsibility because you’re impressed with the job they’re doing. Also, ensure that you let them know that this extra responsibility may serve as a precursor to a pay rise.

Share targets publicly

If you have an open plan office then you should place monitors around your workspace that display statistics about your team. These statistics should include the individual targets of each team member. Set the information on display to shift between each team member so that everyone can see their colleagues’s targets.

This acts as an incentive as your team will be inspired by the success of their colleagues. They will also want to avoid falling behind as their failure will be broadcast to the rest of the team. This incentive therefore utilizes a carrot and stick approach.

Encourage discussion about your targets and program, and foster an environment that welcomes frank discussions about improvements. Sensitivity about success or lack thereof is not beneficial to corporate achievement after all.

Offer access and tickets to events

For those of us who remain stuck in lockdown attending events in the real world is some distance away. However, we will eventually get back to normal, it’s important to remember that. Offering your team tickets to events like concerts, sports matches etc is an excellent incentive.

The more exclusive the event the better. You may already enjoy corporate partnerships with other companies that give you free tickets, but also consider the needs and interests of each employee in question. One member of your sales team might enjoy basketball whereas another may prefer the theatre.

If you know someone’s interests you can plan incentives around them. They’ll also appreciate a reward more if it is tailor made for them, so do your research, get to know your employees.

Commission spiking

If your sales team operates under a commission system then you should consider setting aside a specific day where you will dramatically increase your commission rate. This will generate a massive spike in productivity. In essence, it will be like a feeding frenzy.

This method has specific considerations to bear in mind but it can be very effective. This incentive is especially useful during periods of low sales, or towards the end of the month or financial year. The timing needs to be perfect and known only to the team leader.

The commission spike plan will only work if everyone on the team is involved as well so make sure nobody misses out. Therefore it needs to take place on a day when everyone is in the office, not at meetings or working from home.

Which incentive method is your favourite?

Do you have a particularly favoured incentive method you use for your team? Tell us about which methods you use to motivate your team, what best motivates you collectively and individually. We’d love to hear about your experiments, ideas and successes in this area.

We hope you enjoyed this article on sales incentives and the good news is that we have plenty more for you to read on our blog. Make sure you check back for our latest content on sales incentives, selling systems, and other sales industry issues. Don’t forget to also like and subscribe to our social media pages for the latest sales news and updates.