Best Sales Training Programs

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Sales programs can help you and your team learn to better prepare and execute your sales plan. When signing up for a sales training program, you can expect a range of resources designed to help participants learn the strategies that turn prospects into customers, such as prospecting for leads and closing high-value sales.

When looking for the best sales training programs, it’s important to choose a reputable course provider that offers trusted, reliable information at a price point that works for your budget. We reviewed the best sales training programs around with a focus on cost, effectiveness, and other criteria to help you find the right program for your business needs.

The Best Sales Training Programs for 2021

Best Overall : The Art of Sales : Mastering the Selling Process Specialization

Coursera

 Coursera

We chose The Art of Sales: Mastering the Selling Process Specialization as the best sales training program because it covers a broad range of sales topics from a reputable university for free.

Pros
  • The course covers topics related to building an efficient sales process

  • Learn from Northwestern University with no tuition or fees

  • Completely online course offered through Coursera platform

Cons
  • Beginner-level course doesn’t cover many more advanced sales techniques

  • The lengthy course takes approximately four months to complete

If you want a high-quality sales training program that doesn’t break the bank, look no further than our top choice, The Art of Sales: Mastering the Selling Process Specialization. This course is offered for free from Northwestern University through Coursera.

This course is actually made up of a group of four sub-courses on customer segmentation and prospecting, connecting with sales prospects, sales pitch and closing, and building a toolkit for your sales process. It includes self-paced videos and readings. Test your progress along the way with practice quizzes and graded assignments.

This course holds a 4.8 out of 5 average rating on Coursera, based on 1,264 reviews. With a roughly three-hour-per-week commitment, you should finish in about four months and be on your way to sales success.

Upon successful completion, you can earn a course certificate perfect for showing off your expertise on your resume or LinkedIn. However, it’s worth taking for the knowledge alone, even if you don’t care about the certificate.

Best Relationship Sales : RAIN Selling : Foundations of Consultative Selling

RAIN Group

RAIN Group

Foundations of Consultative Selling is a top choice for relationship-based sales due to its customized, modular approach to expanding sales skills to navigate complex and high-value sales.

Pros
  • Custom course for your team’s needs

  • A mix of onsite workshops and virtual instruction

  • Clear learning objectives designed to improve sales results

Cons
  • Customized offerings may be expensive

  • Consultation required for a price quote

While someone may buy a basic retail item without much persuasion, some high-value products and services find much better sales success focusing on relationships. RAIN Selling: Foundations of Consultative Selling from RAIN Group is designed for sales consultants and executives and crafts customized solutions for each client through a unique relationship.

RAIN Group customizes this course to meet your business’s needs. That includes online workshops, live virtual training sessions, assessments, and coaching. In one case study, RAIN Group says that a client’s sales increased by 30% after completing this course.

Major topics covered include sales conversions, communicating value, understanding buyers, building rapport, closing with integrity, overcoming objections, and avoiding common sales mistakes.

RAIN Group is a major international training company and can leave your team poised to grow your top line confidently. There is no fixed cost for RAIN Selling. The cost will vary depending on your business’s customized training package.

Best Virtual Sales Training : IMPACT Selling Professional Virtual Sales Training Program

The Brooks Group

 The Brooks Group

We picked this virtual course because it covers essential sales topics in a straightforward way that includes live, on-demand, and game-based education from a recognized training company.

Pros
  • The course is customized to each company’s specific challenges and needs

  • The course follows a clear framework designed by a major sales trainer

  • A combination of live and self-paced instruction including gamified elements

Cons
  • No pricing without a custom quote

  • Custom training courses can be expensive

The Brooks Group offers a completely online sales training course that could be great for improving your team’s skills whether they’re working from home or full-time in the office. This course is made for sales professionals and teaches the IMPACT framework of converting prospects to customers.

IMPACT is short for Investigate, Meet, Probe, Apply, Convince, Tie it up. Course topics focus on helping sales teams improve sales and margins, shortened sales cycles, pre-call planning, and selling virtually. This sales training program is customized for each company to meet your specific business challenges.

The Brooks Group is an award-winning training source. Contact the company for a custom quote on sales training. You may find it isn’t the cheapest option, but your team should walk away with new knowledge to increase sales and improve customer retention across industries.

Best In-Person Sales Training : Winning with Relationship Selling

Dale Carnegie

Dale Carnegie

We like this course’s focus on building positive relationships to drive sales using a modern take of the well-known principles taught in the landmark book "How to Win Friends and Influence People."

Pros
  • In-person training sessions designed for relationship sales professionals

  • Course from a recognized name in relationships and business training

  • Learn the entire course over a compact period of time

Cons
  • The course has a hefty price tag

  • It may be hard to find a convenient session near you

Author Dale Carnegie may be best known for his bestselling book "How to Win Friends and Influence People," which still flies off the shelves despite a 1930s publication date. Fans of Carnegie’s work may be drawn to sales courses from his namesake company. Winning with Relationship Selling helps sales representatives learn to project a confident attitude, actively listen to customer concerns, establish credibility, and sell a customer-centric solution.

This course is designed to help salespeople show why your company is better than online self-service options. Depending on the version you choose, completion may count toward certification credits for HR, project management, and accounting professionals. The course is regularly offered through learning centers around the country. An upcoming session in Los Angeles requires 8:30 am to 4:30 pm sessions over three days for $2,095.

Dale Carnegie uses an approach built around awareness, experiences, and sustainment to turn what you learn into actionable results. The Dale Carnegie company still follows Carnegie’s original lessons around self-improvement through its award-winning network of 2,700 professional trainers worldwide.

Best Inbound Sales : Inbound Sales

Hubspot

 Hubspot

We picked this inbound sales course because it comes from a well-known online marketing leader and is offered completely for free.

Pros
  • Free inbound sales course

  • The online course includes a combination of media formats, including video and quizzes

  • Easily completed in under three hours

Cons
  • Not as in-depth as longer, multi-day courses

  • HubSpot account required to take the course

The free Inbound Sales Course from HubSpot is a great primer for both new sales reps and experienced sales managers looking to round out their skills and knowledge in the modern sales environment. This course touches on the most important parts of the sales cycle, from identifying prospects to running effective sales calls and presentations.

The course is broken down into five lessons with 21 videos and five quizzes. The total course content runs for a little more than two hours. Each lesson comes from a different instructor. The five lessons teach inbound sales fundamentals, how to prioritize active buyers, earning attention from your busy potential customers, understanding what buyers are looking for, and delivering personalized sales presentations.

Successful completion leads to a HubSpot Inbound Sales certification. The course includes a sales strategy that works for businesses selling virtually any product or service. When you’re done, you may want to stick around for additional free sales training on the platform. Other related courses cover social media marketing, search engine optimization (SEO), email marketing, and HubSpot training, among dozens of others.

Bottom Line

When sales are the lifeblood of your business, you can’t afford to have an ill-trained sales team. Whether you’re looking to improve your own skills or run your own sales organization, sales training courses can be a cost-effective way to improve your growth prospects.

Any of these top sales training programs may be a good fit for your business. Our top choice, The Art of Sales, is a free sales training course from a top university professor. Others may come with a higher price tag, but also include a customized curriculum designed just for your business. Here’s a recap of our favorites and which sales training program may be best for your unique business needs:

Compare Providers

Sales Training Program Why We Picked It Key Details
The Art of Sales: Mastering the Selling Process Specialization Best Overall Free sales training course taught by Northwestern University
RAIN Selling: Foundations of Consultative Selling Best Relationship Sales A fully customized sales training program from a recognized leader in business training
IMPACT Selling Professional Virtual Sales Training Program Best Virtual Sales Training A custom course that uses live virtual training, self-paced videos, and gamified features
Winning with Relationship Selling Best In-Person Sales Training Sales program based on author Dale Carnegie’s teachings
Inbound Sales Best Inbound Sales Free two-hour course from a recognized name in online marketing

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is a Sales Course?

A sales training course is an online or in-person program designed to teach business owners, managers, and sales staff modern sales techniques. The best sales training courses include a mix of written, video, and interactive content that leaves participants prepared to put their newfound sales knowledge to action.

Sales training courses can be free or available for many thousands of dollars. Because goals, schedules, and budgets vary, there is no perfect course for everyone. Instead, it’s best to understand what you’re looking to achieve and pick the best sales course that aligns with that.

How Can I Improve My Sales Training?

Some experienced business leaders may be able to run staff sales training on their own. But in many cases, adding outside expertise can bring fresh ideas and trusted expertise to your training program.

For the best results, you may want to combine in-house training sessions, online training courses, and out-of-office training seminars. When you work to constantly improve your sales process and train your team, you’re making a smart investment in your business’s long-term prospects.

How Do You Motivate a Sales Team?

The winning formula to motivating your sales team may be a combination of results-based compensation and some healthy internal competition. Just be sure to maintain an atmosphere that avoids the stresses of some cutthroat sales cultures.

Ask your team how you can best support them and motivate them to succeed in their role. Employee surveys and innovative compensation features help build on sales staff engagement and performance.

How We Chose the Best Sales Training Programs

To pick the best sales training programs, we reviewed more than 30 different options from a variety of sources. The main areas of focus were topics covered, the reputation of the course provider, cost, and expected results. Each of the sales training courses in this list uses an action-oriented approach that should help any business that wants to grow through new and larger sales.