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How to Write the Perfect Sales Resume: Tips & Resume Example

Are you a sales professional eager to get your ideal job at the company of your dreams? Is pitching, hustling, and landing deals your calling? If the answer is yes, then you need to know how to write a great sales resume that will land you the perfect position. 

In a nutshell, a good sales resume should always include: 

  • Action verbs 
  • Quantifiable sales achievements 
  • Sales-related courses and education 
  • Hard and soft skills that make you a good salesperson 
  • Clear structure and division of sections 

In this guide, we'll cover proper sales resume formatting in more detail, what key sections to include, and what sections are optional. We'll also take a look at a sales resume example from a real salesperson who got hired.

Let's start! 

How to format your sales resume? 

When writing a sales resume, your first step should be choosing the right resume format. Resumes can come in all different kinds of styles, but generally fit into one of three main categories: 

  1. Reverse-chronological resume. This is a standard resume format that focuses on your work experience, making it a good option if you're an experienced professional. If you choose this format, make the work experience section the core of your resume and list your jobs from the most recent to the oldest one. The order of the sections is: contact info, summary, work experience, education, skills, other optional sections.
  2. Functional resumes. Here, the main focus is on skills and accomplishments, making it a good option if you have limited work experience or if you're seeking a career change. The order of the sections is: contact info, summary/objective, skills, work experience/education (depends on whether you're a student or professional), other optional sections.
  3. Combination resume. As the name suggests, a combination resume combines elements from both reverse-chronological and functional resumes to create a document that shares its focus between all sections. This can be a great option if you have both relevant work experience and skills that you want to emphasize. The order of the sections is: contact info, summary, skills, work experience, education, and other optional sections.

As you can see, choosing the best resume format for you heavily depends on where you are in your career. Once you've chosen which format best fits your needs, you can easily achieve the proper resume structure by using a resume template

A resume builder can be incredibly helpful, making your resume look great and saving you lots of time and effort in your resume-writing process. 

What to include on a sales resume? 

Once your resume format is squared away, the next key step is to make sure that you include all the necessary sections in your document. These are the 5 key sections that every (sales) resume should include:

  1. Contact information. When an employer decides to reach out to you, they need to be able to find your contact information easily. Because of that, your contact information should be clearly listed at the top of your resume.
  2. Professional summary. Following your contact information, you need a way to hook the attention of the employer and keep them reading. This is done with a professional summary, which is placed at the top of the page, right under your contact info. Think of it as your sales pitch — but in this case, you're selling your skills and experience.
  3. Sales experience and achievements. Sales experience is a work experience section where you list your previous jobs and core achievements. Make sure to use bullet points to keep this section easy to read for employers.
  4. Sales skills. Of course, professional skills are a must on a sales resume.
  5. Education. Finally, a sales resume should always include an education section that lists your highest level of education. Along with any school and university information, this is also the best section for including any relevant certifications or other educational credentials (unless you want to place it in a separate section). 

Now, let's take a look at each of these sections in more detail and how to best optimize them for your sales resume.

1. Start your sales resume with your contact information

As we’ve already mentioned, your sales resume should always begin with your contact information. Here’s a rundown of what to include and what to leave out.

  • This information is a must in the contact information resume section: name, email address, and other means of contact (phone number/LinkedIn). 
  • Don't include personal information such as age, country of origin, or marital status (unless it's required in your country).
  • You may also want to reconsider including your home address. On the one hand, if your home is located close to your potential workplace, recruiters will know that employing you won't cost the firm any extra money. On the other hand, if you'd have to relocate for the job, it makes the recruitment process longer, as well as more expensive.

Want to see an example?

Contact information section example

John Doe, Sales Professional | (123) 456-7890 |

Atlanta, GA

What’s great about this contact information section: 

  • The applicant’s name is emphasized in bold, making the name stand out to employers.
  • The information is organized neatly and can easily be placed in the top-left corner of the resume. 
  • The applicant provides three forms of contact — an email address, a phone number, and a professional LinkedIn account.

2. Add a catchy professional summary next

Now that the employer knows how to contact you, you must convince them that they should contact you. While the entire resume is ultimately working toward the goal of winning over the employer, the point of your professional summary is to make a perfect first impression. 

A professional summary should highlight your top relevant qualifications and achievements, whether it's a number of successful clients or a percentage of increased revenue. Here's an example:

Sales professional summary example

Results-oriented sales professional with 5+ years of experience in driving sales growth and achieving revenue objectives. Achieved an average of 25% annual sales growth, increased customer satisfaction ratings by 35%, and delivered a 15% reduction in customer acquisition costs. Highly skilled in client relationship building, market analysis, and product promotion.

What makes this professional summary great:

  • The applicant is using quantifiable achievements  (25% annual sales growth).
  • The applicant highlights the relevant skills (market analysis).
  • It clearly states who they are right at the beginning of the summary. 
  • It's the perfect length. 

3. Describe your professional sales experience

After you’ve completed your professional summary and are pleased with how it sounds, you can finally move on to the arguably most important part of your sales resume — work experience. That is, unless you're a fresh graduate or changing careers. If that's the case, you should focus more on other sections, such as education or skills. However, if you already have an existing experience in the field of sales, you really want to highlight this section. 

To make a sales experience section as effective as possible, make sure to include:

  • Dates and location. Indicate where your sales experience took place and when it started and ended. 
  • Name of the company. This will come in handy, especially if you have had a chance to work for a prestigious firm. 
  • Achievements and quantifiable data. Working in sales is all about seeking measurable achievements. So your resume should be all about that, too. In your work experience, you can mention a few key duties, but it should be mainly about achievements and quantifiable data (such as sales numbers, sales improvements, etc.).
  • Bullet points. Bullet points are essential for a work experience section, as they help keep your job descriptions structured and easy to read. For each bullet point, stick to one sentence and between one to two lines of text.
  • Bold. Make the recruiter's job easier and highlight the key information or data in bold. They'll appreciate it. 
  • Use keywords. Remember to continually use relevant keywords from the job description — it will show you're a great fit for the role (and will also please the ATS). 

Pro tip: Want a career in sales but not sure how to get sales experience? Check out this great article on 8 Ways to Get Sales Experience.

Sales experience resume section example

Sales Supervisor, MH Corporation LLC

 07/2017 – 07/2020 | Fairfax, VA, United States

  • Coordinated and managed 2 sales teams to ensure that the company’s revenue goals were always met.
  • Identified and communicated with potential customers and developed and implemented new sales strategies and plans which led to a 5% increase in overall company earnings. 
  • Reviewed and analyzed market trends and recruited and trained over 50 new sales personnel. 
  • Recognized as a top-achieving employee for increasing sales by 150% within 2 years. 

What’s great about this sales experience section: 

  • The applicant clearly lists their former job title and former employer — these details add credibility to your resume, as they can easily be verified.
  • The applicant includes several quantifiable data points.
  • The applicant shortly highlights key responsibilities.

4. Showcase your sales skills 

Sales professionals need to have an impressive set of skills to be successful. Whether it's communication with customers, negotiation, strategy, or problem-solving, it's important to know which abilities to include in your sales resume.

If you struggle with this, it can be helpful to first divide your skills according to what type of ability they are. In general, skills fit into two main categories:

  1. Hard skills. These are your learned abilities that are required for a specific job. For sales professionals, this may include: proficiency in sales software, telecommunication skillslanguage proficiencies, and writing reports. 
  2. Soft skills. These are mostly inherent, but they can also be perfected or learned. They often refer to a person’s ability to communicate and collaborate well with others. Some of the most common interpersonal sales skills are: strong verbal communication, confidence, negotiation skills, and persuasion

You can include both of these types of skills in a dedicated “Skills” section. In the end, they're equally, if not more important in the eyes of recruiters. 

Here's an example of a skills section for a sales resume: 

Skills section resume example 


  • German (Native)
  • English
  • French

Computer Skills

  • Microsoft Office
  • Pipedrive, TradeGecko
  • Brightpearl, Freshsales
  • HubSpot Sales

Soft Skills

  • Ability to work under pressure
  • Communication skills
  • Good team player
  • Leadership skills
  • Multitasking
  • Persuasion Skills
  • Time Management

What’s great about this skills section:

  • The applicant lists both hard and soft skills.
  • The applicant divides their skills according to type, making the entire section easier for the recruiter to skim through.
  • The applicant lists skills that are highly relevant to the job they're applying for. 

5. List your educational background

The final section that you absolutely must include on your sales resume is the education section.

The sales industry is vast and diverse, with professionals from all different types of educational backgrounds. As such, your education won't necessarily make or break your resume — but it's still vital information to share with potential employers. Especially if your education is something that you're proud of. 

But if you lack a degree or some form of higher education, fill this section with certifications and coursework that are relevant to a sales job instead. Here's a sales education example:

Education section example

BA in Business & Management, University of Southampton

09/2013 – 05/2017 | Southampton, United Kingdom

  • First Class Honours (Top 10% of the Programme)
  • The 2017 Academic Excellence Award winner
  • Clubs and Societies: Economics Society, FinTech Society, Volleyball Club

What makes this education section great: 

  • The applicant lists their program of study and the academic institution they attended.
  • The applicant includes their graduation date.
  • The applicant includes three bullet points of additional academic information, each highlighting a different achievement. This is a good move to make, especially if you're a fresh graduate. However, once your career has taken off, you can make your education section less detailed.

6. Add optional sections to your sales resume

The sections that we've discussed thus far simply must be included in your resume. But there may be more relevant information that you want to include in your sales resume, but it doesn't fit into any of these categories. That's what additional sections are for. 

When you're adding optional sections to a resume, the key thing to do is to ask yourself whether the extra information is truly needed and relevant.

Here are some optional sections you can add to your resume: 

  • Certifications: If you have a number of relevant certifications, you may want to consider adding a “Certifications” section either below or near your “Education” section. Generally, you should only create a dedicated certifications section if you have three or more certifications. 
  • Awards: If you can't find the right way to incorporate awards into your work experience section or a professional summary, a dedicated awards section may be just the thing you need. 
  • Hobbies: In many cases, employers look at resumes not just to see an applicant’s qualifications, but also to get a sense of their character and personality. A “Hobbies” section helps you humanize yourself and gives the employer personal details that can be used as ice-breakers later on.
  • Volunteering. If you do any kind of volunteering, this section can help you show that you're an active member of your community and that you're willing to put in that extra work. 

Sales resume example

Okay, now that we've gone over the fundamentals of writing a strong sales resume, let's really dig in and get a better understanding! The best way to do this is to take a look at an example. Check out this sales resume from a real person who got hired as a Sales Promoter by SelectQuote.

sales resume example
sales resume example
sales resume example

Source: Kickresume

What’s great about this resume:

  • The information is incredibly well-organized.
  • Using color to bring greater contrast and visual appeal to the resume.
  • The applicant uses a lot of strong and active language to describe themselves and their skills. 
  • Despite the dedicated “Skills” or “Achievements” sections, the applicant still describes their best skills and achievements throughout the work experience section. 
  • Along with including all the necessary sections, the applicant includes a “Hobbies” section that showcases their personal passions and adds a nice human touch to the resume. 

Now you know what it takes to write an effective sales resume. We wish you the best of luck on your job hunt and in your sales career!

Patricija Šobak's profile image
Patricija Šobak puts her talent in spotting questionable grammar and shady syntax to good use by writing about various business-related topics. Besides advocating the use of the Oxford comma, she also likes coffee, dogs, and video games. People find her ability to name classic rock songs only from the intro both shocking and impressive.