Best Sales Certifications to advance your career

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6 minutes read
There are various training programs and certifications that claim they can boost your sales skills. The best ones can make you a better salesperson and make your resume more impressive.

When you want to move up in your sales career, certifications can help, but having a track record of doing well is often more important.

It’s pretty logical, right? Doing a good job on the sales front is proof you can sell effectively. Certifications provide valuable training, but they might not carry as much weight as real success at work.

However, not all certifications are worth your time and money.

In this article, we’ll explain what a certification is and how it can make your resume look better while helping you advance in your sales career.

We’ll also take a look at the top certifications that are available for both salespeople and sales leaders. Finally, we’ll provide some tips on how to choose the right certification for you.

What are Sales Certifications?

Sales certifications are like badges you earn after completing special training. These badges show that you have learned specific skills in sales, kind of like becoming an expert in a particular area.

Imagine you’re playing a video game, and you earn a badge when you complete a tough level. Certifications work a bit like that. They show you’ve achieved something significant in the world of sales.

These certifications cover various things, like how to be really good at helping customers or how to negotiate deals. Some are about understanding the steps in the sales process or using specific strategies to sell better.

These certifications come in different levels, just like in video games. 

Some are for beginners, while others are for more experienced salespeople. The way you earn them can also vary. Some are quick and easy, like finishing a short online course, while others might take longer, like a weekend or even a few weeks.

Getting these certifications can be helpful for your sales career in a few ways:

  1. They show that you’ve been trained in important sales skills. This can make it easier for you to find a job or get a promotion.
  2. They prove that you’re serious about sales and getting better at it.
  3. They give you an advantage if you want to switch to a different job or industry.
  4. They boost your confidence and make you an expert in the sales process.

So, sales certifications are like earning rewards in a game. They let everyone know that you’ve put in the time to become really good at selling things.

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Best Sales Certification

ProviderCertificationBest ForCostCourse Layout & Duration
NASPCertified Professional Sales Person (CPSP)Sales managers aiming to boost their team’s performance$695Six weeks of modules and sales courses online plus exam
smeiCertified Sales Executive (CSE)Sales leaders needing to improve revenue goal attainment$989Self-paced videos for 15 chapters plus an exam
Huthwaite InternationalSPIN Selling Training CertificationB2B sales reps looking to improve deal-closing efficiencyMust contact for pricingSeven weeks of virtual or in-person training, or self-paced modules
NRF FoundationRISE Up Customer Service and Sales SpecialistCustomer service and sales reps seeking communication skills$12514 hours of self-guided videos, modules, and quizzes
NASPCertified Professional Sales Leader (CPSL)Executives and business owners who want to see revenue increases$795Six weeks of online courses and modules plus exam
AA-ISPCertified Inside Sales Professional (CISP)Beginner inside sales reps seeking sales process knowledge$875 for members, $1,020 for non-members11 courses of self-guided modules and videos that take 8-12 weeks

Certified Professional Sales Person (CPSP)

CPSP, or Certified Professional Sales Person, is good for salespeople and their managers who want better selling skills. It costs $695 and takes about 6 weeks to finish. It covers things like handling customer problems, making good sales habits, closing deals, and speeding up the sales process.

  • Good for salespeople and their bosses who want to get better at selling.
  • It costs $695, and it takes about six weeks to finish.
  • You’ll learn about solving customer problems, building good selling habits, and making the selling process faster.

CPSP is run by the National Association of Sales Professionals (NASP). It’s helpful if you’re someone who wants to improve your sales skills or manage a sales team. It teaches you how to talk to customers effectively, the steps customers go through to buy things, and strategies top salespeople use to make big sales. The main goal is to boost your confidence and give you insights to become an excellent salesperson.

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Certified Sales Executive (CSE)

CSE, or Certified Sales Executive, is good for people who lead and guide sales teams to work together and meet goals. It costs $989 and has 15 chapters with videos, reviews, and a final test. The course covers things like making sales strategies, setting and reaching goals, building your team, learning key info for good selling, being a sales leader, and keeping your team motivated.

  • For people who lead sales teams and want to make them work together better.
  • It costs $989 and is made up of 15 chapters with videos, reviews, and a final test.
  • You’ll learn about setting goals, building strong teams, and more.

SMEI, or Sales & Marketing Executives International, runs CSE. They focus on courses and certifications for leaders. In CSE, you learn about managing the sales part of a business. That includes things like hiring the right team members, having them communicate well, keeping their sales enthusiasm up, and hitting targets. You also learn about using technology and understanding customers to improve sales.

SPIN Selling Certification

The SPIN Selling course is for people who sell products or services to other businesses. It gives them skills to get better at closing deals. They learn to find the real needs of customers and show how they can meet those needs. The price is not listed, so you have to ask about it. You can take a 7-week in-person or online class, or go through the course online at your own pace.

  • This course is for people who sell things to other businesses.
  • You’ll learn how to understand what the customer really needs before selling them something.
  • The cost isn’t mentioned, so you’ll have to ask them for the price.

The course focuses on the SPIN selling method, created in the late 1980s. It’s about understanding the customer’s needs before trying to sell to them. This approach aims to speed up the often long process of selling to businesses. Huthwaite International runs the course. They specialize in sales, negotiation, and communication training. The course is great for account managers and can really improve their job performance. It’s especially helpful for selling to other businesses.

RISE UP Customer Service & Sales

The RISE UP Customer Service & Sales Specialist certification is for people working in customer service and sales jobs at retail stores. It costs $125 and you can complete it online at your own pace. The course has videos, online activities, and quizzes.

  • Great for people who work in customer service and sales at retail stores.
  • It costs $125, and you can do it online at your own pace.
  • You’ll learn how to understand customers, talk to them well, and make sure they’re happy and buy things.

The certification is from the National Retail Foundation (NRF). They offer lots of courses on different parts of the retail industry, like supply chain and operations. The Customer Service and Sales Certified Specialist certification is specifically for people who work directly with customers at retail stores. It teaches you how to understand customer needs, know the products, interact well with customers, and make sure they are happy and buy things.

Certified Professional Sales Leader (CPSL)

The “Certified Professional Sales Leader” (CPSL) course is good for top sales executives, business owners who want more profits, and anyone who handles sales operations like managers and vice presidents. Even small business owners can benefit.

  • This is for big bosses in sales or business owners who want to make more money for their company.
  • It costs $795 and takes about six weeks to finish.
  • You’ll learn how to make your sales team better and be a good leader.

The course costs $795 and takes about 6 weeks online. At the end, you take a final test. It gives you skills to be a good sales leader, improve your sales team, and give your team what they need to succeed. You learn the art of leadership, which can mean more money for your business.

Certified Inside Sales Professional (CISP)

The “Certified Inside Sales Professional (CISP)” course is great for people in inside jobs who want to fully understand the sales process. For members of the America Association of Inside Sales Professionals, it costs $875. For non-members, it’s $1,020. You can go at your own pace, usually 8-12 weeks.

  • This course is like a full package about sales, great for inside salespeople.
  • If you’re a member, it costs $875, or $1,020 if you’re not.
  • You’ll learn everything from researching and planning sales to handling problems and managing your accounts.

The course covers all parts of sales. It starts with research and planning. Then it covers talking to customers and closing deals in the middle stages. You’ll get good at solving problems, giving great sales presentations, and handling customer accounts well. It’s basically an all-in-one resource for anyone in inside sales


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