The LinkedIn State of Sales Infographic: Some Numbers to Help You Hit Yours

April 11, 2019

LinkedIn State of Sales

LinkedIn’s third annual State of Sales report surveyed thousands of decision makers and salespeople to pinpoint how sales is changing. The following infographic, “The State of Sales: Some Numbers to Help You Hit Yours,” summarizes some of the key trends impacting the sales profession in the United States.

Check out the infographic for the statistics that reveal just how much sales in changing in the areas of technology, personalization, sales and marketing alignment, millennial influence, and trust.

It’s no secret that a strong sales team is crucial to the success of most companies. In the aggregate, companies spend billions to ensure their sales teams are the best they can be. Businesses spend $800 billion annually on incentives to retain their best salespeople. Additionally, companies spend $15 billion on training their sales staff.

But the way sales works is changing with the aging of the Baby Boom generation. By next year, almost 50 percent of the workforce will be Millennials, and those Millennials are changing the procurement process from both sides, as salespeople and as decision makers or as members of the buying committee (which, by the way, now comprises an average of 6.8 people).

Here are five crucial ways that sales is changing, according to LinkedIn’s State of Sales report.  

Technology gives salespeople an advantage.

  • 73% of salespeople use technology to close more deals.
  • Adoption of CRM technology has grown by 113%, more than doubling since 2016.
  • 89% of top sales performers say networking platforms are “very important” or “important.”
  • 70% of sales professionals say they’re most active on LinkedIn for business purposes.

Deploy the capability to personalize interactions with prospects.

  • 93% of buyers are more likely to engage if a salesperson provides personalized communications.
  • 79% of buyers won’t engage with sales professionals who lack knowledge of their company.

Marketing and sales orchestration helps close deals.

  • Top sales pros are 13% more likely to engage closely with marketing.
  • 64% of sales pros say leads from marketing are “excellent” or “good.”
  • 89% of decision makers say consistent messages from sales and marketing is important.

Millennial sales pros are different: They engage more closely with marketing.

  • Millennials salespeople are 23% more likely than GenXers to say they work “very closely” with the marketing epartment. They are 73% more likely than Baby Boomers to work “very closely” with marketing.
  • 19% of Millennials exceeded their sales targets by more than 50%. Just 13% of GenXers and Baby Boomers did.

Trust is essential (well, maybe that hasn’t changed).

  • 51% of decision makers rank trust as the No. 1 attribute they want in a salesperson.
  • Virtually 100% of sales professional say trust if “very important” or “important” to winning new business.
  • 88% of decision makers say sales pros are a “trusted partner.”

Learn more. Download the full 2018 State of Sales Report.