8 Sales Incentive DOs and DON’Ts

sales incentive tips

Being a sales leader is no easy task. You’ve got reports to pull, one-on-ones to schedule, vendors to evaluate, customers to talk to and of course — a team to motivate.

We can help with the motivate part. To get the most out of your team and use rewards effectively as possible, check out what to focus on and what to avoid while using sales incentives.


Sales Incentive DOs:

Do pay attention to the group you are incentivizing.
Even though you may find a reward to be a good idea, doesn’t mean the entire group agrees. For example, if you need to motivate millennials, try using tangible ’90s gear as a nostalgic sales incentive instead of offering up a little extra cash to go in the retirement fund.

Do keep incentives top of mind for sales reps.
Having contest visibility and using reminders of sales incentives up for grabs will keep your team working hard toward the reward. Send out a quick email with GIFs related to the incentive so your reps don’t forget what they can earn. Also give them access to performance data, so they can see if they’re on track to goals.

Do offer sales incentives habitually.
“Didn’t get this week’s incentive? Don’t worry, you can try again on Monday!” Incentivizing your team on a regular basis will keep salespeople looking forward to another try the next time around.

Do use collaboration.
Team incentives can amplify motivation. Make sure to switch up the squads (sales duos are one great option), so you can get different people working together, and build culture while you’re at it.


Sales Incentive DON’Ts:

Don’t reward the wrong things.
Make sure sales incentives are focused around key performance indicators and that you are encouraging the activities that matter most in your company’s selling process.

Don’t feel like you need to spend a ton of money.
There are plenty of cheap sales incentives out there that work just as good, or better, as expensive ideas. The concept of winning a reward is more exciting than the price of a prize. (Download 102 inexpensive ideas here.)

Don’t just use cash as an incentive.
You can achieve the same goal without throwing out stacks on stacks. Research actually shows that tangible incentives outside of cash tend to be more motivating.

Don’t forget to deliver the incentive — and fast!
Seems like an obvious tip, but a common mistake with sales incentives is forgetting to give out the prize in a timely fashion. The whole point of incentives is to reward and reinforce positive behavior, so make sure to hand out the prize right after that behavior happens.

These DOs and DON’Ts are just the start, but they could be exactly what your team needs to take motivation to the next level.


8 Sales Incentive DOs and DON'Ts
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8 Sales Incentive DOs and DON'Ts
Take sales motivation to the next level with these 8 best practices for sales incentives.
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