What Qualities Should a Sales Associate Have?


For many businesses, sales associates are essential. They are the people who sell products to customers and enable businesses to make money. From the customers' point of view, sales associates help them make the right purchase. Sales associates ensure products are suitable, available and delivered on time.

Friendly and Polite

  • Sales associates should be friendly and polite. If they work in retail stores, they should greet customers. They should listen to what customers want and connect with them. Faced with courteous sales associates, customers feel relaxed and more willing to make purchases. Businesses therefore benefit from their sales associates' friendly and polite attitudes because their sales increase. What's more, customers are more likely to return to stores when they know the sales associates have good manners.


  • Customers value honesty in sales associates. Customers are uncomfortable with sales associates who are not open with them. They're reluctant to make purchases because they feel the sales associates are wasting their time and not treating them with respect. Customers want sales associates to be honest about products and show integrity when it comes to arranging deliveries and installations. For example, customers like sales associates to tell them if there are likely to be delays with deliveries and why.

Product Knowledge

  • Customers often enter stores with at least one or two questions about products. Sales associates must have sufficient product knowledge to answer these questions. This means that sales associates must be prepared to learn about products and speak about them in a competent manner. If there are gaps in sales associates' knowledge, most customers don't mind. Associates should be honest about the extent of their knowledge and make an effort to find out what customers want to know.

Team Player

  • Sales associates work on their own when dealing with customers. Businesses require their associates to be team players, however. They expect them to help out with audits and inventory checks. They want them to be flexible about working at weekends, in the evenings and on holidays. They expect them to assist their co-workers to arrange product displays and to keep a store neat and clean. At the same time, sales associates must show initiative and work under minimal supervision. This refers not just to dealing with customers but also to handling payments and sales records.

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