The world of sales has changed a lot in the last couple of decades. With the internet at their disposal, customers can find and compare product prices easier than ever before. The internet also gave us access to plenty of user-generated content like peer reviews and referrals.
The sales industry has come to a turning point in the age of the customer, and our sales statistics are here to help you understand why that is. One of the key reasons for sales success is learning how to create your strategy from available data.
Let’s take a closer look at these statistics that we compiled for you.
Most Intriguing Sales Facts (Editor's Choice)
- Barely 2% of cold calls result in a meeting.
- 46% of salespeople didn’t intend to be a part of the sales industry.
- Sales professionals spend 34% of their time selling.
- Almost 6 in 10 buyers want to discuss pricing on the first call.
- Hardly 24% of sales emails are opened.
- Sales stats show that 49.2% of ecommerce sales in 2020 are made through mobile devices.
Universal Sales Statistics in 2020
1. 75% of companies say that closing more deals is ranked as a top priority.
This is where sales coaches earn their paychecks. If the strategy is successfully implemented, the effects are improved sales, better selling skills, greater knowledge about the products, and more. Closing more deals will continue to be a priority for a long time. The emphasis is placed on social selling, tech, and investment in customer relationship management.
2. According to sales statistics, around 60% of salespeople believe that selling is more challenging than before.
Different reasons, such as changing customer needs and fierce competition, are partially responsible for this. Still, experts also suggest that careful use of sales technology can be a game-changer.
3. 64% of sales departments use CRM software.
One of the sales trends that have shown a great impact is CRM software. It enables managing all of the company’s relationships and interactions with customers and potential customers. The good news is that the overall use of this technology among sales agents has increased over the last couple of years.
4. Between 4% and 18% of sales calls result in a meeting.
Scheduling a meeting is one of the hardest challenges that sales agents face. Phone sales statistics indicate that sales reps need to have 20 conversations to schedule just one or two appointments.
5. Just 13% of customers believe a salesperson can recognize their needs.
A salesperson should always have customers’ needs in mind. It’s always about them and meeting their requirements. Get that right, and you’ll close more deals.
6. Sales training statistics show that 55% of people who make a living through sales don’t have the right skills.
It’s usually not about a lack of talent, but it’s about most sales organizations’ inability to provide their sales reps with the right tools and training to be successful. The defined sales process, sharing best practices, and managers to coach sales reps are just some of the numerous things that companies need to improve.
7. Around 13% of all the jobs in the US are full-time sales positions.
Nowadays, salespeople are more important than ever. The sales profession has changed, and it’s nothing like the negative stereotypes of the past. If sales agents are smart, agile, and continue to develop their skills, they should have a bright future ahead.
Fascinating Online Sales Statistics
8. 75% of people shop online at least once a month.
This percentage shows that online shopping has become a standard activity among buyers. Internet sales statistics indicate that 20% of people shop online at least once a week, and another 24% shop online once every two weeks.
9. 49.2% of ecommerce sales in 2020 are made through mobile devices, as sales statistics indicate.
With the internet being an important part of our everyday lives and offering almost endless possibilities, it’s not surprising that so many people use their phones and other mobile devices to shop. Over the last four years, we’ve seen a 15% increase. Experts predict that purchases made through mobile devices will rise to 53.9% by 2021.
10. Amazon rakes in 47% of all US ecommerce sales in 2020.
Although Amazon has received a considerable amount of criticism, its success hasn’t stopped growing over the past few years. Amazon sales statistics showed that the company went from 34% of US ecommerce sales in 2016 to 47% in 2020. According to estimates, Amazon will account for 50% of ecommerce sales by 2021.
11. There are 2 billion daily transactions on eBay.
With 180 million active buyers, eBay is the second ecommerce platform according to the time spent on the site as of 2018. In 2019, eBay sales statistics reported that the company generated more than $10 billion in revenue. It was designed to be a real peer-to-peer online marketplace and connect buyers with online sellers.
B2B Sales Statistics
12. B2B ecommerce is expected to generate up to $1.8 trillion by 2023 in the US.
This means that B2B ecommerce sales will account for 17% of total B2B sales. B2B ecommerce is growing very fast. Many factors influence growth, but the demand for high-quality products is definitely one of the biggest. New businesses will continue to enter the B2B market. With the application of new sales trends, there will be more competition, customer behavior will change, and companies will be forced to implement new technologies to improve the existing B2B customer experience.
13. 27% of salespeople say that cold calling is still effective.
Cold calling is where sales calls begin. Although B2B cold calling statistics indicate that cold calling is almost 90% ineffective, some executives say they still rely on calls from sales reps in the earliest phases of project planning. That’s because sales reps talk with lots of customers and have identified ways to solve problems or come up with new ideas.
14. According to sales agent stats, 63% of sales reps say that cold calling is the worst part of the job.
Cold calling can be challenging because it can bring out the worst in people. The important thing to remember is that those who receive calls don’t have anything against sales reps, but they react negatively to the whole situation.
15. 58% of customers prefer talking about pricing on the very first sales call.
Having the right information can be very helpful when making sales calls. Buyers prefer not to waste time, but instead, they want to get useful answers to the most important questions.
16. 84% of B2B buyers make a decision based on a referral.
An opinion from a friend or adviser that a company is doing a good job can greatly influence customers’ decisions when making a purchase. For this to happen, great customer service is necessary even after the sale is complete. This shows how important social selling is.
Another 64% of B2B customers will read two to five pieces of content before making a purchasing decision.
Face to Face Sales Statistics
17. The door-to-door selling industry in the US is worth $28.6 billion.
One of the important aspects of outside sales is good old door-to-door selling. In 2011, it was declared as one of the top 10 dying professions. Much to everybody’s surprise, door-to-door sales statistics show that this type of selling has recorded a staggering $7.7 billion increase in the last decade.
18. 75% of buyers have no desire to meet face to face.
Technology and the internet are mostly responsible for this. Therefore, it’s not surprising that the inside sales have seen much faster growth than outside sales. Both types of sales have benefits in their own way, and combining them would be most beneficial for any business.
19. Sales stats specify that 52.8% of the salesforce in the US are involved in outside sales.
If you are an outside sales agent, that means that you focus on face-to-face selling or direct sales. A company’s decision to implement outside or inside sales (or both) largely depends on its needs and a sales model.
Sales Statistics by Industry
20. In the US, the total number of new cars sold in January 2020 was 1,144,279.
US car sales statistics show that car sales are a big part of consumer expenditure and are among the most important contributors to annual economic growth.
21. Tesla alone has sold close to 320,000 units in the period between January–September 2020.
Around 139,000 of those sales were recorded in the third quarter of the year.
Tesla sales are actually on track to beat last year’s numbers, as there were between 367,000 and 368,000 units sold in the entire 2019, according to statistics.
22. In 2018, 40.2 million used cars were sold in the US.
According to data, the number of new sold cars has never exceeded the number of used vehicles sold during the same reference period. Used car sales statistics by state reported that California is ranked number one with 896,007 cars sold in 2018. Florida is ranked second with 511,530 car sales, and Texas is third with 450,825 car sales.
23. Electric cars represent just a little under 2% of the US market and 2.2% worldwide.
Electric vehicle sales statistics showed that 2 million electric cars were sold in 2018. Despite the growth in sales and manufacturing, only 1 in 250 cars on the road is electric.
24. General Motors has sold 589,295 trucks to this date in 2020.
After being the most popular pickup truck in the US for 43 years, Ford’s F-Series has taken second place (589,034).
Pickup truck sales were affected by the pandemic as much as other industries, according to the latest numbers and statistics.
GM saw a 2.9% decrease in sales in the third quarter this year compared to 2019.
25. Apple sold $2.2 billion worth of iPhones in November 2018.
According to Apple iPhone sales statistics, the tech giant sold $2 billion worth of iPhones in 2017. A year later, the annual sales reached $2.2 billion. Although the increase hasn’t been that significant, it’s clear that Apple’s iPhone is growing in popularity by the year.
26. The video game industry generated $131 billion in 2018.
2018 was a very successful year for the gaming industry. The income generated from mobile games surpassed the profit made from both PC and console games. Video game sales statistics show that 2.2 billion gamers spent $109 billion in 2017. Experts predict that the video game market will rise to become a $300 billion industry by 2025.
27. US movie ticket sales dropped by almost 5% in 2019.
Online streaming is what led movie ticket sales to drop in 2019. The 2019 sum was a bit higher than the $1.2 billion recorded in 2017. Movie ticket sales statistics show that 2017 and 2019 were the worst years for movie ticket sales since 1995.
The average price of the ticket was $9.37 in the last quarter of 2019, which is almost 4% higher than the previous year. However, if we consider the entire 2019, the price was less than 1% up.
28. According to book sales statistics, 689.45 million copies of printed books were sold in 2019 in the US.
It’s no secret that, because of the internet, the traditional media is no longer doing well as it once did, and printed newspapers and magazines are particularly suffering. Still, printed book sales statistics by year reveal that there has been a significant improvement since 2012 and 2016. Looking back, 2005 through 2010 were the most prosperous for book sales, reaching around 700 million copies per year.
29. 335.7 million e-books were sold in the United States in 2019.
Technology and smartphones have massively changed everything in consumers’ lives, even the way they read books. E-book sales are difficult to follow. The problem is the lack of available data from major companies such as Amazon, smaller publishers excluded from e-book sales statistics, and other reasons like the different methods researchers use to track and assess the market.
30. Comic books and graphic novels saw a rise in sales by up to 11% in 2019.
Record-breaking $1.21 billion worth of comics and graphic novels were sold across the US and Canada last year. This is an 11% improvement from 2018. Not only that, but comic book sales statistics also report a 5% rise in sales for traditional, periodical comic books. This growth is credited to an increased interest in graphic novels, especially the ones designed for younger audiences. The bad news, however, is that the growth in sales is unlikely to continue in 2020. Most stores were forced to close due to COVID-19.
31. Vinyl sales jumped by 12% in 2018.
Vinyl record sales statistics reported 9.7 million album sales in 2018. That’s roughly 12% more than 8.6 million in 2017. Vinyl album sales accounted for 13.7% of all physical sales, which was an increase from 10% in 2017 and 8% in 2016, respectively.
32. In 2018, the global pharmaceutical market made $1.2 trillion.
Experts say the market is expected to generate $1.5 trillion by 2023, with a growing rate of 4–5%. The US has the biggest pharmaceutical market in the world. Pharmaceutical sales statistics show that sales of drugs in the US hold 47% of the global market. The pharmaceutical industry has some of the highest profits in the world, with the average net profit margins being 12.5% to 14%. Some pharmaceutical companies reported profit margins of an incredible 40%.
33. There are 857 million civilian-owned guns in the world, and people in America own almost half of them (46%).
Gun sales statistics show a 32% increase in worldwide sales compared to the previous decade. Gun stores across the US are no exception, as they are generating record sales of weapons and ammunition.
What Can We Learn From These Sales Statistics
The sales industry has made some drastic changes to keep up with modern times. Technology and the internet play a big part, as these figures show. While numbers might not tell the whole story, they surely reveal enough. Possessing the right knowledge is vital, but providing your team with the necessary tools to outperform your competition is even more crucial.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
On average, it takes eight follow-up calls to make a sale, as phone call statistics show. Maybe this is all due to many sales reps still relying on impersonal voicemails, which doesn’t quite work well in the age of high customer experience expectations. To put things into perspective, only 1 in 59 random calls resulted in an appointment. Cold calling is still preferred by 49% of buyers as the first point of contact.
Not so long ago, there were 18 million people in sales in the US. Experts predicted that by 2020 there would be only 3 million sales reps. What is true about this prediction is that the number already started to decline. According to the latest salesforce statistics, there are around 14,371,410 people in sales.
For example, if a salesperson closed 10 out of 40 deals, then the closing ratio would be 25%. Sales closing statistics report that world-class companies close 30% of sales, while average companies close around 20%.
If you want to know what is the close rate by industry, here are some examples:
- Biotechnology industry close rate: 15%
- Business and industrial industry close rate: 27%
- Computer software industry close rate: 22%
- Computers and electronics industry close rate: 23%
- Finance industry close rate: 19%
On average, around 60% of sales reps meet the quota. But, by the end of this year, around 57% of sales reps are expected to miss the quota. Sales teams who are data-driven always outperform non-data-driven sales teams by a mile. As a matter of fact, reps who are supposed to perform at or above quota are 1.6 times more likely to be data-driven. Nonetheless, only 33% of sales leaders are looking to use data analysis as their primary means of running their sales playbook.
There are significantly more pass-through businesses than C-corps, with corporations earning the largest share of total gross receipts. Corporations account for 5% of businesses but earn 62% of revenues. Out of $30.9 trillion in total business receipts, corporations earned 62% in 2011. American retail corporation Walmart has been holding the top spot for the world’s largest company by revenue since 2014.
It all depends on the business, but there’s a general notion that 80% of the sales teams should be able to meet their quota. If that’s not the case, sales leaders should consider that sales quota might not be realistic and recalculate it to set more attainable goals. The three major types of quotas are volume-based, profit-based, and combination quotas.
The simple answer to this question is: more than people think. According to sales statistics, it takes eight touches on average to schedule a meeting, but top sales performers take an average of five touches only. It depends on the value you can offer to your customers. Top performers have better skills such as messaging, targeting, and value offering. That can transform prospects into qualified leads or outright sales faster. In the end, It’s all about recognizing what your customer wants and needs and delivering it faster and better than others.