Jobs, Salaries

Highest Paying Jobs in Sales

Team working on computer with headset

It takes the right balance of charisma and professional savvy to make it in sales. For those who know their subject matter, and are skilled in the gift of gab, sales can be a lucrative and satisfying career.

Plus, their customers feel the fit too: when you find that right sales professional who can get you what you need at the right price while making you feel totally taken care of, you never want to lose that connection.

Finding your groove as a sales professional is all about building productive relationships and tending them careful and regularly. Those who do this well are irreplaceable to their client base.

Salaries for those who work in sales tend to be uniquely complex. Often a base compensation is augmented with a commission that is a percentage of the sales that these professionals bring in.  Glassdoor data reveals that when it comes to careers in account and corporate sales, for example, base salary, on average accounts for 67% of sales professionals’ total pay, while commission accounts for around 32%. These figures differ depending on the company and industry.

If you’ve got the personality and the prowess to make it in sales, these hot jobs are among the highest paying jobs in sales.

What Kind of Sales Job is Right for You?

Sales engineer

Glassdoor salary range: $68,000-$185,000

This is a great gig that earned a spot on Glassdoor’s Top 20 Jobs with the Highest Satisfaction, but a role as a sales engineer doesn’t come easy.  Pros who earn this position need technical experience and usually a bachelor’s degree in engineering, so that they can advise their clients about what they need to purchase to keep their factories, plants and labs functioning optimally. Because these pros are highly credentialed, theirs are among the sales jobs that make the most money.  

Software sales rep

Glassdoor salary range: $50,000-$141,000

It takes technical expertise to do this job. Sales professionals are usually required to have a relevant bachelor’s degree, coupled with manufacturer’s certifications.


Glassdoor salary range: $27,000-$111,000

Each state has slightly different procedures that govern real estate transactions; therefore, the processes for earning a real estate license may differ, slightly, based on your region. To qualify to do this job, most incoming recruits need to take courses, and spend some time learning the basics by working under the guidance of an established agent before they learn their market and begin their solo operation.

Pharmaceutical sales

Glassdoor salary range:  $52,000-$84,000

Professionals who do this job are generally required to have a bachelor’s degree; the area of focus can be flexible. Business, marketing or science degrees are all a good fit. Some institutions offer a degree in pharmaceutical science, another fitting degree for this role. Those who work in this job educate medical professionals on new medications, connecting care providers with newest industry updates.

Major gifts officer

Glassdoor salary range: $45,000-$95,000

These professionals tend to be among the highest paid pros in the non-profit sector, because they know how to bring in the cash. Major gifts officers sell the mission of their institution to current and prospective donors who are looking to use their resources to make a difference. Candidates typically need a bachelor’s degree, plus fundraising experience to do this job.

A stellar perk that accompanies an MGO role is working for interesting non-profit employers like museums, zoos, hospitals and universities.   

Medical device sales rep

Glassdoor salary range: $38,000-$87,000

This role is similar to that of a pharmaceutical rep, but rather than advising about advances in new medications, these pros pedal new devices, appliances and technologies that improve medical practices and operations. To qualify to do this job, candidates usually need a bachelor’s degree in business, marketing or science.  


Glassdoor salary range: $37,000-$77,000

Yes, recruiting is a sales job. Recruiters sell candidates on the idea of applying to their various open positions, and they sell employers on the idea of hiring their various candidates. Recruiters can work for a recruiting firm or they can work as a recruiter for a company that has routine and robust hiring needs, such as a law firm. Recruiters typically need a bachelor’s degree in human resources, or a related field.

Sales Jobs Career Advice

Sales jobs are fun, engaging and lucrative for those who earn a role in a top sales field. If you have that blend of credentials and charisma that yields fit for sales pros, you stand to be well-rewarded for your work.  Learn More

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