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Building Effective Sales Teams in the Start-up CPG World

Do you know only 35% of businesses in the world have survived in the past 10 years? One particular reason behind this is the lack of converting potential customers into definitive sales. Do you want to fall in that percentage? When it comes to achieving success in your CPG business, hiring the right sales team […]

Do you know only 35% of businesses in the world have survived in the past 10 years? One particular reason behind this is the lack of converting potential customers into definitive sales. Do you want to fall in that percentage?

When it comes to achieving success in your CPG business, hiring the right sales team is very crucial. This doesn’t mean hiring a couple of skilled talents. Instead, you’ll need to have access to the right tools and a team that can collaborate and bring customers to you.

So, how do you put together a dream sales team for your CPG business? In this post, you will learn how to build a team that will help your startup soar. Ready to find out how? Let’s jump right in!

Understanding the Startup CPG Landscape

With the rise of technological advancement, CPG startups have gained profitable opportunities. For example, CPG start-ups have access to social media stores, micro-influencers advertising, and omni-sellers.

However, there are also challenges, such as increasing slotting prices in retail stores and the high cost of direct-to-consumer delivery.

At the heart of every CPG business, there’s the sales team. Through market research, these dedicated workers ensure your products reach your customers. They do so by using their skills to convert potential customers into sales.

Key Components of an Effective Sales Team 

A clear structure, talented workers, and an understanding of the business make an effective sales team. More specifically, your team members must know their roles and who to report to. For that, they must be very good in the following skills:

  • Communication
  • Negotiation 
  • Persuasion 
  • Active Listening 
  • Self-Motivation

Along with these skills, your sales team needs to understand your goals, the products, and the customers’ pain points. This will allow them to come up with better solutions that will turn customers’ problems into sales opportunities. 

Recruiting Top Sales Talent 

When you’re hiring, you should create a job description that includes competitive compensation. To avoid mistakes in hiring, use clear language that speaks to the work culture you’re trying to build. You should also post this job on social media platforms, recruitment agencies, career fairs, or even utilize employee referrals. 

Then, you can process these applications via applicant tracking systems, video interviews, and problem-solving skill tests. This will help you tackle one of the challenges of hiring: narrowing down your choices to the most skilled applicants. 

Alternatively, you could use fractional talent. Unlike full-time workers, they work 5 – 30 hours a week. As a start-up, this gives you access to their expertise and labor at a lower cost. 

Training and Development 

Once you’ve hired promising talent, you’ll need to assimilate them with an on-board process. However, initial training isn’t enough; providing ongoing training to your team is also crucial. This will ensure that they perform well, adapt to the changing market, and stay on the same page as the rest of the team. 

Building a Collaborative Sales Culture 

As a startup, you have the unique opportunity to instill a culture of cooperation from the outset. To attain this culture, your sales team needs to: 

  • Solve problems together 
  • Resolve conflicts among talents 
  • Nurture relationships among members 
  • Reward and recognize collaboration
  • Meet often to ensure talents align with company goals 

Leveraging Technology 

Now that you have a team working cohesively, you can further improve performance with technology and automation. This allows you to streamline processes. Typically, you can use Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Systems to compile data on customers. Then, your team will use the data to approach customers. Furthermore, you can use machine learning models for data analytics. The insights these models offer may even improve your team’s performance. 

Measuring Sales Performance 

Using Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to monitor the performance of your sales team ensures that you maximize the benefits of the commission package you’ve established. You can use these benchmarks to monitor your team’s performance and goal alignment. Then, you can use the results to adjust your resource distribution, make decisions, verify you’re meeting targets, and identify issues. 

These KPIs should fit your goals, be measurable, and make sense of the strategy you’re using. Therefore, each company will have its own set of unique KPIs tailored to its goals. Nonetheless, here are some common KPIs you can begin with: 

  • Conversion Rate 
  • Revenue 
  • Retention Rate 
  • Sales Growth 
  • Customer Lifetime Value 


Building a strong sales team is critical to making your start-up CPG business successful. While hiring, it is important to focus on finding the right mix of talent that works well together and understands your products deeply. From using smart hiring strategies like job descriptions and interviews to training your team continuously and using technology to boost their performance, do everything carefully. Besides, creating a culture where everyone works together and supports each other is also crucial. One last thing is don’t forget to measure how well your team is doing with clear goals and benchmarks so you can keep improving. Ultimately, with the right team and strategies, your business can grow and succeed in the competitive CPG market.

About the Author

This article was created by our trusted partner, IdealRev. The company specializes in finding top talents to grow your business faster for a fraction of the cost.

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