Professional Selling Certificate by Florida State University

The most comprehensive online sales training backed by The Sales Institute at Florida State University
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  • Lectures 122
  • Contents Video: 4.5 hours
    Other: 1.5 hours
  • Skill Level All Levels
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
    30 day money back guarantee!
    Available on iOS and Android
    Certificate of Completion
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About This Course

Published 1/2015 English

Course Description

The most comprehensive online sales training course backed by proven methods and extensive research

Develop skills including sales prospecting, understanding buyer behavior, and account management, and earn a formal certificate in Professional Sales from Florida State University – the leading academic institution in the field of sales education.

Sales scripts, tricks, and shortcuts are a thing of the past. Superficial sales gimmicks no longer work with today's informed buyer. If you want to see a real improvement in your sales results, you must build lasting skills and knowledge that form the basis of long-term sales performance.

This course will provide you with just that. You will build timeless sales skills like the ability to pain-point buyer problems (consultative selling) as well as learn new age sales concepts including social selling - using social media to generate sales leads and win more business.

The concepts you will learn in this course are tested and proven. We've developed the material in partnership with top sales professors and experienced sales executives from different industries.

Here is an overview of the course experience:

  • Short 3-5 minute videos cover the big ideas and feature our experts (top professors, executives, and consultants). There are over 100 videos. See the complete list below.
  • Printable tip sheets are included with most videos and can be used as reminders of the key concepts
  • Tools are practical worksheets and guides that let you put the ideas into immediate action in the real world
  • Short review quizzes help you check your progress as you advance through the program

Our sales training programs have helped thousands of sales professionals hone their sales skills – from the Fortune 500 to fast growing start-ups.

All users completing the course will have the opportunity to earn a certificate in Professional Sales from the Sales Institute at Florida State University

What are the requirements?

  • Basic business knowledge
  • Basic understanding of how business to business sales works
  • Laptop, computer or tablet

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Increase the number of sales opportunities you’re pursuing
  • Deliver meaningful insights to your prospects that compel them to buy
  • Manage those opportunities more strategically to close
  • Build stronger relationships with your best customers
  • Improve your overall sales results

What is the target audience?

  • Sales professionals looking to improve their sales results
  • New sales professionals or career changers looking to ramp their performance
  • All customer facing roles (marketing, customer service, product, etc.) looking for insights into modern sales methods
  • Sales management looking for approaches to help improve the performance of their team

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee.

Forever yours.
Lifetime access.

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android.

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion.


Section 1: Understanding Your Buyer

How much would you pay to be able to read your prospect's mind? Well we share what the best sales reps know about tapping into the key psychological reasons why people buy and what you can do as a rep to activate those triggers.


Your prospects are bombarded with information on a daily basis. Are your selling efforts making it easier or harder for your prospects and clients to make a decision?


Have you ever wished you had special insight into the brain of your prospect or customer? How do they really make decisions? What communication approach resonates best? The Social Style Index can provide you with just that sort of insider intelligence. Find out more about the four common buyer social styles.


Knowing the social style of a prospect can be a powerful tool as reps move through the buying process. But asking potential buyers to complete a personality test isn't a very practical strategy. Learn how to quickly gather clues to someone's social style using basic observation and listening skills.


Each personality on the Social Style Index likes to be sold to differently. Learn how to properly engage each personality and what pitfalls to avoid.

3 pages

This is your opportunity to learn more about yourself. Rate yourself across various personal style characteristics - are you more serious, or more lighthearted? - and discover your Social Style.


Uncovering what is motivating your prospect to make a change is crucial. Often times this is easier said than done as your client will not always openly share their motivations.


Customer's buying processes has never been more complex. Understanding the buyer center will help put yourself in their shoes and allow you to develop a plan of action to win them over.


In the recent economic downturn, companies turned over every stone in search of costs to take out of their business. One of the first places companies usually look for cost savings is in supplier related costs.


We often get so focused on our own selling process that we fail to appreciate the complex activities taking place on the buyer's side of the table. Track your buyer's journey and adapt your strategies to match.

Tip Sheet: Buyer's Journey
1 page

Today we have a better understanding of how people make decisions. That is thanks to a emerging science of human decision making.

Understanding Your Buyer Quiz
8 questions
Section 2: Generating New Opportunities

Finding new customers can range from cold calling to newer Internet techniques like social networking. Watch this video to learn all about effective lead generation.


Here are 3 tips that will help you increase your sales opportunities.


Let's bust some of the most popular prospecting myths and lay down some new thinking on what makes prospecting successful in today's environment.


We've busted the myths, now it's time to let you in on some secrets. We provide a methodology that takes you step by step through the lead generating process to ensure your funnel never goes dry.

Tool: Lead Pipeline
1 page

The sales funnel is one of the most fundamental tools any rep needs to master. Learn sales funnel basics and how to leverage it to improve your qualification activities.

Tip Sheet: Finding the Best Leads
1 page

As a tool for tracking and predicting your sales success, a well-optimized sales funnel can be invaluable for establishing reliable sales projections.


What does a healthy pipeline look like? We'll explain a simple and easy way to analyze your pipeline so you can make changes in your action to address issues before they hit.

Tip Sheet: Diagnosing Your Pipeline
1 page

The dreaded cold call. Nothing strikes more fear and loathing in sales professionals than prospecting via the telephone. Learn some tips to improve your cold calling effectiveness.

Tip Sheet: Cold Calling
1 page

Sooner versus later you'll learn the power of the gatekeeper. Learn strategies for not letting this person stop your selling efforts.


Learn the four steps for conducting a research or mapping call, a simple approach that can generate the referral you need to turn your cold call into a warm call.


Getting someone's attention in a cold calling situation is tough. Here are three techniques to use to improve your chances of connecting during that first sales encounter.


Even experienced reps can be their own worst enemy when it comes to prospecting by phone. Check yourself against five self-defeating beliefs.


There are many new lead generation tools and strategies available to sales professionals today. But nothing beats the simple power of a personal referral. There are five key things to know about this approach.

Building Your Wish List of Referrals
Tool: Referral Sources
1 page
Tip Sheet: Asking for Referrals
1 page

Having a strong center of influence is crucial in being successful in sales. Here are a few tips you can follow to help build and strengthen your center of influence:


They say networking is vital but nobody explains how to network. How to network is the real question. So why aren’t there any good resources on the nitty gritty of how to network? And how to network in a way that doesn’t feel sleazy?


Don't underestimate the importance of your LinkedIn profile. Follow these steps to make sure yours is optimized to drive prospective buyers to you.


Groups are more than an interesting community feature of LinkedIn. Discover how to use this feature to understand your buyer and fuel your lead generation activities.


LinkedIn's Company Pages give you immediate access to hot prospects. Learn how to use this free feature to generate quality leads.


No longer just a trend, social media is now an established and important part of the selling landscape. Take advantage of the benefits that social media offers to today's reps.


Social media provides powerful new ways to increase your network and potential selling opportunities.

1 page

Your LinkedIn profile is a snapshot of the brand you are sharing with the world. It is important that your profile is professional and polished.

13 questions

Ready to test your knowledge?

Section 3: Sales Planning and Approach

Planning and preparation are two of the most important skills for sales professionals. Learn tips to make your next sales meeting successful.


Have you done everything you can to prepare for that next sales call? Taking the time to develop a solid meeting plan can make all the difference.


Success in sales is less about emotion and more about thoughtful execution. Are you investing the right about of time and energy so you're executing to your fullest?


Many sales roles require reps to make a set number of calls or meetings each day, week and month. The biggest mistake we see is that sales reps don’t have a real plan when approaching these meetings.


The first 5-10 minutes of a sales conversation can be a stressful and anxious experience for most reps. Improve your focus and effectiveness by learning some simple tips to getting your sales calls off to the right start.

Tip Sheet: Starting a Sales Conversation
1 page

Your prospects are busier and more distracted than ever before. Avoid sounding like every other sales person on the phone. And be quick about it.

Sales Planning and Approach Quiz
6 questions
Section 4: Uncovering Needs & Opportunities

Good sales professionals are like a doctor diagnosing a patient's illness. Learn the importance of uncovering your customer’s needs through selling slowly and effective questioning.


Learn more about GOALS, a simple but structured model of questioning that helps you discover your customer's needs, issues and opportunities.


General Condition Questions get you started in your exploration of a customer's current situation.


Obstacles, Opportunities and Outlay Questions help you to uncover the issues and challenges facing your customer as well as their cost.


Accomplishment Questions are a big part of the discovery process because they help you understand your customer's ideal situation and how your products or services might help them reach their goals.


Leverage Questions disrupt your customer's current thinking, allowing them to see things in a new light.


Summary and Solution Questions are the last question type in the GOALS model. These questions provide the transition to the presentation phase of the sales process.


Take a look at a GOALS-based discovery approach in action as this rep tries to uncover the prospect's needs and issues. With this insight, the rep then positions his product as a solution to address these discovered needs.

Tool: GOALS Model
1 page

Conversations that have an impact are fundamentally about effectively uncovering the objectives of the customer – their motivation.

Uncovering Needs & Opportunities Quiz
8 questions
Section 5: Presenting with Impact

Let's be honest, it's pretty easy to spout off a long list of product features. But, effective sales people know the importance of linking product features to the needs of their prospects. The FAB framework can help make sure you present your products or services in a way that really matters to your buyer.


Sales people can make some pretty unbelievable claims about their products and services. Without the right support, those claims are in fact unbelievable in the eyes of your prospective buyer. Arm yourself with the right materials so you can make your product claims with greater credibility.


Benefits minus cost. It's the simple equation customers use to determine value. Unfortunately, most reps don't pay enough attention to the benefits side of the ledger and are too quick to focus on cost. Don't get caught in the downward spiral of discounting that inevitably comes from a cost-based sales strategy.


Tired of playing the pricing game? Strengthen the value proposition of your products and services by looking beyond the surface benefits of what you sell. Use a simple framework to help you identify and communicate the broader value you can bring to your customers.


As most experienced sales reps have learned, the language of selling has changed dramatically.


Learn more about TALE, a framework that pulls all of the elements of an effective presentation together.


The Talking Points stage in the TALE model is where you think through what you are trying to convey to the customer.


Being able to determine the style of your audience and what that means to your presentation is crucial to delivering an effective presentation.


The Layout stage of developing a presentation is where you build a blueprint for the key elements of the presentation.


The Experiment stage of the TALE Model highlights the importance of practicing and testing your presentation before you get in front of a prospect.

Tool: TALE Model
1 page

Storytelling is one of the most powerful techniques we have as humans to communicate and motivate. Using stories to make a connection with a prospect can greatly increase your ability to close deals. We will show you the difference between a fact based product presentation and one that tells a story.


There's a tendency for salespeople to concentrate on logic because they believe emotions are too flaky to have any real importance on a buying decision.


We're bombarded with figures and facts from the ticket on every news or sports station to the constant barrage of texts, emails and calls. The one thing that continues to cut through all the noise in our lives is stories. In this Sales Boost we dive into how stories can be used to during your next sales call to provide context to your solution and connect the buyers emotions.

Tool: Story Matrix
1 page
1 page

Capture your best stories using the attached tool

Presenting with Impact Quiz
9 questions
Section 6: Overcoming Objectives and Closing

Foot-in-mouth. Every sales rep has done it. One of the reason this happens is we're too quick to respond to objections. We do so before we really understand and clarify the objection. We make assumptions and jump on the quickest response we now. Too often, we get it end up addressing the wrong issue.


Handle the toughest objections with confidence and ease using this 3 step approach. Most sales rep misstep because they jump right into responding without clarifying or showing empathy to the prospect. Be more disciplined in how you respond and close more deals today.

Tip Sheet: 3 Steps to Handling Objections
1 page

Handing objections with ease comes with practice and preparation. A great way to prepare is to anticipate what objections you'll likely hear. We review the most common types of objections so you can head into your next meeting with a better plan to overcome those objections.

Tool: Overcoming Objections
4 pages

Even the very best reps can't always get final purchase commitment from a prospect after the first or second discussion. In this module, we share an approach that will help ensure that you get commitment of some sort from the prospect so you can move the sales process forward.

Tool: Hierarchy of Closes
1 page

Good salespeople know that asking questions is the most effective way to learn about the needs of your customers. But you’ve got to ask the right questions. Otherwise, you risk scaring prospective customers out the door--or simply annoying them so much that they decide to buy elsewhere.

Overcoming Objectives and Closing Quiz
8 questions
Section 7: Winning More Deals

The landscape of B2B selling has never been more complex. You need a map to help you develop winning strategies that can unlock these deals.


Here's an important truth about sales: Not every deal is meant to be won. Learn a structured opportunity fit process so you don't waste time on dud deals.


More than 60% of deals aren't lost to competitors, but to the "status quo", times when buyers lack the will or insight to move forward. Learn strategies to help move your prospects to action.


Sales professionals should play an active role helping client define their desired solution. Learn more about the actions you should be taking in this part of the pre-decision phase.


At the end of the buyer's journey, the focus shifts from uncovering issues and establishing a need to communicating the unique value of your offering. Have you developed a clear message about "why you"?


Sooner or later, it's going to happen. You get all the right buying signals, but the deal never happens. There are four simple things to focus on to avoid letting overconfidence spoil a potential deal.

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Instructor Biography

The Sales Institute at Florida State University, The leading sales education institution

The Sales Institute at Florida State University is dedicated to providing world-class sales education and training utilizing the most updated sales training technologies developed through continuous research. Our nationally recognized program is one of the largest and most unique in the nation with full-time faculty members dedicated to teaching and research in sales. On-campus we have over 1,000 students participating in one or more sales courses annually. We're excited to have partnered with The Brevet Group to bring our world-renowned sales educational program online through Udemy.

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