How Much to Pay a Salesperson – Average Salaries for Major U.S. Cities

Samir Sampat

When it comes to paying employees, it can be tricky to figure out what’s appropriate. Plus, there’s more to it than just their salary—you’ll also have to think about whether you’re including benefits, commission, etc. It can seem like an impossible math equation trying to figure out how much to pay someone when you need to hire help. 

Fortunately, we’ve got the information you need. In the guide below, we’ll take a look at the average salaries for salespeople around the U.S., as well as what considerations go into determining salary rates in the first place. 


Factors affecting what a salesperson earns


Several variables come into play when hiring any employee, and especially someone in sales. Their salary will start at a base that is determined by the role, region, and level of experience and go from there. The regional factor does still affect hiring, despite virtual work, because the cost of living is different in different parts of the world. Thus, a salesperson in Los Angeles would arguably earn more than a salesperson in a small town in Ohio. 

Some of the major factors here include:

  • Years of experience
  • Type and level of sales position
  • Benefits offered in addition to salary
  • Commission (if offered)
  • Location
  • Roles/responsibilities


These are just a few of the main factors that come to mind when trying to determine what a salesperson will earn in their role with a company. It’s important to think about the type of person that you’re hiring and what is expected of them so that you can ensure they are paid accordingly. The size of a company may also impact a salesperson’s salary, but this goes along with the type and level of position, essentially. 

A retail sales associate will earn less than an enterprise sales executive, in most cases. However, that may also vary depending on location and position, because some retail workers make really good money, and some sales executives aren’t always paid so well—but these are things that will factor into how much you’ll have to pay a salesperson. 


What is a salesperson? 


This might sound like an obvious question, but it’s a much more dynamic role than many people think. It’s also versatile—what a “sales team” does for one company might be completely different than what they do at another business. Typically, salespeople are in roles where they are responsible for generating leads and conversations, and ultimately sales for the business that they’re employed with. 

Salespeople can work from your office (inside sales) or in the field (outside sales). Usually, outside sales pros earn more in terms of commission, but that’s not necessarily the case. And if you’re the one hiring, you can decide how this shakes out for yourself. Regardless, if you hire the right salesperson, they will become a great asset for your business. 

Of course, because they can handle a variety of duties and responsibilities, their salaries could vary significantly, as well. You might have someone whose entire job is direct sales and commission-based, or you could have someone who earns a base salary and makes inside sales calls to earn commissions—or perhaps you skip the commissions altogether and just pay a salary. In any case, you’ll need to know what numbers make sense here Let’s take a look at some of the numbers that you should keep in mind. 


The average salesperson salary by city


In the United States, Indeed.com reports that the average salesperson earns a salary of $55,000, not including commissions (~$12K, on average) or other perks. How does that break down by city? Here’s the list, courtesy of that same Indeed report, as well as Salary.com.


Top cities in the U.S.:


  1. New York, NY: $72,000
  2. San Francisco, CA: $68,000
  3. Washington, D.C.: $68,000
  4. Elizabeth, NJ: $67,000
  5. Boston, MA: $66,000
  6. Seattle, WA: $66,000
  7. Anchorage, AK: $65,000
  8. Honolulu, HI: $65,000
  9. New Haven, CT: $65,000
  10. Dover, DE: $64,000
  11. Chicago, IL: $63,000
  12. Annapolis, MD: $62,000
  13. Dallas, TX: $62,000
  14. Philadelphia, PA: $62,000
  15. San Diego, CA: $62,000
  16. Minneapolis, MN: $61,000
  17. San Antonio, TX: $60,500
  18. Austin, TX: $60,000
  19. Denver, CO: $60,000
  20. Detroit, MI: $60,000
  21. Las Vegas, NV: $60,000
  22. Phoenix, AZ: $60,000 
  23. Portland, OR: $60,000
  24. Raleigh, NC: $60,000
  25. Cleveland, OH: $59,000
  26. Indianapolis, IN: $59,000
  27. Los Angeles, CA: $59,000
  28. Madison, WI: $59,000
  29. Orlando, FL: $59,000
  30. Pittsburgh, PA: $59,000
  31. Atlanta, GA: $58,000
  32. Boise, ID: $58,000
  33. Burlington, VT: $58,000
  34. New Orleans, LA: $58,000
  35. Salt Lake City, UT: $58,000
  36. St. Louis, MO: $58,000
  37. Augusta, ME: $57,000
  38. Charleston, SC: $57,000
  39. Miami, FL: $57,000
  40. Mobile, AL: $56,000
  41. Brooklyn: $55,000
  42. Des Moines, IA: $55,000
  43. Tulsa, OK: $55,000
  44. Houston: $54,000
  45. Kansas City, KS: $54,000
  46. Lexington, KY: $54,000
  47. Little Rock, AR: $54,000
  48. Omaha, NE: $54,000
  49. Nashville, TN: $53,000
  50. Charleston, WV: $52,000


Or save the salary and leave inbound and outbound sales to the agents at Smith.ai 


If you’re not flush with cash, adding a salesperson might not be a good idea for your budget. However, you still need someone to pick up the slack. The solution? Choose the virtual receptionists at Smith.ai and you’ll get a solution for inbound and outbound sales and support, along with a team that can handle lead intake and scheduling, after-hours call answering, live website chat, and so much more. 

We’ll help you craft a dynamic strategy to manage everything, no matter how much or how little we do for you. And we’ll even make sure that we integrate with your tools so that everything is streamlined, and you can stay on top of how things are going. 

To learn more, schedule a consultation to discuss what the 24/7 virtual receptionists at Smith.ai can do for your sales and more. You can also reach us at hello@smith.ai or (650) 727-6484. 


Samir Sampat

Samir Sampat is a Marketing and Events Associate with Smith.ai. He has experience working with businesses of all sizes focusing on marketing, communications, and business development.

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