Bureau of Labor Statistics

Sales Occupations

Employment in sales and related occupations is projected to decline 2 percent, with a loss of about 303,400 jobs from 2019 to 2029. Sales workers in the services and wholesale sectors will continue to be in demand because these occupations remain critical in building and maintaining customer bases for businesses. Rising levels of e-commerce will depress employment growth in some of these occupations in the retail sector.

The median annual wage for sales and related occupations was $31,500 in May 2020, which was lower than the median annual wage for all occupations of $41,950.

BLS provides summary data, including employment projections, for sales occupations not shown in the table on this page. That information is available on the Data for Occupations Not Covered in Detail page.

  Occupation Job Summary Entry-Level Education 2020 MEDIAN PAY
Advertising sales agents

Advertising Sales Agents

Advertising sales agents sell advertising space to businesses and individuals.

High school diploma or equivalent $54,940


Cashiers process payments from customers purchasing goods and services.

No formal educational credential $25,020
Insurance sales agents

Insurance Sales Agents

Insurance sales agents contact potential customers and sell one or more types of insurance.

High school diploma or equivalent $52,180


Models pose for artists, photographers, and other clients to help advertise products.

No formal educational credential $31,910
Real estate brokers and sales agents

Real Estate Brokers and Sales Agents

Real estate brokers and sales agents help clients buy, sell, and rent properties.

High school diploma or equivalent $51,220
Retail sales workers

Retail Sales Workers

Retail sales workers help customers find products they want and process customers’ payments.

No formal educational credential $27,320
Sales engineers

Sales Engineers

Sales engineers sell complex scientific and technological products or services to businesses.

Bachelor's degree $108,830
Securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents

Securities, Commodities, and Financial Services Sales Agents

Securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents connect buyers and sellers in financial markets.

Bachelor's degree $64,770
Travel agents

Travel Agents

Travel agents sell transportation, lodging, and entertainment activities to individuals and groups planning trips.

High school diploma or equivalent $42,350
Wholesale and manufacturing sales representatives

Wholesale and Manufacturing Sales Representatives

Wholesale and manufacturing sales representatives sell goods for wholesalers or manufacturers to businesses, government agencies, and other organizations.

See How to Become One $65,420
Suggested citation:

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Sales Occupations,
at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/sales/home.htm (visited June 12, 2021).

Last Modified Date: Friday, May 14, 2021

Telephone: 1-202-691-5700 www.bls.gov/ooh Contact OOH

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