Is Becoming an Independent Sales Rep the Right Job for Me?
In today’s ever-changing economic landscape, the certainty of employment and the quality of current employment can be unpredictable. For those working as part of an in-house sales team, this uncertainty can be felt by having commissions cut, bonuses reduced or eradicated, and seeing jobs disappear. And as more people continue to work from home, many have decided to break free from the challenges of working for someone else entirely.

Female independent sales rep smiling
If you are a salaried sales rep working for a company or if you are looking for a change in your current sales position, the idea of becoming an independent sales rep and being your own boss can be very enticing. There are definite benefits to this career path, but it isn’t always the right choice for everyone.    

What is an Independent Sales Rep? 

An independent sales rep, also referred to as a manufacturer’s rep, is an independent contractor who sells the products and services of several different manufacturers in a defined territory. The product lines and services they sell are closely related but do not compete with one another.    

Independent sales representatives allow businesses to quickly expand their brands reach by using existing connections to bring products and services to new markets. Since most sales reps know their territories and relationships within those territories well, manufacturers can typically penetrate a market where they have little to no exposure very quickly.

As a self-employed contractor, an independent sales rep works on a commission-only basis, making an agreed upon percentage of the goods and services sold in their region. By not being a direct employee, the upfront costs and risks that are assumed by a company when hiring an in-house sales team such as salaries, taxes, and insurance, are eliminated.   

What are the benefits to being an Independent Sales Rep? 

There are numerous benefits to being an independent sales rep, but the major benefit is more money! 

Determined independent sales reps have the opportunity to earn a substantial, unlimited income, one that far exceeds the salary of an inside or outside sales agent working directly for a company. Being able to represent an unlimited amount of products and services from an unlimited number of manufacturers often results in greater earning potential as the ability arises for multiple sales to be closed at a single time. And the more you sell, the more money you make, PERIOD. 

Independent sales representatives also enjoy the freedom of being their own boss. Though one must be 100% committed to the position in order to be successful, sales reps have the ability to set their own work schedules and expectations, to travel, to work independently, to decide what they are willing to sell, and to grow an expansive professional network. 

What are the drawbacks to being an Independent Sales Rep?

There can be a few drawbacks associated with being an independent sales rep, but the main drawback tends to be money. Wait, how can that be? Let us explain further.

Yes, committed independent sales reps have tremendous earning potential, however, most independent sales positions are solely commission based. Meaning, if the product lines and services you represent do not sell in your region, or if you do not have well-established relationships with buyers, you will not make money. Not having a base salary to fall back on can be an understandable drawback for some.

Another monetary factor that can come into play is the need for benefits, such as health insurance and retirement. As a self-employed contractor, independent sales reps must be able to purchase, manage, and contribute to these benefit plans on their own as they are not provided by the manufacturers they represent.   

How do I become an Independent Sales Rep?

If you are interested in starting a rewarding career as an independent sales rep, create a high-quality sales rep profile with us today! Once you are finished, you will be able to browse through our available sales opportunities to find product lines and companies that interest you most. 

Your new career is just around the corner! 

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