What the sales industry will look like in 2033

repvue
repvueNov 15, 2022

What will the sales industry look like in future? Will it not look any different in 10 years or will it be something we don’t even recognize? We explore some of the possibilities below. 

A few of the leaders here at RepVue answered questions about the future of sales. Here are their responses on what the sales industry will look like in 2033.

With all this metaverse talk, do you see us having sales calls and demos there? 

“It would create a requirement for both buyers and sellers to have all this equipment on hand and at the ready, and I think that the added benefit to this would be minimal.  You’re talking about a meeting, not exploring a city or something.  In certain instances where the sale is of some large or potentially unique piece of physical equipment, there might be edge cases, but it won’t be mainstream by 2033 for this use case.  I’m not saying the metaverse won’t be a thing, but let’s just stick with a Zoom for now!”

-Ryan Walsh, CEO 

“I’ve always envisioned a world where if everyone was remote the metaverse could make it look like we were all sitting at the same table. By 2033, this will be there for sure. “

-Darin Alpert, VP Strategy

“I think it would be potentially useful in some scenarios – depending on what’s being sold.  For SaaS / software, there’s probably not much of a value add.  But for physical goods I could imagine a scenario in which it might make sense.  Video calls have already replaced so many in-person meetings, so this would perhaps be a logical next step. But I think it’s still probably farther away than we think.  Maybe 10+ years? So 2033 isn’t a bad guess.”

-Jordan Weinstein, VP Business Development 

Will Salesforce still be the dominant CRM? Will CRMs even exist in the way we think about them today? 

“Yes, it will still be the dominant CRM, although there will be other major players just like there are now, i.e. Hubspot and others.  We’ve seen the trend of the ‘CRM’ proper really being a data hub with a ton of other tools and platforms essentially sitting on top of it (data service, outreach, engagement, financial, operations, HR, etc) and I think that will be where the industry continues to evolve.  But I see CRM competing with traditional ERP systems as the ‘source of truth’ for companies.”

-Ryan

“Salesforce is the sun and everything else is a planet that orbits around the sun but HubSpot is quickly going up market to the enterprise so I see them gaining a lot more traction on the CRM side. “

-Darin

“I think that Salesforce will have great staying power to continue to be a key piece of the customer puzzle well into the future – not so much because of their core application, but more because of the ecosystem / community that they have built.  I think that that gives them a huge moat, and will also help them evolve to meet the needs of where the market will go over the next 10 years and into the future.  Even if they don’t innovate directly, partners in their ecosystem will, and they’ll stay relevant that way.”

-Jordan

Will there still be cold calling? 

“I think it will continue to fade but there will be calling, but calling informed more by other demographic and behavioral data, so slightly warmer calling.”

-Ryan

“By 2033, there will be but buyer intent signals are getting stronger and stronger. Cold calling will be pushing more towards calling intent signals vs straight cold. “

-Darin

“This is a really interesting question… even today, it’s becoming more and more rare that people answer the phone if they don’t know the contact.  So I wouldn’t be surprised if cold calls evolve into some other form of cold outreach.  Social selling seems like it’s on the rise, and could possibly take the place of cold calls as a form of engagement / outreach.”

-Jordan

How do you see AI playing a role in sales in the future? Is it already? 

“I think things like chatbots can be ‘trained’ much more to provide information specific to prospects vs. just a traditional marketing website.  It’s the reason that companies still don’t put pricing on their website – there are so many variables on the prospect end that could impact it up or down and you don’t know the specific pains you might be solving for.  But I think AI can play a role to get to that information in a a way that buyers want, which is before they engage with another person.  It will be interesting to see how that evolves.”

-Ryan

“It certainly is from coaching to forecasting to buyer intent signals. It’s only going to get stronger!”

-Darin

“I think that AI will play a huge role – perhaps the most significant of any of the changes mentioned here.  I could see AI filling some of the initial SDR role… it could use an algorithm driven approach to do some sort of in-app outreach based on certain behavior or conditions in Salesforce, for example.  Or it could detect sentiment in a social post and ask someone whether they would be interested in a relevant product or service.”

-Jordan

What are you excited in general about when thinking about the future of the sales industry? 

“All the technology which can make sellers lives more efficient and support them in hitting the number.  I’m all for it!”

-Ryan

“ I’m most excited about sales efficiency. Healthy growth vs blitzscaling and growing at all costs will go away. I’ve always thought it was insane to hire an army of salespeople to do the work that a Navy SEAL squad could do. “

-Darin

“As we move more of our personal and digital lives online, sales prospecting will have more meaningful signals to use.  There are of course negative aspects of this, in terms of mis-information and political exploitation – but there are also positive aspects. I think that in the future sales – especially top of funnel outreach – will be more metrics-driven and targeted, and that will hopefully allow sellers to focus their efforts on truly adding value to the lives of their prospects in order to get engagement.”

-Jordan 

Conclusion 

It will definitely be interesting to see what the future holds for the sales industry. We might be making sales calls in VR while flying around in our self-driven personal aircraft, or it could be more of the same. Only time will tell. 

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