Jobs That Pay by Commission

There are a large number of sales-oriented careers that offer payment through commission. We will explore some of these commission-based careers below in greater detail.

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Careers That Pay by Commission

Individuals who enjoy having the potential to earn more money based on their individual performance, rather than a set yearly salary, may want to consider a job that pays commission. Most of these jobs are sales-oriented in nature and reward workers who are able to meet or exceed sales goals. Below, we will look at five different commission-based jobs and discuss what makes each one unique.

Job Title Median Salary (2016)* Job Growth (2016-2026)*
Securities, Commodities, and Financial Services Sales Agent $67,310 6%
Insurance Sales Agent $49,990 10%
Personal Financial Advisor $90,530 14%
Real Estate Broker/Sales Agent $46,410 6%
Retail Sales Worker $22,900 2%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Information About Jobs That Pay by Commission

Securities, Commodities, and Financial Services Sales Agent

There are several different types of securities, commodities, and financial services sales agent, all of whom generally act as a sort of intermediary between buyers and sellers. For example, you could work as an investment banker, which involves helping businesses that are in need of funding find willing investors, or you could work as a broker, which would involve selling securities and commodities to individuals. As a new employee you may earn a salary, but as you gain more and more clients your income will be based primarily on how many securities or commodities you sell or how well various investments do. To become a securities, commodities, and financial services sales agent, you will typically need at least a bachelor's degree to find a job, though having a Master of Business Administration degree will be helpful to secure more advanced positions.

Insurance Sales Agent

As an insurance sales agent, you will be in charge of selling various types of insurance plans to clients. You may specialize in selling a particular type of insurance, like life insurance, property and casualty insurance, and health insurance, which would involve you knowing the ins and outs of the details of various policies so that you could properly explain them to potential clients. In the insurance sales industry, commission is the most typical form of payment, which could also be combined with bonuses or a set salary. To become an insurance sales agent, you will usually only need a high school diploma along with a state licensure.

Personal Financial Advisor

Personal financial advisors help individuals make plans regarding their personal finances, like opening savings accounts for college and retirement, making investments, and purchasing stocks and bonds. You will work closely with clients to gain an understanding of their financial goals and how conservative or aggressive they want to be regarding their investments. If you are self-employed or work for a financial investment firm, your income will generally be based on how well your clients investments do. To become a personal financial advisor, you will usually need a bachelor's degree in a field like finance or economics.

Real Estate Broker/Sales Agent

Real estate brokers and sales agents work with individuals or businesses who are in the market to sell or buy new homes, office buildings, and other types of properties. They work with clients to understand what they are looking for in a property, select properties that they think their clients may like, schedule showings, and negotiate sales with other agents on the buyer or seller's behalf. The majority of a real estate broker or sales agent's income is based on commission, which is typically a percentage of the total sale price. To become a real estate broker or agent, you will need to complete some courses in real estate in order to become licensed in your state.

Retail Sales Worker

Retail sales workers typically are employed by different types of retail stores selling many products like clothing, appliances, furniture, and cars, to name a few. These workers often approach potential customers while they are in the store in order to see if they need help finding something or to answer any questions they may have about the products. Some retail sales positions are entirely commission-based, while others combine commission and a modest base salary. To become a retail sales worker, a high school diploma is typically necessary.

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