What could motivate a SaaS sales team to close more deals?

Hello, we are a small cloud SaaS startup. We are planning to hire 3 sales people. I am guessing what should we look when hiring and how much bonuses should we pay that would motivate them to close more deals? Our software price is $40 USD per user. For example, I am thinking to pay 30% of deals monthly value for 5 months after the deal is closed. Which method is most efficient and motivates salesman's to work close more deals? (note that company shares can't be given) Anyone has experience on hiring, managing and expanding international software sales team? Thank you.


Assuming each sales person is carrying a $1,000,000 quota then that works out to 2084 new users per year.

That translates to an annual bonus of $125K USD on target earnings.

If you are looking to motivate more sales, then I would suggest a sliding bonus structure that increases as reps sell more. I would also include a mechanism to prevent sales reps from sandbagging (defering deals for higher bonus).

Assuming a monthly quota of 175 new users acquired per month.


175 or less new users per month = 30% of value of first five months value

If attained quota from previous month (over 175 new users):
0 to 175 new users earn bonus of 30% of value of first five months value
175 to 350 new users earn bonus of 45% of value of first five months value
350+ new users earn bonus of 60% of value of first five months value.

I would also not underestimate the competitiveness of sales people. Run sales contest for your reps, and give the top rep for the previous month perks for winning. It could be as simple as a prime parking spot, or gift certificate for dinner.

Have you considered a reseller/partner program/affiliate program? These programs are typically commission only and are very scalable as they do not require the same labor costs as a direct sales force.

I've had great success growing international partner programs & affiliate programs for various SaaS companies.


Mick Kitor

Answered 8 years ago

I'd personally give them a cut of the sales for the first 12 months.

I'd also look to gamify sales. There's a bunch of existing software out there like Bunchball, Hoopla, greatify, etc.

I'm happy to chat if you want to go deeper.

Answered 8 years ago

I think you're working on the wrong end of the problem.

If you hire well, your salespeople shouldn't have to be motivated externally.

The real issue is how are you generating qualified leads?

How qualified are your leads, really? Because "the close" is set up for success or failure long before the salesperson reaches that part of the process.

Answered 8 years ago

The single most effective tool I have ever used to some form of a contest. Whether it be daily, weekly, or monthly. It causes a drive within the staff no matter how small. Just make sure there is a decent incentive and also make sure to have a focus on "bragging rights." Even your quietest employee will be motivated and it is an excellent time for team building.

Answered 7 years ago

Unlock Startups Unlimited

Access 20,000+ Startup Experts, 650+ masterclass videos, 1,000+ in-depth guides, and all the software tools you need to launch and grow quickly.

Already a member? Sign in

Copyright © 2024 LLC. All rights reserved.