21 Creative Types of Sales Contest Ideas For Work

Sales contest is an effective way to motivate your work employees and boost overall sales performance. And to spark your creativity, I have 21 different types of sales contest ideas for you. These ideas are designed to promote healthy competition and encourage teamwork within your sales team. 

sales contest ideas

What Is a Sales Contest?

A sales contest is an organized competition among sales representatives to increase sales and achieving specific targets. It can be done individually or in teams and often involves rewards and recognition for top performers. Sales contests are a popular tool companies use to motivate their sales team and drive better results.

Why Hold a Sales Contest? Sales Contest Objectives

What are the objectives of the sales contest? The primary objective of a sales contest is to increase sales and revenue by motivating the sales team. But aside from this, there are other objectives that a sales contest can help achieve, such as: 

  • Boosting team morale and motivation 
  • Encouraging healthy competition among employees 
  • Fostering teamwork and collaboration 
  • Identifying top performers and rewarding them 
  • Driving product knowledge and customer engagement 
  • Creating a sense of urgency and boosting productivity 
  • Boosting employee retention and loyalty 

21 Types of Sales Contest Ideas for Work

What are the various sales contests? Let’s get creative and start brainstorming your next sales contest! Whether you’re in retail, banking, insurance, or real estate, there’s something here for everyone. Check out these 21 sales contest ideas to spice up your workplace!

#1. Biggest Deal Challenge 

Looking for a monthly sales contest ideas? This contest rewards the salesperson with the largest single deal of the month. It adds some healthy competition, pushing everyone to aim for bigger sales. 

Each month, give props to the rep who closes the largest deal. Rewarding the highest-cost sale motivates reps to pursue those exciting opportunities. The thrill of sealing the biggest deal of the month amps their competitive spirit! 

#2. Cold Calling Contest 

This is a one of the classic retail contest ideas for employees that never gets old. It’s simple: whoever makes the most cold calls in a given period wins! You can also make it more interesting by setting targets for appointments made or leads generated from those cold calls.

Also, consider adding a little twist by giving bonus points for conversions or setting up meetings with high-value prospects. This will encourage reps to put in extra effort and improve the quality of their calls.

#3. Best Sales Pitch 

The ability to deliver a convincing sales pitch is crucial for any salesperson. Why not turn it into a competition? Hold a contest where each rep has to deliver a sales pitch for a specific product or service and the best one wins.

This will improve your team’s pitching skills and allow them to learn from each other. You can even make it more challenging by giving them different scenarios or customer personas to cater to.

#4. Customer Retention Contest 

Retaining existing customers is always easier and more cost-effective than acquiring new ones. This sales contest idea focuses on retaining customers and rewarding the rep with the highest customer retention rate.

To make it more interesting, you can give bonus points for upselling or cross-selling to existing customers. This will not only boost revenue but also improve customer satisfaction and loyalty.

#5. Role Play Contest 

Role-playing is a great way to practice and improve selling skills. Hold a sales contest where reps have to role-play different scenarios, such as objection handling or product demonstration.

You can also get creative and include different characters for them to interact with, like the “tough customer” or the “indecisive buyer .”This will not only improve their selling skills but also their ability to adapt to different situations.

#6. Team Building Contest 

A strong team dynamic is crucial for sales success. This contest idea focuses on fostering teamwork and collaboration within your sales team.

You can divide your team into smaller groups and give them challenges that require them to work together, such as planning a mock presentation or completing a task with limited resources. Ultimately, the group with the best teamwork and results wins.

#7. Product Knowledge Quiz 

Product knowledge is essential for any salesperson. Hold a quiz contest to test your team’s knowledge of different products or services offered by your company.

To make it more challenging, you can also include questions about competitor products. This will improve their product knowledge and encourage them to stay updated on industry trends.

#8. Mystery Shopper Contest 

This sales contest idea involves hiring a mystery shopper to evaluate your team’s customer service skills and sales techniques. The rep who gets the highest score from the mystery shopper wins.

This will motivate your team to provide excellent customer service and give them valuable feedback for improvement.

#9. Referral Race 

Referrals are a great way to acquire new customers. In this sales contest, reps must focus on getting as many referrals from existing customers as possible.

You can also make it more interesting by setting targets for the number of referrals or rewarding bonus points for successful conversions from those referrals. This will increase your customer base and improve customer satisfaction and loyalty. 

#10. Deal-Closing Sprint 

This is a short-term sales contest where reps have to close as many deals as possible within a specific period, such as a week or two.

You can make it more challenging by setting targets for different types of deals or customers. The rep with the highest number of closed deals wins.

#11. Client Testimonial Contest

Positive customer reviews and testimonials are powerful tools for sales. In this contest, reps must gather as many client testimonials as possible within a specific period.

You can also give bonus points for the quality and quantity of the testimonials collected. This will improve your company’s reputation and motivate your team to provide excellent service.

#12. Social Media Contest

Social media is an essential tool for sales and marketing. This sales incentive contest focuses on improving your team’s social media skills and increasing brand awareness.

Challenge your team to increase follower engagement or generate leads through social media within a specific period. The rep with the best results wins.

#13. Upselling Contest

Upselling is a great way to boost revenue from existing customers. In this sales contest, reps have to focus on upselling products or services to existing customers.

You can also set targets for the amount of revenue generated through upselling or reward bonus points for successfully converting leads into upsells. This will not only increase revenue but also improve customer satisfaction and loyalty.

#14. Flash Contest

Flash contests are short and intense sales competitions that can last anywhere from a few hours to a day. This type of contest is great for boosting motivation and achieving quick results.

You can choose any sales metric, such as calls made or deals closed, and the rep with the highest score at the end of the flash contest wins. This will motivate your team, create a sense of urgency, and encourage them to perform at their best.

#15. Personal Development Challenge

This sales contest focuses on personal development and continuous learning. Set a challenge for reps to attend workshops, seminars, or online courses related to sales and marketing.

You can reward bonus points for each completed course or workshop, and the rep with the most points at the end of the contest wins. This will improve their skills and knowledge and show your team that you value their professional growth. 

#16. Lead Generation Contest

Are you looking for sales contest ideas for insurance agents? Lead generation is the lifeblood of any sales organization. In this contest, reps have to generate as many leads as possible within a specific period.

You can make it more challenging by setting targets for different types of leads or rewarding bonus points for successfully converting those leads into customers. This will increase your customer base, boost revenue, and motivate your team to perform at their best.  

#18. Time Management Challenge

In sales, time management is crucial for success. This contest idea focuses on improving your team’s time management skills.

Challenge your reps to complete a set number of tasks or calls within a specific time frame. You can also reward bonus points for completing tasks before the deadline. The rep with the most points at the end of the challenge wins.

#19. Financial Literacy Challenge

I have sales contest ideas for banking also. This contest focuses on improving your team’s financial literacy and understanding of banking products.

Challenge your reps to learn about different banking products such as loans, credit cards, and investments. You can also reward bonus points for successfully cross-selling or upselling these products. The rep with the most points at the end of the challenge wins.

#20. Funny Sales Video Contest

This contest idea adds a fun twist to the usual sales competition. Challenge your team to create funny, creative sales videos promoting your products or services.

You can also involve social media by asking customers to vote for their favorite video. The winning team gets a prize, and the video can also be used for marketing purposes. This will boost team morale and create buzz around your brand.  

#21. Customer Appreciation Challenge

This sales incentive contest focuses on building stronger relationships with existing customers. Challenge your team to come up with creative ways to show appreciation for loyal customers.

You can reward bonus points for things like personalized thank-you notes, surprise gifts, or special discounts. This will strengthen customer loyalty, improve your company’s reputation, and increase word-of-mouth referrals. 

Read Also: Employee engagement contest ideas

How to Host a Sales Contest for Work?

If you want to host a sales contest, here is a step-by-step guide on how to do it effectively: 

Step 1: Set Clear Objectives

Before you host a sales contest, defining what you aim to achieve is crucial. Whether it’s increasing sales, boosting morale, or improving skills, having clear objectives will guide the structure and rules of your contest. Align your contest goals with your overall sales strategy for maximum relevance and impact.

Step 2: Define the Contest Metrics

Decide on the metrics to track progress and determine the winners. Depending on the contest’s objective, it could be the number of deals closed, leads generated, or customer testimonials received. Ensure that these metrics are measurable, relevant, and tied to the sales representative’s activities.

Step 3: Set Contest Rules and Duration

Establish clear rules and specify the contest’s duration. Make sure the rules are fair and encourage healthy competition. The duration should be long enough to allow participants to progress significantly but short enough to maintain their interest.

Step 4: Communicate Effectively

Communication is key to the success of your sales contest. Inform your team about the contest’s objectives, rules, and rewards. Regular updates on progress and standings can also keep the participants motivated and engaged.

Step 5: Select Reward

Choose a reward that is attractive and meaningful to your team. It could be monetary, recognition-based, or experiential. The reward should be proportional to the effort required and the value derived from the contest.

Step 6: Track Progress and Provide Feedback

Use a tracking tool to monitor progress and provide feedback. This can motivate participants, as they can see how they’re performing relative to their peers. Regular feedback can also help them adjust their strategies to improve their performance.

Step 7: Announce Winners and Celebrate

Once the contest ends, promptly announce the winners and celebrate their achievements. Recognize the efforts of all participants to maintain morale and share the lessons learned during the contest to inspire continuous improvement.

Step 8: Evaluate and Learn

After the contest:

  1. Evaluate its effectiveness against your objectives.
  2. Gather feedback from participants to understand what worked and what didn’t.
  3. Use these insights to improve your future sales contests.

For more information about creating a sales contest, here is a video content below.

What Is the Best Time for Running a Sales Contest?

The best time for running a sales contest depends on your specific goals and objectives. Some companies prefer to run contests during slow periods to boost sales, while others choose peak seasons to keep their team motivated. Here, I have a time chart for you.

New Season, New Contest

Running a sales contest at the start of a new season can help set the tone for the upcoming months and motivate your team to achieve their targets.

End of Quarter or Year-End Push

The end of each quarter is a popular time for sales contests as it allows companies to boost their numbers before reporting them. Similarly, year-end push contests can incentivize reps to close deals and increase revenue.

Slow Periods

During slow periods, such as holidays or off-season times, a sales contest can excite your team to stay focused and productive.

Product Launch

Launching a new product presents the perfect opportunity for a sales contest. It can generate buzz around the product and motivate your team to promote it effectively.

Special Occasions

Special occasions such as company anniversaries or holidays can be a great time to run a sales contest. For example, a customer appreciation challenge during the holiday season can strengthen relationships and increase sales simultaneously.


Festivals are a great time to run sales contests as people tend to be in a buying mood during these times. For instance, Christmas is coming soon, so it is good to get your sales contest rolling for Christmas in advance. A new year is another great time for a sales contest as people are looking to invest in new products or services for the upcoming year.

Read also: Valentine’s day work contest ideas

Prize Ideas for Sales Contest?

Running a sales contest can be successful by awarding prizes to the winner(s). Here are some ideas for prizes that can motivate your sales team:  

  • Cash bonuses or gift cards
  • Extra paid time off or vacation days
  • Special recognition and awards include “Top Salesperson of the Month.”
  • A personalized trophy or plaque
  • Company merchandise or branded items
  • Team outings or experiences, such as a group dinner or tickets to a sporting event
  • Training or development opportunities, such as attending a conference or workshop
  • A day off from work or the option to work remotely for a set period of time. 

FAQs on Sales Incentive Contest Ideas

How do you structure a sales contest?

To structure a sales contest, follow these steps: 

  1. Set clear objectives that align with your sales strategy.
  2. Choose relevant metrics to track progress and determine winners.
  3. Establish fair rules and specify the duration of the contest.
  4. Communicate effectively with your team about the contest and its rewards.
  5. Select an attractive and meaningful reward for participants. 
  6. Track progress and provide feedback through a tracking tool.
  7. Announce winners and celebrate their achievements.
  8. Evaluate the effectiveness of the contest and gather feedback for improvement.

How do you keep participants motivated during a sales contest?

To keep participants motivated during a sales contest, consider these strategies:

  • Set achievable targets that challenge but do not overwhelm them.
  • Offer attractive rewards that are proportional to the effort required.
  • Provide regular feedback on progress and standings.
  • Encourage healthy competition and recognize efforts from all participants.
  • Keep the contest relevant and aligned with your sales strategy.

How long should a sales contest last?

The ideal duration for a sales contest depends on your objectives, team size, and complexity of tasks. Generally, shorter contests (2-4 weeks) can maintain participants’ interest and drive urgency, while longer contests (6-8 weeks) can allow for more significant progress and outcomes. Consider your team’s dynamics and choose the best duration for them. 

What is a contest in sales promotion?

A contest in sales promotion is a marketing strategy that aims to increase sales and motivate sales representatives through competitive activities and rewards. It typically involves setting targets or metrics for participants to achieve within a given timeframe, with the top performers receiving prizes or recognition. 

Contests in sales promotion can be an effective way to drive performance and engagement within a sales team.  

Who should I be involved in planning a sales contest?

Involving relevant stakeholders and team members when planning a sales contest is essential. These may include sales managers, team leaders, marketing or HR personnel, and even representatives from different departments who can provide valuable insights and support. 

Consider forming a committee or task force to manage the planning and execution of the contest.  


Now that you have some fresh sales contest ideas, it’s time to implement them. Remember to keep your team motivated and engaged by regularly implementing new and exciting contests. 

With these ideas, you can boost sales, improve team performance, and create a positive work culture within your organization.

Julia Nancy
Julia Nancy

I have vast experience arranging online voting contests for hundreds of clients worldwide in the last 8 years. I also helped countless clients to win their online competitions. Here, on royalvotes.com, I am just sharing knowledge from my experiences. If you need any help regarding the online contest, email me at julia@royalvotes.com