Commission only

A commission-only compensation plan is a type of compensation plan in which salespeople are paid a commission on the sales they generate. There is no base salary or hourly wage. Commissions are typically calculated as a percentage of the sale price, and they can be paid on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis.

The benefits of a commission-only compensation plan include:

It can motivate salespeople to sell more. When salespeople are paid only on commission, they have a direct financial incentive to sell as much as possible. This can lead to increased sales and revenue for the business.

It can attract high-performing salespeople. Commission-only compensation plans can be attractive to high-performing salespeople who are motivated by the potential to earn a high income with no cap.

Of course, challenges exist too: 

Here are some of the challenges of a commission-only compensation plan.

It can be risky for salespeople. If salespeople do not sell enough, they may not earn enough money to make a living. This can lead to financial hardship and turnover.

It can be difficult to attract and retain good salespeople. Commission-only compensation plans can be difficult to sell to potential salespeople. Many salespeople prefer the security of a base salary or hourly wage.

It can be difficult to track and manage commissions. Commissions can be difficult to track and manage, especially if the business has a large sales force. This can lead to errors and disputes.

Industries with commission-only compensation plans:

  • Real estate
  • Auto sales
  • Insurance

Whether or not a commission-only compensation plan is right for your business depends on a number of factors, including the type of business you are in, the sales goals you have, and the type of salespeople you want to attract. If you are considering a commission-only compensation plan, it is important to weigh the benefits and challenges carefully before making a decision.

Keep up with our content

Subscribe to our newsletter and get fresh insights monthly