Ultimate Door to Door Sales Guide (With Tips & Scripts)

Want to Improve Your Team's Sales Performance?

Table of Contents

Looking to level-up your door to door sales process in 2023? This guide is for you.

Let’s be honest. There is a stigma around door to door sales and that it’s an antiquated way of selling. As the next generation of outside sales reps join the workforce, the majority are unaware just how powerful door to door selling can be.

We know the reason D2D prospecting is still relevant: It works. Today, 65% of outside sales reps attain quota, which is 10% higher than inside sales reps’ quota attainment.

But, selling door to door isn’t for everybody or for every type of business. It takes a certain kind of person and process to be effective at door to door selling.

Door to door sales can be a rewarding sales career for the right individuals, and drive the bottom line for businesses in many different industries. In this post, we’ll cover the fundamentals of door to door selling, share some tips for success, and talk about technology that can help sales teams and managers achieve their objectives.

Let’s get started.


Table of Contents

Pillars of the D2D Sales Process
How To Be A Successful Door To Door Salesperson
11 Door to Door Sales Tips to Crush Sales Quota
How to Recruit High-Performing Door to Door Sales Reps
Door to Door Sales Compensation Models
Popular Door To Door Sales Industries
The Ultimate Door to Door Sales Toolset
Costly Door To Door Marketing Mistakes


What is Door to Door Sales?

Door to door sales is the process of canvassing a territory and speaking face to face with prospects about the benefits of a product or service.


Pillars of the D2D Sales Process

Wondering how to be a good door to door salesman? Effective door to door sales processes are based on the following pillars:

Prospecting: The search for new customers is called prospecting. Prospects are essential to your sales funnel, because you need a steady stream of new customers in order to grow.

Qualifying: Qualifying means identifying a prospect’s need that matches one of the features or benefits you offer. Qualifying prospects is based on their “pain” (enough pain to buy), budget (the money to buy), and decision (authority to buy). It requires a door to door salesperson to ask a lot of open-ended questions, listen carefully, and respond appropriately.

Pitching: When you make an offer and describe the benefits to your qualified prospect, that’s called pitching. Knowing the lead’s needs is essential to your success. You provide a solution to their pain points and explain how your product makes their lives or jobs easier. This makes a door to door sales pitch really resonate with the prospect.

Closing: Closing is when you convince the potential customer to buy your product or service. There are numerous ways to close a deal, and finding the one that works best for you and each qualified prospect is a vital skill for successful door to door sales. 

Follow-up: After the sale, the door to door salesperson should establish contact to ensure the customer received what they ordered, felt satisfied, and received answers to any questions. This is called follow-up. It’s essential to establishing a relationship with your new customer, and the gateway to future opportunities with the customer, should their needs change.


How To Be A Successful Door To Door Salesperson

Like all sales professions, specific traits will help a door to door sales person achieve success. We have identified a few core skills and personality traits that most successful door to door selling professionals share:


1. They know their product inside and out. To explain the features and benefits, or even to gauge need, sales reps must have thorough knowledge of their product or service.

2. Their expertise provides value to the customer. Customers are more educated than ever before, with the resources available to them online. If sales reps tell them what they already know, they’re not providing any value. HubSpot recommends that D2D sales professionals educate the prospect about what they can’t discover on their own, thereby establishing credibility and trust.

3. They build rapport immediately. The most successful sales professionals in D2D sales (and otherwise) are people that have excellent emotional intelligence and are skillful in the art of finding connections with other people. Some people have these skills naturally and don’t have to think about it; others have to research a prospect to find common ground. However they do it, the ability to build rapport is a critical skill in the D2D profession.

4. They understand how to ask questions that qualify prospects. The best sales reps ask questions that reveal a prospect’s pain points. They use open-ended questions to gather information and close-ended probes to establish needs.

5. They are expert listeners. Once they ask questions, they actively listen as the prospect answers.

6. They are excellent at WIFM.WIFM stands for, “What’s In It For Me?” The most successful sales reps are able to explain how their product or service will help the prospect.

7. They know how to establish expectations for the call. The most successful salespeople explain to the prospect what will happen next. InsightSquared.com suggests creating a buyer-seller agreement, which is a verbal agreement that outlines what will happen next in the call and makes the lead more comfortable.

8. They outline the purchasing process well. Honesty is key to building trust. Sales reps that explain what the prospect will experience before, during, and after the sale will be successful at establishing that trust. HubSpot warns sales professionals not to promote the possibility of adding a feature or benefit unless they know for a fact they can. If they are unable or unwilling to follow through, it damages trust and ruins the relationship (and potential for future sales) with the customer.

9. They are strategic about prospecting and manage their time well. Smart prospecting can help establish a better lead stockpile. Whether that means calling on current customers and looking for referrals or reviving lost opportunities, InsightSquared.com suggests the most successful D2D sales reps are strategic in their efforts. Also, the most successful in D2D sales manage their time well, meaning they focus their efforts on the most likely prospects and recognize when a deal isn’t going anywhere.

10. They have a few ways to close. Knowing how and when to close is a critical skill for all sales reps, especially in the D2D sales environment. Not all customers are the same, and neither are your prospects, so make sure you understand what appeals to your target audience. When you are presenting and handling objections, you should also be thinking of how you will ask for the order. (See our blog on specific strategies for closing deals).

11. They maintain excellent activity records. Successful D2D sales reps keep detailed notes about prospects, pain points, and meetings. With this information, they can continue to build rapport and move the prospect further into the sales funnel.


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12 Door To Door Sales Tips To Crush Sales Quota

Being able to consistently achieve sales quota requires a combination of tactics that give sales reps the best shot at hitting their numbers. Below are some strategies that will help reps sell door to door.


Master the Product

Why is this important?

Excellent product knowledge is paramount to your success. After all, you can’t sell what you don’t understand.

Actionable tip:

Practice explaining your product’s features and benefits to someone who knows nothing about it (a friend or family member, for example)Then ask what questions they have or if they have feedback on your presentation.


Prospect Efficiently

Why is this important?

Qualified prospects are the best prospects that will lead to more revenue for your company’s (and your) bottom line. By finding the fastest ways to identify qualified prospects, you can shorten the selling cycle and close more sales.

Additionally, by having a solid lead qualification process in place, you can sell with confidence knowing you’re not wasting valuable time pitching to someone that’s a poor fit.



Actionable tip:

Asking your satisfied customers for referrals is a fantastic way to get qualified prospects. Not only will a satisfied customer want to help you, but they are also likely to refer you to someone they know needs your product or service because they don’t want to irritate their contacts with a pointless sales call.

This tactic might also work with people you are working with currently, or recent prospects, even if the outcome is still uncertain or was not a sale.


Assign Sales Territories

Why is this important?

Outlining and assigning territories ensures there is no overlap, reps have enough leads to work, and the top reps are working the biggest accounts.

Actionable tip:

Territory Management Software reduces the manual work of assigning territories and gives managers the ability to assign territories and create territory hierarchies with just a few clicks. It also provides data-backed insight into territory history and performance.


Automate Tedious Tasks

Why is this important?

Automating routine tasks frees up more time for sales teams to focus on selling, which in turn leads to more closed deals.

Actionable tip:

Using a tool that automates tasks such as CRM data entry, sending emails, updating contact info, logging activities, and planning a day in the field can increase rep productivity by as much as 46%.


Real-time Activity Feed in SPOTIO


Find the Pain

Why is this important?

When the pain of change is less than the pain of the status quo, prospects will invest in solutions. Sometimes a prospect might have become accustomed to a pain point in their current situation and not realize that a better alternative exists.

Actionable tip:

Asking questions about common issues your product or service solves (and you know are prevalent in your prospect’s experience) is a way to uncover the pain. Ask how those challenges affect their productivity, resources, or profits, so they can begin to recognize the importance of resolving the issue.

Employing the Sandler Selling method here would be ideal because this technique is built around selling to a prospects pain points.



Pay Attention To Body Language

Why is this important?

People communicate with far more than their words. Recognizing and understanding the visual cues that people give you can tell you a lot about what they think of your product or service.

Actionable tip:

Entrepreneur.com recommends knowing your pitch so well that you can deliver it while simultaneously assessing the signals your prospect is giving you. Observe facial expression, body position, and even breathing patterns to discern whether your cold-call is giving you the cold shoulder or warming up to your suggestions.

Remember: Your prospect is probably observing your body language, too. (Learn more in our blog post about the five body language mistakes that may cost you the sale)


Pitch Perfectly

Why is this important?

People form impressions of you quickly — sometimes in as little as10 seconds. So, you need to communicate what you are selling and present your best information, quickly.

Actionable tip:

The perfect pitch consists of four parts: introduction, questions, presentation, and close.

First, introduce yourself and your product while making eye contact and smiling. Then, ask open-ended questions and let the prospect do the talking. Present your product with the pertinent information first, and keep it short. Finally, ask for their business.


Get to the “No” Faster

Why is this important?

D2D sales is a numbers game, which makes time a vital resource for you. A lot of rejection is involved. Some people are upfront about it, but many people are too polite to say “No.” Polite people may let you pitch, even when they have no intention of buying, which only takes up time you could be spending with someone who is interested.

Actionable tip:

Entrepreneur.com. says that you should make people comfortable saying no. In other words, give them an out if you think they’re just being polite.

Example: “If at any point you feel the product I’m selling is of no value to you, please don’t hesitate to tell me so. You won’t hurt my feelings and I don’t want to waste anyone’s time.”

If you have a product with you, you could show it, presenting it to them as a solution to their problem. Then you could ask them whether they think your product is something that might help them. Not only will that allow them to politely decline earlier in the sales call, but it might also encourage them to look more closely at what you are offering.


Craft a Sales Script

Why is this important?

Knowing what you’re going to say and what you need to find out will help when you’re making cold calls. A sales script will help you seem eloquent and knowledgeable, and help you stay on track and calm in a sales call.

Actionable tip:

Take notes about your calls as you work. Over time, you’ll see what qualified leads had in common, and you can use that information as the basis for your sales script.

The script should include basic details, like the introduction and the pitch, along with questions you use to qualify leads. By putting together a script, you can navigate the sales call and quickly determine which prospects are uninterested and which may be open to learning more.


Learn How to Handle Objections

Why is this important?

Objections are the reasons prospects have for not buying your product. In a D2D sales situation, these reasons might also be a way to put off a “Yes.” It is your job to determine if the objection is really a “No,” or just an obstacle to overcome.

Actionable tip:

Use the LAER model. LAER is an objection-handling concept created by Carew International (a leading provider of sales training, leadership development and customer service programs).

LAER stands for Listen, Acknowledge, Explore and Respond. In other words, pay attention to their objection, acknowledge that you understand it, ask them why they feel the way they do, then reply to their feelings with empathy and an explanation that might resolve their objection.



Analyze The Data

Why is this important?

Data can help you identify opportunities for improvement. . Some key metrics to track: leads created by each rep, visits made, pipeline velocity, and number of activities per rep.

The sooner you address a problem in your sales process, the quicker you will get results.



Actionable tip:

Keep a record of daily activity that includes how many calls you had, people you talked to, demos you performed, and units you sold. Then analyze your results to look for weak points in your process. For example, if you didn’t sell a lot, maybe your demo needs work.


Always Follow Up

44% of sales reps give up after one follow-up (source).

Why is this important?

Nearly half of sales reps never make a follow-up attempt, and that can result in lost sales. (See our blog post about why following up is important).

Actionable tip:

Keep an appointment app or book available so you can organize and optimize your call back schedule by neighborhood or business type. Also, whenever possible gather information like an email address so you can send a note and add prospects to any automatic follow-up software you might be using.

Within SPOTIO’s appointment setting feature you can easily organize and manage the follow-up process. From the field, capture lead notes, input a prospect’s contact details, view, set, and manage appointments.

The best part? All this information will automatically sync to SPOTIO, eliminating the task of having to re-enter field notes at the end of the day.


How to Recruit High-Performing Door to Door Sales Reps

One of the first things you should do when hiring a D2D sales team is to decide who your ideal candidate is. What traits are you looking for, and what kind of skills do you require?

You should also decide early if you want experienced or inexperienced D2D sales professionals. Experienced canvassers can get right to work and start delivering leads, but their sales techniques may not align with your goals. New canvassers might be slower to start and get results, but you have the opportunity to train them on exactly how you want them to work.

We recommend finding three to five candidates to interview. You can look for candidates on LinkedIn, Indeed, and ZipRecruiter, as well as ask your professional network for any recommendations.


Interview Questions For Door to Door Salespeople

Once you have a pool of appropriate candidates, it’s time for you to screen for the best of the bunch.

Some examples of great questions include:

  • What do you do for fun?
  • What motivates you and why?
  • Where have you worked before and what did you like best and least about it?
  • What programs do you like to watch on TV and why?
  • Would you please describe for me a typical day for you on your last job?
  • Can you please share an example of when you convinced someone to do something they were not interested in doing at the time?
  • How do you set goals and hold yourself accountable?
  • What do you want to be doing a year from now? Three? Five?
  • Who was your best boss so far and what did you learn from him or her?
  • What is the best lesson you ever learned in a work training session that you still use today?
  • How do you deal with rejection?
  • How do you celebrate success?


3 Door to Door Sales Compensation Models

Many commission structure options exist for door to door to sales reps. All of them operate on the principle that when you hit your targets, you make more money.

Here are a few of the most common compensation models with pros and cons for each:


Commission Only

What it is: This compensation model does not have a salary. The earnings of the D2D sales professional are variable and dependent upon their ability to close. It is typically a 1099 arrangement, meaning that the sales reps are independent contractors.

Pros: This payment system is best for people that are self-motivated and eager to sell; these people can see sales as a career rather than just a job.

Cons: It can be tougher for people without as much experience as it can take some time to earn enough salary in the beginning and can lead to high turnover and a negative company culture.


Gross Margin

What it is: While it may or may not have a base salary, a gross margin commission structure pays the D2D sales rep on the amount of profit a sale generates. For example, if the deal is for $1,000, but the cost associated with the sale are $300, then the rep earns commission on $1,000 minus $300, or $700 gross margin.

Many organizations that employ this structure believe that all sales should be profitable for the company, and therefore pay less on those sales that have lower margin associated with them.

Pros: The sales rep earns more on sales with higher margins, so they concentrate on closing high-value deals.

Cons: Since the sales rep cannot control the costs associated with the order, they may become frustrated by lower commissions than they were expecting, which can result in more turnover.


Tiered Commission

What it is: When a company uses the tiered-commission style of compensation, they pay more commission on sales that occur after a certain level. For example, the sales rep might earn 5% commission on all sales up to $10,000 in a given period, but then earn an additional 3% on any sales over that amount for a total of 8% commission.

Pros: This commission structure motivates sales reps to continue selling, even after they’ve already met their quotas. With other compensation structures, sales reps might sandbag orders once they hit their goal, which isn’t best for the company.

Cons: Sales reps who aren’t going to exceed their goal one month might hold orders until the following month to maximize the commission. We developed a dedicated resource to dive deeper into the subject.



Popular Door to Door Sales Industries

Many industries employ a door to door sales force. Some of the most prominent include the following:


Solar Energy

Door to door sales of residential rooftop solar panels work well for the solar energy industry, because the product is complicated and is best explained in a one-on-one, in-home consultation.


Solar Sales Guide



Roofing is expensive, and a homeowner might be more likely to purchase a new roof if a sales rep explains the benefits of it in person.


Home Improvement

Door to door sales works well for home improvement services, because D2D sales professionals can demonstrate how homeowners can upgrade or maintain their homes. Sales reps also know that they’re speaking with decision-makers, when they meet with homeowners and can typically know within minutes which leads are viable.



Alarms and security systems that protect a homeowner’s property are other products that are best explained in person.


Canvassing efforts have worked well for sellers of telecommunications services, because they can offer persuasive reasons to switch from a current provider to a new service.


The Ultimate Door to Door Sales Toolset

The technology you use is a crucial part of success in D2D sales. Following are some of the best tools for managing the D2D sales process:



Tool #1: Route Planner

Route planner optimizes route efficiency, so you are in the best possible area to talk to people about your product or service. Also, the mileage tracking feature helps you stay on top of your expenses.


Sales Routing. Route Planner. Sales Route Planner App


Tool #2: Lead Machine

Lead management software allows you to easily capture potential customers’ data and any other details pertinent to the sales cycle. You can access this information in the field, so you’re always prepared for conversations with leads.



Tool #3: Appointment Setting

You need technology that makes it easy to schedule appointments — for yourself or for other members of the sales team. SPOTIO’s appointment setting feature lets you see everyone’s schedule and schedule demos or appointments from your mobile device.


Tool #4: Customer Mapping

A customer mapping solution takes complex data from your CRM and compiles it into an easy-to-view interactive map.

With a mapping tool, you can look at a map, zoom in on a territory, and tap it to see all prospect information and rep data.



Tool #5: AutoPlays

Autoplays are like a roadmap for sales activities and next steps. They eliminate the need for sales reps to keep track of when they should follow up, where prospects are in the pipeline, and what activity comes next.

Whether it’s a text, email, visit or call, AutoPlays deploys the right activity at the right time, keeping prospects engaged, reps productive, and leads moving through the pipeline.



Tool #6: CRM Integration

Manual processes can be a drag on productivity. With CRM integration, any notes or data recorded while canvassing will automatically push to your CRM, ensuring sales reps are always working with the most recent information.



Tool #1: Territory Management

Territory management software allows you to determine strategic territories for your sales reps to cover.

A strategic territory maximizes your team’s contact rate and allows the sales reps to spend more time talking with potential customers.


Tool #2: Sales Leaderboards

Sales leaderboard tools track the success of your reps with a variety of metrics that measure performance against their peers.

Sales leaderboards encourage healthy competition between reps and boost engagement in contests and other incentives you use to motivate team members.


Tool #3: Rep Tracking

Rep tracking tools allow you to ensure that your reps are where they say they are in real-time. While it can help verify reports, it also can help pinpoint data about the area and its potential for your company.

When managers can track their rep’s activities, they can improve efficiency and monitor whether their sales reps are engaging in the right activities to close deals.


Tool #4: Sales Tracking

Sales tracking offers management and operations key insight into rep and territory performance so you can determine whether activity metrics and performance KPIs are being met.



Costly Door to door Marketing Mistakes

Learn from other people’s experiences and avoid these 7 common canvassing mistakes:

Not using lead management software: If you don’t track every attempt to measure your success rate, the cost of canvassing won’t make sense with today’s competitive landscape.

Not having processes for tracking follow-ups: Not following up costs you. You lose all the investment in your canvassing efforts when qualified leads slip through the cracks.

Not having training and onboarding processes: You must invest in your sales reps, so they can produce new opportunities for you as quickly as possible. An efficient onboarding process will help a new D2D sales professional quickly learn how to be successful.

Not training sales reps to work inbound vs outbound leads: These leads have different motivations. Ignoring that could mean mishandling a potential customer — and losing them to the competition.

No process for following up by phone and email: There are a number of reasons why a prospect might not respond to a first follow-up attempt. Automating the follow-up process helps ensure that “quiet” prospects aren’t forgotten.

No email drip and lead-nurturing campaigns: When you fail to implement an automated lead development campaign, you miss out on collecting data and miss out on potential buyers you could contact.

Not collecting contact information at the door: It is crucial to get the information for any potential follow-up. It is never a complete “No” when you have an email address or phone number.



Ready. Set. Sell.

Door to door sales isn’t for everybody or for every type of business. But if you have the right combination of opportunity and talent, you can use it to take your business development efforts to a new level.


SPOTIO is the #1 field sales engagement and performance management software that will increase revenue, maximize profitability, and boost sales productivity.

Want to see a product demonstration? Click here to see how SPOTIO can take your sales game to the next level.