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Sales Degree: All information at a glance


The sales degree: Course content, requirements and career opportunities


Become a marketing expert with a sales degree.

Before we discuss the sales degree, let’s start with the basics. What is sales management? The sales department takes products manufactured by a company, and makes them available and attractive for customers. Ultimately, sales management is based on the concept of the marketing mix, which suggests elements of a successful sales strategy. But above all, marketing products is always about efficiently designing sales processes. Anyone who works in the sales department of a company needs the appropriate sales skills to make this happen. That’s why studying sales at CBS makes perfect sense. There are plenty of ways to use a sales degree. For example, after your studies you might work as a sales manager. In that role you will be responsible for the distribution of your client’s products or services. You will have to make sure that the products marketed by your company are sold as widely as possible. And whatever you sell, the sales figures must be right. Achieving solid sales numbers will be your responsibility. Targets also fall within your area of responsibility. This could include achieving constant increases in sales figures. In terms of content, it makes no difference whether you are active in the business-to-business wholesale market, or in the business-to-consumer market selling to end consumers. The bottom line is that sales is about selling and marketing products and services. This must always be viewed from a customer and market-oriented perspective.

Why study a sales degree?

Expert training in the form of a sales degree will become increasingly important in the future. A solid education is the perfect basis to optimize sales processes by implementing specialist knowledge. Sales departments function best with highly educated staff members. And leading companies know that sales degree-level training really matters. The demand for specialists is correspondingly very high. After all, technical progress is booming, and radical changes have also made their way into the sales sector. Networking within the company to manage purchasing is also an important component of a sales degree programme. In addition, products and services are becoming increasingly complex. This means there are hardly any opportunities to gain a professional foothold in the field of sales without a relevant sales degree. Job opportunities are also excellent in sales management due to the prevailing shortage of skilled workers. For instance, after your studies you will find plenty of available sales manager positions. What does a sales manager do? Sales management experts are responsible for the distribution of their client’s products or services. In this role, you will have to make sure that the company’s products or services are sold in a wide range of locations. And you will need to maximize sales numbers for any product. In fact, achieving solid sales numbers will be your main responsibility. And you will need to meet demanding goals like constantly increasing sales. In terms of content, it doesn’t matter whether you are active in the B2B market as a wholesale operator or in the B2C market selling to end consumers. Sales skills are absolutely vital.

What awaits you in the sales degree programme and is it a good fit for you at all?

The content of the programme deals with business administration, marketing and sales. Further sub-areas are:

  • Sales law

  • Sales technology

  • Sales management

  • Business process management

  • Sales concept development

  • International Sales

During your studies, you will learn to further develop existing skills such as openness, communication skills and empathy. You will also gain important insights into the areas of sales, business administration and marketing. The sales degree will teach you how to work optimally at the interface between customers and companies. To this end, you will acquire knowledge during your sales degree regarding how to evaluate and understand the needs of customers. Part of your job is to be able to select the right sales channels. You will learn how to individualize offers and run sales campaigns cost-effectively. The course provides a solid grounding in the skills needed to work as a sales manager. You will be able to distribute your client’s products or services in a wide range of locations. And you will know how to achieve the highest possible sales figures. Sales graduates learn how to work under pressure to meet targets. And graduates are well-placed to occupy positions in the business-to-business or business-to-consumer sectors.

Based on the listed criteria, you should be able to quickly determine whether the sales degree is right for you. Students with the following qualities should choose a sales degree:

  • Economic thinking

  • Analytical thinking

  • Strong communication skills

  • Talent for languages

  • Organizational talent

  • Social competence

  • Empathy

Sales study programmes at CBS




Type of Study:




What are the contents of a sales degree? What do you learn in a sales degree programme?

The content of a sales degree depends primarily on whether you want to study for a sales management bachelor's degree or a master's degree. The masters degree in sales management builds on the bachelor's programme. For this reason, the requirements are also presented separately.


First of all, your sales management bachelor degree will provide you with general business knowledge. This is essential knowledge for starting your sales management career. This consists of the following components:

  • Basics of business administration

  • Business simulation

  • Bookkeeping and accounting

  • Scientific methodology: scientific and empirical work and technical writing

  • Mathematics

  • Statistics

Furthermore, programme-specific teaching content is then added:

  • Strategic sales management

  • Management of the sales organization

  • Negotiation management in sales

  • Modern sales concepts

In addition, there are further interdisciplinary competencies:

  • Business English 1

  • Self-management and learning

  • Communication and conversation skills

  • Diversity Management

  • Leadership behavior & methods

  • Negotiation techniques

  • Practice Transfer

  • Project Management


The master's degree in sales management will deepen the knowledge you have acquired. First of all, you will be taught general economic content in more depth. These consist of the following components:

  • Digital Management

  • Basics of sales & sales management

  • Basics of economics

  • Corporate Social Responsibility

Furthermore, programme-specific teaching content is then added:

  • Fundamentals of Psychology

  • International Sales

  • Advertising Psychology, Communication & Sales Management

  • Psychological action competence

  • Sales psychology research

  • Complaint management & after-sales services

  • Key Account Management

  • Consulting elements in sales & sales negotiations

Additional interdisciplinary competences are then added:

  • Foreign language training

  • Team & self management

  • Leadership behavior

  • Sales training


Procedure and duration

The course and duration of your sales studies depend on whether you want to complete a bachelor's or a master's degree in sales management. This is because the master's programme builds on the bachelor's programme. The characteristics are therefore presented separately below:


The bachelor's programme lasts 6 or 7 semesters. The lectures are held in German. You complete your studies with a Bachelor's thesis for the Bachelor of Arts. Sales studies courses at the CBS can be completed as dual studies. The Sales Management Bachelor combines 2 days of theory every week that you spend on campus, with 3 days of practice spent with your practical company. This gives you the opportunity to immediately combine sales theory and sales practice. kombinieren.


The master's programme lasts 4 or 5 semesters. The lectures are held in German. You complete your studies with your master's thesis for the Master of Arts. The Sales Master's programme at the CBS can be completed as a full-time programme or as a part-time programme. Since the CBS attaches great importance to the practical relevance of the knowledge you have acquired in theory, you should also plan practical components of your studies. Depending on the study model, an internship and an optional semester abroad are part of the study programme. This lets you put your theoretically acquired knowledge into practice and gain valuable work experience. Business projects with practice partners and business simulation games will let you know how well you can apply your knowledge in real world situations.

What are the requirements of a sales degree?

The requirements needed for the sales degree depend on whether you want to take up a bachelor's or a master's degree. This is because the master's programme is a consolidation of the existing knowledge from the bachelor's programme. The requirements for the courses are therefore different. For this reason, the requirements are also presented separately.


As a personal prerequisite, you should have a general university entrance qualification or a full university of applied sciences entrance qualification. Degrees from foreign schools are also recognized, such as Matura, A-Levels, General Certificate of Education or the IB Diploma. For proof of English language proficiency, you will need to present a certificate of English language proficiency that is no more than two years old. Alternatively, before starting a sales management bachelor degree you have the possibility to take the free online English test of the CBS.


Admission requirement for a Masters degree in sales management at the CBS is a first academic degree (Bachelor, Diplom, Magister) from a recognized German or international university, university of applied sciences or university of cooperative education with a final grade of at least "good". If this grade point average was not achieved in the first degree programme, a separate admission procedure must be completed. The first degree should have been taken in a field of economics and should comprise a total of at least 180 ECTS credits.


The masters degree in sales management can be studied completely NC-free. A numerus clausus is not obligatory.

All information about the application procedure and the requirements at the CBS can be found here

Forms of study: Alternatives to face-to-face studies

It is common and usual to study a sales degree as a full-time, face-to-face course. This allows you to fully concentrate on the subject matter and the requirements of the sales degree study programme. The programme is demanding and takes time. But alternatives are available if you want to obtain a degree in sales.

It is common and usual to study a sales degree as a part-time, face-to-face course. This allows you to fully concentrate on the subject matter and the requirements of the sales degree study programme. The programme is demanding and takes time. But alternatives are available if you want to obtain a degree in sales.

You can also choose the sales studies as a dual form of study at the CBS. In this form of sales degree, you learn the theory around sales at university. At the same time, you can work in your dream job and gain practical experience. Dual sales degree courses of study are usually financed by the employer. In addition, you will receive a monthly salary with which you can cover your living expenses.

A dual study program at the CBS is very popular and is becoming more and more important. This is because at the CBS you acquire the knowledge of a renowned business school and at the same time gain professional experience with employers. Companies support the form of a dual study program. This is because they seek specialists and managers who can start work directly after their sales degree without a training period. For students, the dual study program has the advantage that you will be ready for your first job right after graduation and will also be financially secure during your studies.

A full-time sales degree program at CBS entails a time commitment that is similar to a full-time job. During your semester hours you will attend lectures, courses or seminars. You also have to prepare and follow up on the learning material. Sales degree lectures are usually held from Monday to Friday. In addition, block courses are also held, which then take place on weekends. You will also have to study at home. This is because reports, homework or preparing for exams will be part of your everyday life.

What are my career prospects as a sales manager? What does a sales manager do?

After your sales degree studies you can work as a sales manager. In a sales management position, you are responsible for selling the products or services of your client. While working in sales management you will have to make sure that the company’s products or services are sold extensively. And you will have to ensure that the sales figures add up. Achieving solid sales numbers will be your main responsibility, and meeting goals like constantly increasing sales figures also falls within your area of responsibility. In terms of content, it doesn’t matter whether you work in the business-to-business wholesale sector, or in the business-to-consumer market selling to end consumers. 

In sales management job advertisements, open positions are usually referred to as Junior, Senior or Area Sales Manager. Sales refers to sales or distribution of products. This means that all of the examples just mentioned are sales management positions. These roles always involve the sale of goods, products or services to intermediaries or to end customers, depending on whether the company is a wholesaler or a retailer. Another job title besides sales manager is key account manager. Here, account management always refers to very high-turnover customers. In many cases, a key account manager often only takes care of one or two important customers over a very long period of time.

You can find more information about professions in sales and the tasks of a sales manager here.

What is a typical sales manager salary?

A sales manager salary depends on whether you are employed in a medium-sized company or have a job with a large corporation. Large corporations usually pay higher salaries to sales management professionals. An entry-level sales manager can expect an annual gross salary of around 60,000 euros after completing  their sales degree studies. A few years of service will lead to a higher salary due to professional experience. Depending on professional experience and qualifications, the annual sales manager salary can then range from 70,000 euros gross to around 81,000 euros gross. Due to the existing shortage of skilled workers, sales degree qualifications are very welcome on the labor market. Additional qualifications following a sales degree usually increase the salary.

Would you like to know more about your earning potential as a sales manager? On our Sales Manager Salary page, you will find all the information you need about the earnings opportunities in this profession and learn which factors have an influence on the salary.

Where can I study a sales degree?

If you would like to complete a sales degree, there are different locations available at the CBS. The CBS offers sales degree courses in Cologne, Aachen, Mainz, Berlin/Potsdam, Brühl, Neuss and Solingen.


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This is What Our Students Say 

Philip Kollmann
Project Manager
Wayne´s Coffee

"Especially the soft skill courses have been of great help for my performance in job interviews. Through my work in the Finance and Business Club I have built up a broad network and acquired project management skills that have enabled me to score points with companies."

Katrin Rieger
Bereichsdirektorin Reisevertrieb Deutschland / Vice President Sales
HanseMerkur Krankenversicherung

"The practical learning in small groups prepared me optimally for today's project and team work. The CBS provided me with the decisive soft skills and current knowledge from the world of business."

Christopher Rosenbaum
Ernst & Young GmbH

"The Management Studies programme prepares you thoroughly for the tasks of a consultant. In particular, the development of presentation techniques as well as analytical thinking is of enormous importance in the everyday life of a consultant."

Oliver Kiderle
EMEA Regional Product Expert
Google Inc.

"The focus on internationality and practical skills have had a very positive influence on my development at Google. Especially the structured and very versatile project work, which is often found at a private school, was extremely helpful."

Kalle Kenkel
Commercial Excellence Manager
GE Healthcare

"My studies at CBS prepared me for a career in today's dynamic, global work environment. As one's origin and physical location become less and less decisive, it has become increasingly important to have a multinational network and adapt quickly to various cultures and environments."

Neil Jordaan
Global Digital Content Manager

"Many professors shared their professional business experience with us in class and were able to illustrate dry theory with practical examples. I also enjoyed the international atmosphere on campus."

Patrick Stein
Head of Human Resources
Boston Consulting Group

"The strongly practice-oriented studies and the international orientation of the CBS, as well as the lectures held in English, were an absolutely necessary basis for starting a career with a renowned, international company."

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Mirjam Zimmermann

Study advisory: Campus Mainz
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Study advisory 
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