The sales and marketing departments are vital functional units of any business. However, it is not uncommon to see people confusing both to mean the same thing or blatantly showing how one of these would effortlessly perform the function of the other.

This is the reason for this post; to enlighten you about the differences between these two functional departments of a business.

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For starters;

Let’s define both terms.

What is sales?

Sales offer a direct link between the products of a business and the customer. Its goal is to convert leads or prospects into forking out their money to buy your offer.

What is marketing?

Marketing is about making change happen. It is all about identifying a group of people who need your offer and showing them how your offer would help them achieve their desired result.

Simply put, marketing is about creating awareness about your product.


Let’s consider the differences between sales and marketing from the following perspective.


For sales, the goal is quite simple. Get a handful of people who need your product and use the resources available to you for converting them into buyers. The marketing process, on the other hand, relies on 4Ps, i.e. Place, pricing, promotion, and product. It is about getting info about your offer to as many people as possible.


If you are going to close any sale, then it is one customer per time. This means sales take a customer-centric approach. Marketing, on the other hand, flourishes with a large audience. After all, the goal of marketing is to spread awareness about your brand.

Target market

The target market for the sales unit is people who have already passed through the marketing process of a business i.e. leads. 

Marketing focuses on acquiring new prospects for the business.


It may be difficult to measure the return on some marketing efforts. However, the advancement in technology has made it less of a problem as you can monitor the engagement of your audience with your marketing materials using various tools.


An increase in market share is how you measure the progress of marketing on a broader scale.

The ROI of sales is pretty straightforward to measure. What is the revenue coming through to the business from their sales effort?


There are various strategies to get the word out about your business, i.e. to fulfill the goals of marketing. Some of them are email marketing, blogging, media buys, jingles, and so and so forth. 

For sales to boom. Some of the strategies deployed are offering discounts/coupons, creating incentive programs, and referral packages, among many others.

How Are Marketing And Sales Integrated?

Sales and marketing cannot exist in isolation. Each needs the other to fully function at capacity. Sales start where marketing ends.

Which is better between sales and marketing?

None. Both involve activities that are consistent with maximizing the profit of a business.

By Manali