Salesmanship is a personal action or effort on the part of an individual which is intended to bring about the sale of the goods for sale. More broadly speaking, salesmanship is the art of selling something to somebody, and everything which contributes to the consummation of this exchange is necessarily a part of salesmanship.

Salesmanship differs from demonstration in that the latter may not include the former, and it is like demonstration because good salesmanship usually includes some form of demonstration. Salesmanship is not unlike the plea of the lawyer before the court or the jury. Both contain arguments; and, in both cases, the presenter, either of arguments or of goods or of both, is trying to make the party address do what he asks him to do.

On the one hand there is something for sale, whether it be a life insurance policy, an automobile, a suit of clothes, or a barrel of potatoes. The owner of what is for sale, or his representative, desires to sell what he has to somebody who wants it or can be made to want it. To do this, he employs each method which will in any way influence the buyer, including printed matter, e-mail, websites, pay-per-click advertising, television commercials, radio ads, handsome office fittings, and, most important of all , a proper presentation of the thing for sale adding personality and voice to the selling argument.

The salesman exists for two reasons: first, custom; Secondly, because it is obvious that even the best informed buyer can not know everything, and the well- posted salesman is in a position to give him information about the article for sale. There is opportunity for a discussion person-to-person, and for the presentation of argument; and this information and these events can not be given with any degree of fullness by the printed page or advertisement. Or, if they could be, they would not even take the place of personal information-giving and custom-made argument.

Salesmanship can not be analyzed with chemical or other exactness. To define it, to separate it into its component parts, would be as difficult as it would be to analyze ability and to tell what it consist of. Yet we all know what salesmanship is, and we are able to measure the results of its qualities and quantities.