So I'm looking for some personal experiences on compensation for sales representatives from start-ups and/or established corporations. I've looked at many of the salary information websites but I'm trying to get a better sense for the norm in this area. Specially I am interested in percentage base vs. percentage commission. I am also interested in models used for commissions and typical values for base salary and annual commissions. And finally the industry/sub-industry these figures are for.
Don't start with what others pay. Look at your sales goals, size/value of the expected sale, profitability of the sale, expected frequency of sales, the length of the sales cycle, complexity of the sale, one-time sale vs. billable service.
Once you have these answers, conduct a compensation survey relevant to your business and product. If you are startup, lean toward high commissions. Consider who you hire. Are they highly experienced sales people or inexperienced.
For startups, I strongly recommend hiring someone with the ability to develop a sales process and organization. This is a senior management position. It is this person who goes out and makes the initial sales. You get this person with non-standard pay; e. g. stock options, equity, other monetary awards for attaining the company's goals. Once there is a base of business, hire sales people.