CAT 2023 » Difference Between » Selling and Marketing

Selling and Marketing

Selling is the process where the company liquidates its existing stock whereas marketing is more of a process revolving around identifying the needs and wants of the customers and making an effort to fulfil them, promoting the brand at the same time.

Have you ever received a phone call from a salesman trying to sell you the products by describing the unique attributes to you? Has it ever happened that you went to a brand store and the salesman present over there convinced you to buy something from the store itself? The process where the sales representatives try and liquidate the existing stock of the company into money is called making a sale or selling a product. 

Now move on to another scenario. You’re scrolling on social media and coming across a post from a food delivery coampany which reminds you that you’re hungry or you’re craving something. The post mentions that there is a limited discount period going on which will give you 40% off on any order you make through the app. You get persuaded and place a food order through the app. Similarly, you must have come across several promotional posts/messages/emails conveying the ongoing offers and discounts on various brands, apps etc. The process wherein the brand tries to identify the prospective needs and wants of the consumers in order to satisfy them through promoting their own products is called marketing.


Selling is an essential activity that businesses undertake to generate revenue. It is a transaction whereon there is an exchange of goods for the value of money. The sales representative tries to convince the prospective buyers about how the product will add value to their lives and exchange the goods for an equal value of money. There are some products that do not need persuasion at all. For example, let’s take the case of medicines. Being an essential commodity, the pharmaceutical companies hardly need to advertise their products for making a sale. The sales representative simply identifies the area wherein the sales can be increased and give discount offers to the pharmacies in order to sell their products. Now take an example of a diamond necklace. Being a luxury good, the customers often need to be convinced that the diamond necklace will add to their collection and buying from this brand will get them a good deal over it. The sales representatives will have to put in extra efforts in order to liquidate the stock of the company. 

Apart from convincing the prospective buyers in order to make a sales transaction, the sales representatives also put focus on building the long term relationship with the customers. Generating sales leads, converting those leads into a long-term client base is few of the things every salesman is focused upon. 


Marketing and selling are more interconnected than what one might believe in. If done properly, marketing will help in generating exceptional sales leads. Marketing is the process wherein the brand identifies the needs and wants of a customer base and converts the same into a sales transaction for a company, at the same time promoting its image. 

Unlike selling, marketing is not just about generating sales leads to liquidating the existing stock of the company. Marketing is more focused on developing the brand’s name in the eyes of the customers and promoting it. Marketing is more like an umbrella term for all the processes involving advertising the brand, making a sale, improving relations with customers etc. marketing is an essential process that is undertaken right from the beginning of establishing a brand. Nowadays, marketing is undertaken through several channels like social media, television, email marketing, newspapers, magazines etc.

Difference between Marketing and Selling 


Selling: Selling involves converting and liquidating the existing stock of the company to generate revenue. It involves convincing the customers on how this brand is better than the others and making a sale transaction that involves the exchange of the good for an equal value of the money.

Marketing: Marketing is an umbrella term that also focuses on increasing the sales leads of the company. However, the main motive of the marketing process is to identify the needs and wants of the customers in a quest to fulfil them with one’s own products at the same time increasing the brand awareness in the customer base.

View of the Business

Selling: The process of selling views businesses as a medium to produce more goods or generate more services in order to increase the sales transaction and generate more revenue for the firm. The selling process sees businesses as profit-making entities whose only motive is to sell more and more products in order to increase the customers base.

Marketing: The process of marketing sees businesses as entities existing to identify the needs of the customers base and try to fulfil them through introducing innovative products while earning profits in order to stay in the market. The marketing process focuses on building brand awareness in the prospective customers base in order to establish goodwill of the firm in the market.

Focus on Market Segmentation

Selling: The sales representatives never put much focus on market segmentation as their major aim is to sell the products as many as they can. Usually, the sales team identifies potential areas wherein they can sell the products at an increasing rate and they focus on the same areas unless and until they can generate a new lead.

Marketing: The process of marketing pays extra attention to the marketing segmentation obtained through market surveys. It tries and moulds the existing product range and promotes the same keeping in mind the demographic composition of the existing customer base. As per the objective of the marketing team to identify the needs of the customers, the identification of proper market segmentation becomes an important task for the same. 


Selling: The emphasis of the selling process is on generating increased revenue for the firm and increasing the existing customer base for the same.

Marketing: The emphasis of marketing is on identifying the needs of the customer base and fulfilling the same while promoting the brand image.


The process of selling and marketing, although undertaken separately, are interconnected. Marketing can be termed as an umbrella term whose secondary objective can be generating more sales leads. While selling is more focused on generating more revenue, marketing focuses on increasing the brand awareness of the firm.


Frequently Asked Questions

Get answers to the most common queries related to the CAT Examination Preparation.

Which process focuses more on increasing brand awareness?

Answer. Marketing focuses more on promoting the brand while identifying the needs of the customers and fulfilling th...Read full

Which process is undertaken right from the beginning of the business?

Answer. Marketing is the process undertaken right from the starting up of the business.

What are the various incentives which are provided by the sales teams to increase sales revenue?

Answer. The various sales incentives provided by the sales teams are cash discounts, free shipping, gift cards, free...Read full