Product Management Salaries: How Much Does a Product Manager Make?

A product manager must wear many hats to connect business strategy and customer desires. So how much do they get paid to do that?

portrait of Mackenzie Maxwell
by Mackenzie Maxwell

Published November 15, 2022

Edited by Margaret Weinhold
Share this Article


Ever wonder exactly what a product manager does? Well, they do more than you probably think.

Product managers oversee the creation and improvement of products. They work in cycles that include learning about customer needs and prioritizing those requirements. They also work within the organization to make products that meet customer needs and then launch new products or features.

www.bestcolleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Ready to start your journey?

Because of the constant assessment (and reassessment) of customers' needs, this job requires excellent communication and decision-making skills.

According to Payscale, the average product manager makes around $90,300 per year as of October 2022. But many product managers choose to specialize in one industry. For product managers in the software industry, Payscale reports the average product manager salary is $101,320.

So how can you break into product management? Well, there are many ways to become a product manager. Some begin in the field directly after college. Others transfer into product management after years of experience in a related field.

What Is the Average Product Manager Salary?

Product managers can work in any industry with products, but the role is best known in the tech industry. On average, product managers in the software industry make more than the average for all industries combined. Product managers who take leadership roles can earn much higher salaries on average.

Highest-Paying Product Management Jobs

Product managers can gain certifications and experience to move up within a product organization, which leads to higher average salaries.

Product Management Job Average Annual Salary
Software Product Manager $101,320
Senior Product Manager $128,520
Product Management Director $149,720
Vice President of Product Management $172,180
Chief Product Officer $197,290

Data from Payscale
Accurate as of Oct. 2022

The Highest-Paying Cities for Product Managers

Software Product Manager Senior Product Manager Product Management Director Vice President of Product Management Chief Product Officer

San Francisco, California

San Jose, California

New York, New York

Charlotte, North Carolina

Seattle, Washington

San Jose, California

San Francisco, California

Seattle, Washington

Plano, Texas

Los Angeles, California

San Jose, California

San Francisco, California

New York, New York

Seattle, Washington

Boston, Massachusetts

San Jose, California

San Francisco, California

San Diego, California

Seattle, Washington

Boston, Massachusetts

San Mateo, California

Seattle, Washington

Denver, Colorado

San Francisco, California

New York, New York

Data from Payscale
Accurate as of Oct. 2022

Job Growth for Product Managers

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) does not currently track data for product managers. After all, project management is a relatively new career path. But some inferences can be made about product management jobs based on similar positions.

The BLS predicts that job growth for computer and information systems managers will grow 16% between 2021 and 2031, which is faster than average. The BLS also projects growth for marketing managers to be at 10% over the same time.

Since product managers serve as a bridge between marketing and tech in many organizations, job growth for product managers may be similar to these careers.

What Product Management Field Pays the Most?

Product management is a new and evolving field that started in software companies. As such, product managers in software roles make more on average than the average for product managers across all industries.

These professionals can start right out of college or after several years of experience in a related field. Plus, product managers can earn more as they climb the corporate ladder and oversee other product managers.

More Education Leads to a Higher Product Manager Salary

Product Manager Bachelor's Degree Salary

Product managers can come from various educational and professional backgrounds. If you want to go into product management right after graduation, you can major in business management or a closely related field.

Some engineering graduates become product managers in the software industry as well. Professionals who are looking to switch careers come to product management from all sorts of backgrounds. They may have experience in client relations, engineering, content management, business strategy, marketing, and more.

Product Manager, Software

Salary: $101,320

These professionals oversee product development and improvement processes. They facilitate communication between stakeholders such as engineers, customer success teams, and executives.

They take customer feedback and plan timelines for improvements on a product. This position is well-suited for someone who is task-oriented, works well in a team, and enjoys taking charge in meetings.

Customer Success Manager

Salary: $71,330

Experience in customer success can lead to a career in product management. Customer success managers understand customer needs and work to resolve any issues that arise.

Over time, they develop a deep understanding of the customer's needs, making them excellent product managers.

Software Engineer

Salary: $89,170

Software engineers work with programmers and designers to create software. Candidates typically need a bachelor's degree in software engineering or something similar. With time, they gain a deep understanding of the product and can become product managers.

Product Manager Master's Degree Salary

A master's degree can help you break into the product management field. Several top business schools offer master's degrees in product management.

Prospective product managers may also choose to earn an MBA or similar degree. You should check and make sure your program includes courses in project management and communications.

Senior Product Managers

Salary: $128,520

Like their junior counterparts, senior product managers work at the intersection of customer needs, business plans, and product development. These senior professionals may work on more complex or high-profile products than their junior colleagues.

A master's degree can help you gain the deeper understanding that these product managers need.

Product Management Director

Salary: $149,720

These management professionals oversee a team of product managers within an organization. They direct all product development at a higher level than product managers, who get into the details of each project.

Product management directors support their direct reports by answering their questions and guiding their career growth.

Product Marketing Manager

Salary: $94,660

Graduates who specialize in marketing may find work as product marketing managers. These professionals work alongside product managers and other members of the same team.

They create and implement strategies for marketing new products or improvements to existing products.

Frequently Asked Questions About Product Manager Salaries

What is product management?

Product management functions within an organization by overseeing the lifecycle of the organization's products. This unique part of an organization brings together professionals from design, engineering, data science, content, marketing, sales, and other departments.

It ensures all departments are on the same page so that products deploy on time and with minimal bugs. And when it's time for a product to come off the market, the product part of an organization ensures a smooth transition.

What does a product manager do?

A product manager guides a product through ideation, production, launch, and improvement. To do this, a product manager must balance the wishes of a product's customers, the organization's business needs, and the teams' capacities.

Their day-to-day schedules involve meetings and communication with various stakeholders. Product managers seek out information about what customers need and want in a product, then prioritize projects based on that information.

How do I become a product manager?

There are many ways to become a product manager. Some product managers get into the field right out of college. They typically hold a bachelor's or master's degree in business or a related field.

Product management is also an excellent field for anyone looking to change jobs. You can transfer to product management from many backgrounds, including engineering, software development, business analysis, project management, marketing, and content strategy.

What's the best degree for product management?

Students who want to work in product management directly after graduation should consider business degrees. Some schools have bachelor's or master's programs for aspiring product managers.

If you want to go into software product management, you may want to major in software design, development, or engineering. But whatever degree you choose, you should ensure you gain skills in customer relations, communication, and project management.

How long does it take to become a product manager?

There's no one path to becoming a product manager, so there's no set timeline. Some people go into product management after four years of college. Others may spend a decade or more working in a related field before working as a product manager.

Certification courses can help aspiring product managers break into the field. These programs take about a year or less to complete.

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Compare your school options.

View the most relevant school for your interests and compare them by tuition, programs, acceptance rate, and other factors important to find your college home.