If you think that working as a retail salesperson is a walk in the park, think again. As a retail salesperson, you are going to have a wide range of important duties and responsibilities. However, it can be a very rewarding position for the right person. Those who enjoy interacting with others and who have energy to spare tend to make the best salespeople. Before you go looking for work, though, it’s smart to get a basic idea for the types of things that you will be doing. Although duties vary from one store to the next, you can expect to be responsible for all or most of the tasks that are outlined below.
Working with and Engaging Customers
As mentioned above, it pays to have plenty of energy when you are a retail salesperson. That energy will come in handy when it comes to turning prospective customers into paying customers. While you shouldn’t breathe down people’s necks, you should make yourself available to them. Be prepared to interact with customers in a way that will entice them to buy something. Better still, work on developing strategies that will encourage your customers to buy more than they intended to – that’s what will really make the difference.
Customers expect retail salespeople to be knowledgeable about the products that are in their stores. If you haven’t the faintest clue about the merchandise that is on the shelves of your store, you can’t hope to be a very successful salesperson. In some cases, you may come into the job with a lot of knowledge about a company’s products; other times, you might be completely uninformed and may have to take a crash course. If possible, use and handle the merchandise that you sell so that you have a clear understanding of it. You will be more valuable to customers that way.
Unless you somehow land a position that keeps you strictly on the sales floor, you will probably have to man the register from time to time. While technology and point-of-sale systems have streamlined this process by a great degree, they haven’t made it 100% perfect. In fact, your jaw might drop the first time that you lay eyes on the register that you’re going to use. Many times, you will need to learn various codes and techniques in order to use the technology effectively. You’ll be luck if your store is using our small business POS software, Cashier Live. Cashier Live definitely would make your job of conducting transactions a lot easier!
Restocking Shelves and Setting up Displays
Nothing is less appealing than disorderly or mostly empty shelves in a retail store. The presentation of your store’s merchandise is important; as a salesperson, one of your duties will be to keep the shelves stocked and to set up displays. In the latter case, it helps to have a flair for interior design. If you don’t have that, you will have to try and mimic other displays. Over time, you are sure to get the hang of setting up merchandise in a way that is visually pleasing. Just make sure that the shelves don’t go empty on your watch.
It is crucial to stay on top of inventory control when running a retail shop. Nothing is worse than telling a customer that you have an item in stock – only to discover that it’s not on the shelf. Furthermore, keeping up with the inventory will help to keep shoplifting to a minimum. If you have no clue about what’s on your store’s shelves, it’s a lot easier to lose track of things. On top of all of that, performing inventory regularly will make it easier to reorder in a timely manner; that way, your shelves don’t get too bare or too full.
Opening and Closing the Store
Depending on your level of seniority, you may be tasked with opening or closing the store for the day. Special duties usually go along with performing either one of these tasks, and you should be trained accordingly. There will probably be an alarm that you will have to deactivate upon arrival; you will have to set it before leaving if you close the store, too. At the end of the day, you may also have to perform some light cleaning to keep the place looking nice.
As you can see, there’s very little chance for downtime when you are a retail salesperson. Even when there is a lull in foot traffic, there’s sure to be something else to do. If nothing else, you can use quiet times to straighten up so that the store stays continually clean, neat and appealing. The longer you do this kind of work the more efficient you will become. In the beginning, it may seem overwhelming and daunting; after a while, though, it will become like second nature to you. Perform your tasks well enough and you will be on the fast-track to a management position in no time.