Retail Associate Job Description

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Table Of Contents

Learn about the essential requirements, obligations, responsibilities, and skills that are helpful in a retail associate job description.

Retail associates, also known as sales associates, work with customers to help them make purchases, return an item, or answer questions about store policies. They also create a welcoming shopping environment by greeting and conversing with customers.

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Retail Associate Job Description Template

We are looking to bring on more retail associates to help create the perfect customer experience in our store. During a typical shift, you will be responsible for helping customers with questions or concerns, completing transactions, and restocking the floor with products. Retail associates help us keep our customers happy by having a positive attitude and always being willing to help when needed. A successful retail associate can work well independently and collaboratively, have prior experience working in a customer-facing role, and have basic computer skills.

Retail Associate Responsibilities

  • Greeting customers when they enter the store and thanking them when they leave
  • Helping customers locate the items they wish to purchase
  • Answering customer questions about purchases, returns, or store policy
  • Working with management to achieve sales goals
  • Cleaning, including tidying up throughout the shift
  • Assessing inventory and restocking products on the show floor as needed
  • Promoting store offers
  • Handling transactions with customers, including running the cash register and sales wrap
  • Providing advice and recommendations to customers about products

Retail Associate Requirements 

  • High school diploma, GED, or equivalent education
  • Ability to work well in a fast-paced environment
  • Experience working with cash registers
  • Experience with customer service
  • Solid understanding of store policies and products

Retail Associate Duties And Responsibilities

Being a retail associate involves handling multiple responsibilities during a shift. Here are a few.

Greeting customers when they enter the store and thanking them when they leave 

Retail associates are responsible for creating a comfortable shopping environment for customers. While this can lead to more sales, it also gives the store a positive reputation and gives customers an incentive to shop again. A positive attitude and strong customer service skills can help with this task.

Answering customer questions about purchases, returns, or store policy 

Customers almost always have a question about their purchase, especially if they are trying to return something. Being able to explain a store’s policy is essential to avoid problems. Also, most stores also have managers on-site that can assist if a retail associate can’t answer what the customer is asking.

Cleaning, including tidying up throughout the shift 

Having a clean store is also part of creating a good customer experience. If a store is messy, disorganized, or chaotic, it gives off a wrong impression. Sales associates should constantly look for ways to improve the cleanliness of the store, especially during periods when there are a low amount of customers shopping. Time management and being able to work efficiently can help a sales associate be successful.

Related: Highest Paying Retail Jobs

Handling transactions with customers, including running the cash register and sales wrap

A sales associate’s primary responsibility is to manage the cash register to complete customer transactions. This includes cash, credit card, or check (if applicable) purchases. Basic math skills like making changes are perhaps the most valuable skill to have for running a register. Good professionalism is also helpful, especially since customers can become frustrated if something doesn’t go right with their transaction.

Working with management to achieve sales goals 

Every store sets sales goals to help them get their desired revenue. Whether these are set by the corporate office, general manager, or a lesser management position, they are extremely important to the overall success of a store. A retail associate will work to promote products, which will help drive sales. Experience in customer service and retail sales can make this responsibility easier.

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Retail Associate Salary And Job Outlook

Median National Salary: $32,589/year

Education Required: High school diploma, GED, or equivalent

Number of Jobs: 3,847,500

Job Growth 2022 – 2032: -2% (Decline)

The Bottom Line

Being a retail associate is a great first job and an opportunity to grow with a company.  They are essential to helping a company achieve its sales goals and to create a welcoming environment for customers. Many retail sales associates move up to management or use their experience to land another role, such as marketing, higher-level sales, or buying.

To see where employers are searching for candidates, check our list of the best free job posting sites. If you want to add a retail associate to your team, post your retail associate job description on ZipRecruiter today!