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Become A Commissioned Sales Associate

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Working As A Commissioned Sales Associate

  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public
  • Selling or Influencing Others
  • Getting Information
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
  • Deal with People

  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • $83,158

    Average Salary

What Does A Commissioned Sales Associate Do

Retail sales workers include both those who sell retail merchandise, such as clothing, furniture, and cars, (called retail salespersons) and those who sell spare and replacement parts and equipment, especially car parts (called parts salespersons). Both types of workers help customers find the products they want and process customers’ payments.

Duties

Retail sales workers typically do the following:

  • Greet customers and offer them assistance
  • Recommend merchandise based on customers’ wants and needs
  • Explain the use and benefit of merchandise to customers
  • Answer customers’ questions
  • Show how merchandise works, if applicable
  • Add up customers’ total purchases and accept payment
  • Inform customers about current sales, promotions, and policies about payments and exchanges

The following are examples of types of retail sales workers:

Retail salespersons work in stores where they sell goods, such as books, cars, clothing, cosmetics, electronics, furniture, lumber, plants, shoes, and many other types of merchandise.

In addition to helping customers find and select items to buy, many retail salespersons process the payment for the sale, which typically involves operating cash registers.

After taking payment for the purchases, retail salespersons may bag or package the purchases.

Depending on the hours they work, retail salespersons may have to open or close cash registers. This includes counting the money in the register and separating charge slips, coupons, and exchange vouchers. They may also make deposits at a cash office.

For information about other workers who receive and disburse money, see the profile on cashiers.

In addition, retail salespersons may help stock shelves or racks, arrange for mailing or delivery of purchases, mark price tags, take inventory, and prepare displays.

For some retail sales jobs, particularly those involving expensive and complex items, retail sales workers need special knowledge or skills. For example, those who sell cars must be able to explain the features of various models, manufacturers’ specifications, different types of options on the car, financing available, and the details of associated warranties.

In addition, retail sales workers must recognize security risks and thefts and understand their organization’s procedures for handling thefts—procedures that may include notifying security guards or calling police.

Parts salespersons sell spare and replacement parts and equipment, especially car parts. Most work in either automotive parts stores or automobile dealerships. They take customers’ orders, inform customers of part availability and price, and take inventory.

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How To Become A Commissioned Sales Associate

Typically, there are no formal education requirements for retail sales workers. Most receive on-the-job training, which usually lasts a few days to a few months.

Education

Although retail or parts sales positions usually have no formal education requirements, some employers prefer applicants who have a high school diploma or equivalent, especially employers who sell technical products or “big-ticket” items, such as electronics or cars.

Training

Most retail sales workers receive on-the-job training, which usually lasts a few days to a few months. In small stores, an experienced employee often trains newly hired workers. In large stores, training programs are more formal and usually conducted over several days.

During training sessions, topics often include customer service, security, the store’s policies and procedures, and how to operate the cash register.

Depending on the type of product they are selling, employees may be given additional specialized training. For example, salespersons working in cosmetics get instruction on the types of products the store offers and for whom the cosmetics would be most beneficial. Likewise, those who sell computers may be instructed on the technical differences between computer products.

Because providing exceptional service to customers is a priority for many employers, employees often get periodic training to update and refine their skills.

Advancement

Retail sales workers typically have opportunities to advance to supervisory or managerial positions. Some employers want candidates for managerial positions to have a college degree.

As sales workers gain experience and seniority, they often move into positions that have greater responsibility and may be given their choice of departments in which to work. This opportunity often means moving to positions with higher potential earnings and commissions. The highest earnings potential usually involves selling “big-ticket” items—such as cars, jewelry, furniture, and electronics. These positions often require workers with extensive knowledge of the product and an excellent talent for persuasion.

Important Qualities

Customer-service skills. Retail sales workers must be responsive to the wants and needs of customers. They should explain the product options available to customers and make appropriate recommendations.

Interpersonal skills. A friendly and outgoing personality is important for these workers because the job requires almost constant interaction with people. 

Math skills. Retail sales workers must have the ability to calculate price totals, discounts, and change owed to customers.

Persistence. A large number of attempted sales may not be successful, so sales workers should not be discouraged easily. They must start each new sales attempt with a positive attitude.

Selling skills. Retail sales workers must be persuasive when interacting with customers. They must clearly and effectively explain the benefits of the merchandise.

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Commissioned Sales Associate jobs

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Average Length of Employment
Sales Person 2.2 years
Sales Assoc 2.1 years
Sales Clerk 2.0 years
Sales Expert 1.9 years
Sales Associate 1.6 years
Top Employers Before
Cashier 7.5%
Internship 6.0%
Manager 4.2%
Server 2.8%
Waitress 1.9%
Associate 1.8%
Top Employers After
Cashier 4.7%
Manager 4.3%
Internship 3.4%
Server 3.4%
Associate 2.3%

Commissioned Sales Associate Demographics

Gender

Male

49.6%

Female

48.5%

Unknown

1.9%
Ethnicity

White

79.8%

Hispanic or Latino

11.1%

Asian

6.5%

Unknown

2.0%

Black or African American

0.6%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

56.6%

French

9.7%

German

5.3%

Japanese

4.4%

Russian

3.5%

Portuguese

2.7%

Hindi

2.7%

Urdu

1.8%

Arabic

1.8%

Korean

1.8%

Italian

1.8%

Berber

0.9%

Ukrainian

0.9%

Chinese

0.9%

Gujarati

0.9%

Romanian

0.9%

Vietnamese

0.9%

Bengali

0.9%

Tagalog

0.9%

Thai

0.9%
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Commissioned Sales Associate Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

12.1%

Valencia College

8.6%

Virginia Commonwealth University

6.4%

Southern New Hampshire University

5.7%

University of North Texas

5.0%

State University of New York Albany

5.0%

Kent State University

5.0%

University of Connecticut

5.0%

Marshall University

5.0%

San Francisco State University

4.3%

Savannah College of Art and Design

4.3%

Florida State University

4.3%

DePaul University

4.3%

University of Texas at San Antonio

3.6%

Southern Illinois University Carbondale

3.6%

Pennsylvania State University

3.6%

Rochester Institute of Technology

3.6%

California State University - Northridge

3.6%

University of Central Florida

3.6%

Eastern Kentucky University

3.6%
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Majors

Business

31.3%

Psychology

6.7%

Marketing

6.6%

Accounting

5.0%

Communication

4.9%

Criminal Justice

4.7%

Management

4.6%

Graphic Design

4.5%

Computer Science

3.5%

General Studies

3.0%

Biology

2.9%

Nursing

2.8%

Liberal Arts

2.8%

Specialized Sales And Merchandising

2.6%

Sociology

2.5%

General Education, Specific Areas

2.5%

Education

2.4%

English

2.4%

Political Science

2.2%

History

2.2%
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Degrees

Bachelors

43.8%

Other

28.2%

Associate

14.4%

Masters

7.3%

Certificate

3.8%

Doctorate

1.3%

Diploma

0.8%

License

0.5%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills for A Commissioned Sales Associate

NewMerchandiseExtensiveProductKnowledgeMonthlySalesGoalsSalesFloorCommissionSalesAppliancesCreditCardTransactionsElectronicsFurnitureEnsureCustomerSatisfactionMenJewelryShoeDepartmentCustomerRelationshipsPOSTopSalesHardwareAdditionalCreditApplicationsNewSalesAssociates

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Top Commissioned Sales Associate Skills

  1. New Merchandise
  2. Extensive Product Knowledge
  3. Monthly Sales Goals
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Sign customers up for My Personal Book to keep customers informed of upcoming promotions, customer events, and new merchandise.
  • Developed extensive product knowledge by reading current vendor tags and pamphlets.
  • Achieved monthly sales goals, and warranty goals for over 12 months straight.
  • Maintained the sales floor * Provided quality customer service * Meet daily sales goals
  • Commission Sales Associate in various departments, which consisted of Lawn and Garden, Fitness Equipment, Tools, and Paint.

Top Commissioned Sales Associate Employers

Commissioned Sales Associate Videos

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