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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

  • $80,356

    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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Commissioned Sales Associate Career Paths

Commissioned Sales Associate
Account Executive Sales Manager General Manager
Area Manager
7 Yearsyrs
General Manager Security Officer Night Auditor
Assistant General Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Sales Consultant Sales Manager Operations Manager
Branch Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Bank Teller Service Representative Account Executive
Brand Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Sales Manager General Manager Account Executive
Business Development Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Sales Specialist Regional Sales Manager General Manager
Center Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Sales Consultant Senior Sales Representative Account Executive
District Sales Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Sales Manager Operations Manager
General Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Bank Teller Office Manager Sales Consultant
Internet Sales Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Driver Branch Manager District Sales Manager
Merchandising Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Specialist Operations Manager General Manager
Regional Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Sales Specialist Senior Sales Representative Account Executive
Relationship Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Service Representative Specialist Account Manager
Sales Account Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Account Executive Sales Consultant Sales Manager
Sales And Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Office Manager Account Manager Account Executive
Sales Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Service Representative Account Executive
Sales/Marketing
5 Yearsyrs
Specialist Account Manager
Senior Account Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Operations Manager Chief Operating Officer Senior Advisor
Store Leader
5 Yearsyrs
Office Manager General Manager Account Executive
Territory Manager
7 Yearsyrs
General Manager Technician Instructor
Training Manager
5 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Commissioned Sales Associate?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Sales Expert 1.9 years
Sales Associate 1.6 years
Sales Assoc 1.6 years
Top Employers Before
Cashier 7.8%
Internship 6.0%
Manager 3.9%
Teller 3.6%
Server 3.1%
Volunteer 2.0%
Waitress 1.8%
Associate 1.8%
Top Employers After
Cashier 5.1%
Teller 4.7%
Manager 4.1%
Server 3.8%
Internship 3.3%
Volunteer 2.6%
Associate 2.3%
Supervisor 2.1%

Do you work as a Commissioned Sales Associate?

Commissioned Sales Associate Demographics

Gender

Male

49.2%

Female

48.8%

Unknown

2.0%
Ethnicity

White

62.0%

Hispanic or Latino

16.1%

Black or African American

10.9%

Asian

7.0%

Unknown

3.9%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

57.1%

French

9.2%

German

5.0%

Japanese

4.2%

Russian

3.4%

Portuguese

2.5%

Hindi

2.5%

Italian

2.5%

Vietnamese

1.7%

Urdu

1.7%

Arabic

1.7%

Korean

1.7%

Berber

0.8%

Chinese

0.8%

Romanian

0.8%

Ukrainian

0.8%

Bengali

0.8%

Tagalog

0.8%

Thai

0.8%

Gujarati

0.8%
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Commissioned Sales Associate Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

12.8%

Valencia College

8.8%

Virginia Commonwealth University

6.1%

Southern New Hampshire University

6.1%

University of North Texas

4.7%

Kent State University

4.7%

University of Connecticut

4.7%

Marshall University

4.7%

State University of New York Albany

4.7%

San Francisco State University

4.1%

University of Texas at San Antonio

4.1%

Savannah College of Art and Design

4.1%

Pennsylvania State University

4.1%

Florida State University

4.1%

Suffolk County Community College

4.1%

University of Central Florida

4.1%

DePaul University

4.1%

Western Washington University

3.4%

Rochester Institute of Technology

3.4%

West Virginia University

3.4%
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Majors

Business

30.5%

Psychology

6.5%

Marketing

6.4%

Communication

5.0%

Criminal Justice

4.8%

Management

4.7%

Accounting

4.7%

Graphic Design

4.6%

Computer Science

3.4%

General Studies

3.1%

Specialized Sales And Merchandising

3.0%

Nursing

2.8%

Liberal Arts

2.8%

Biology

2.8%

Sociology

2.7%

Political Science

2.6%

Education

2.5%

General Education, Specific Areas

2.5%

English

2.3%

History

2.3%
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Degrees

Bachelors

43.5%

Other

28.7%

Associate

14.5%

Masters

7.0%

Certificate

3.7%

Doctorate

1.1%

Diploma

0.9%

License

0.6%
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Top Skills for A Commissioned Sales Associate

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  1. New Merchandise
  2. Product Knowledge
  3. 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.
  • Maintained friendly and professional customer interactions and shared product knowledge while making personal recommendations.
  • Exceeded sales goals on a regular basis and was awarded two letters of commendation for high-income earner.
  • Computed sales prices, total purchases, and received and processed cash and credit card payments.
  • Demonstrated organization skills by maintaining sales floor.

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Top Commissioned Sales Associate Employers

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Jobs From Top Commissioned Sales Associate Employers

Commissioned Sales Associate Videos

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