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Become A Retail Service Specialist

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Working As A Retail Service Specialist

  • 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 Retail Service Specialist 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 Retail Service Specialist

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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Retail Service Specialist jobs

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Average Length of Employment
Service Specialist 2.7 years
Selling Specialist 2.5 years
Specialist 2.5 years
Retail Sales Lead 2.4 years
Retail Sales Clerk 2.2 years
Retail Specialist 2.2 years
Retail Clerk 2.0 years
Sales Clerk 2.0 years
Service Cashier 1.9 years
Sales Associate 1.6 years
Retail Cashier 1.4 years
Top Employers Before
Cashier 13.3%
Manager 4.4%
Technician 3.1%
Driver 2.7%
Supervisor 2.7%
Top Employers After
Mechanic 4.4%
Cashier 4.4%
Driver 3.8%
Internship 3.8%

Retail Service Specialist Demographics

Gender

Male

65.1%

Female

33.5%

Unknown

1.4%
Ethnicity

White

77.1%

Hispanic or Latino

15.5%

Asian

5.8%

Unknown

1.1%

Black or African American

0.5%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

57.9%

Romanian

10.5%

Russian

10.5%

Chinese

5.3%

Carrier

5.3%

Cantonese

5.3%

Mandarin

5.3%
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Retail Service Specialist Education

Schools

Universal Technical Institute

15.1%

University of Phoenix

11.0%

University of Alabama

6.8%

University of Washington

5.5%

Texas Tech University

5.5%

University of North Texas

5.5%

University of Arkansas-Fort Smith

5.5%

Central New Mexico Community College

4.1%

Palomar College

4.1%

Tarleton State University

4.1%

El Paso Community College

4.1%

Chattahoochee Valley Community College

4.1%

University of Central Arkansas

4.1%

Texas A&M University

4.1%

University of Maryland - University College

2.7%

Arizona State University

2.7%

San Juan College

2.7%

American University

2.7%

University of South Carolina - Columbia

2.7%

Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College

2.7%
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Majors

Business

18.5%

Automotive Technology

17.7%

Criminal Justice

7.0%

Computer Science

5.3%

Accounting

5.3%

General Studies

4.5%

Mechanical Engineering

4.5%

Electrical Engineering

4.1%

Marketing

4.1%

Management

3.7%

Psychology

3.7%

Medical Assisting Services

3.3%

Finance

2.9%

Communication

2.5%

Health Care Administration

2.5%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.1%

Nursing

2.1%

English

2.1%

Mechanical Engineering Technology

2.1%

Information Technology

2.1%
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Degrees

Other

31.5%

Bachelors

30.8%

Associate

20.6%

Certificate

7.5%

Masters

5.3%

Diploma

2.4%

Doctorate

1.2%

License

0.7%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills for A Retail Service Specialist

AutoPartsCustomerServiceSkillsRetailServiceBankDepositsSuperviseCorrectPartsStoreAppearanceInventoryControlPOSMonthlySalesGoalsCustomerSatisfactionCycleCountsCustomerInquiriesStoreOperationsRightPartsCompanyPolicySalesFloorRetailCustomersDailyTasksReplacementParts

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Top Retail Service Specialist Skills

  1. Auto Parts
  2. Customer Service Skills
  3. Retail Service
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Worked in the auto parts industry for over 7 years in various positions.
  • Retail Service Specialist October 2013- Current Previous location upon request
  • Handled bank deposits, store keys, and coded safe.
  • Supervised material flow, storage and preparation of products for specific hub routes according to pick tickets.
  • Look up and sell correct parts requested by retail customers or commercial customers.

Top Retail Service Specialist Employers

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