A retail specialist is also known as a retail salesperson or sales associate. Regardless of what name they are called, they help customers find services and products they want to buy. To do this, they explain the essential features of an offering and often demonstrate its uses to potential buyers.

Besides telling customers about products and services, they may also process orders, wrap purchases, collect customer data, or handle coupons. However, this job description varies from one retail store to another.

Since a retail specialist's job is flexible and entails a more hands-on approach, potential candidates may not need an educational background to qualify as a retail specialist. However, most stores restrict qualification to those with high-school diplomas to ensure the availability of basic skill sets. Retail specialists are front line workers and often collaborate with customer service to ensure a positive shopping experience for all customers.

What Does a Retail Specialist Do

There are certain skills that many retail specialists have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed interpersonal skills, math skills and persistence.

Learn more about what a Retail Specialist does

How To Become a Retail Specialist

If you're interested in becoming a retail specialist, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 49.8% of retail specialists have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 3.2% of retail specialists have master's degrees. Even though most retail specialists have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Learn More About How To Become a Retail Specialist

Retail Specialist Career Paths

Average Salary for a Retail Specialist

Retail Specialists in America make an average salary of $31,114 per year or $15 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $43,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $22,000 per year.
Average Retail Specialist Salary
$31,114 Yearly
$14.96 hourly

What Am I Worth?


Roles and Types of Retail Specialist

The role of a retail specialist includes a wide range of responsibilities. These responsibilities can vary based on an individual's specific job, company, or industry.Here are some general retail specialist responsibilities:

  • Manage and service accounts in an assigned zone. Establish
  • Determines customers needs and assist them with retail merchandise. Knowledge of retail merchandise back stock
  • As the microsoft windows store specialist, you will wear many hats

There are several types of retail specialist, including:

Retail Clerk


A retail clerk is a sales professional whose job is to help customers with their shopping by directing and serving them, stocking shelves, manning the register, packing and bagging produce, and acting as a teller or cashier when necessary. Their additional responsibilities include serving shoppers by politely helping them find what they are looking for, completing purchases, taking care of facility maintenance and appearance, gathering carts, keeping aisles in order, and setting up displays that highlight certain products.

They are required to follow directions, to get along with their teammates, to dress according to company policy, to look and act like a professional at all times, and to perceive what needs to be done and do it, whether that's requesting stock for an empty shelf or opening a new checkout line during the evening rush. They also need to learn about new items and procedures willingly and quickly.

This position does not require a college education: A high school diploma or GED is sufficient. Retail clerks earn an average salary of $23,367 annually which translates to $11.23 per hour. They are generally paid per hour, work in shifts, and might work more hours and longer shifts during the holiday season.

  • Average Salary: $30,046
  • Degree: Bachelor's Degree

Retail Merchandiser


You may also know retail merchandisers as stockers. But nonetheless, they're essential to your shopping experience. Because if they don't put it out on the shelves, then chances are you're probably not going home with it.

Retail merchandisers receive a lot of their training on-the-job, which is why there aren't any formal education requirements for the job. The day-to-day doesn't just include stocking shelves. In fact, as a retail merchandiser, you're in charge of making sure the product that your organization is selling is easy to find and placed in a way that's desirable to the consumer. In a way, you're like the marketer for the products you're selling. But instead of SEO keywords, you're marketing tangible products.

  • Average Salary: $28,678
  • Degree: Bachelor's Degree

Retail Cashier


Retail cashiers perform duties like welcoming customers, answering phones, and directing customer inquiries to appropriate parties. They handle cash transactions between customers and retail stores. This involves receiving and processing all payments according to standard procedures. Also, they scan products, maintain scanning equipment, and fix scanning issues. Asides from that, they help with maintaining storefront and retail displays. Furthermore, they complete, process, and maintain applicable paperwork and records. Additionally, they perform periodic audits of cash intake or cash drawers and process receipts and in-store coupons for customers.

To become a retail cashier, you must have at least a high school diploma or its equivalent. You must possess communication, attention to detail, observation, maths, multitasking, and customer service skills. You must have a minimum of six months of experience in a related role. Retail cashiers make an average income of $23,892 per annum. It varies between $19,000 and $31,000.

  • Average Salary: $29,009
  • Degree: High School Diploma

States With The Most Retail Specialist Jobs

Mouse over a state to see the number of active retail specialist jobs in each state. The darker areas on the map show where retail specialists earn the highest salaries across all 50 states.

Average Salary: Job Openings:

Number Of Retail Specialist Jobs By State

RankStateNumber of JobsAverage Salary
5New York4,636$35,699
6North Carolina4,341$27,945
13New Jersey2,921$32,647
23South Carolina1,991$27,325
33New Hampshire974$38,589
39New Mexico635$29,671
40West Virginia560$28,517
43Rhode Island386$35,393
45North Dakota314$30,382
47South Dakota292$31,500

Retail Specialist Education

Retail Specialist Majors

29.0 %

Retail Specialist Degrees


49.8 %

High School Diploma

19.8 %


19.1 %

Top Skills For a Retail Specialist

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 60.0% of retail specialists listed store management on their resume, but soft skills such as interpersonal skills and math skills are important as well.

  • Store Management, 60.0%
  • Retail Environment, 12.3%
  • Store Associates, 3.9%
  • Customer Service, 3.8%
  • Product Knowledge, 3.6%
  • Other Skills, 16.4%

Choose From 10+ Customizable Retail Specialist Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Retail Specialist templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Retail Specialist resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Retail Specialist diversity

Retail Specialist Gender Distribution


After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among retail specialists, 57.2% of them are women, while 42.8% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among retail specialists is White, which makes up 57.7% of all retail specialists.

  • The most common foreign language among retail specialists is Spanish at 57.0%.

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Best States For a Retail Specialist

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a retail specialist. The best states for people in this position are New Hampshire, Hawaii, Vermont, and Washington. Retail specialists make the most in New Hampshire with an average salary of $38,589. Whereas in Hawaii and Vermont, they would average $37,623 and $36,284, respectively. While retail specialists would only make an average of $35,810 in Washington, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. New Hampshire

Total Retail Specialist Jobs: 974
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:

2. Vermont

Total Retail Specialist Jobs: 304
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:

3. Pennsylvania

Total Retail Specialist Jobs: 4,892
Highest 10% Earn:
Location Quotient:
Full List Of Best States For Retail Specialists

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Top Retail Specialist Employers

Most Common Employers For Retail Specialist

RankCompanyAverage SalaryHourly RateJob Openings
2Credit Union 1$37,164$17.8720
3Sony Electronics$34,358$16.5222
4Stanley Black & Decker$34,099$16.3930
6UMB Bank$33,269$15.9954
7Hudson Group$32,857$15.80119
8Andrews Distributing$31,417$15.1027

Retail Specialist Videos