What Does A Sales Associate Do?

Sales associates work mostly in retail environments where their main task is in selling the goods and services of the store and assisting customers who are looking for particular products. The selling process is not simply handing an item to a customer who then pays for it at the cash register—although this does happen many times. In many cases, sales associates need to know the items they are selling like the palm of their hands because they often have to answer questions from their customers. This is especially true of expensive items like cars where customers will often have questions about its features and financing terms. The questions may not be as complicated for sales associates who sell clothes, shoes and furniture but they still need to know about the details that pertain to these items inasmuch as customers are sure to ask clarifications on certain things.

Closely related to the sales associate’s work of selling is providing exceptional customer service to their clients. They greet customers when they enter the store and guide them to the item they are looking for. If that particular item is out of stock or if the customer wants a cheaper alternative, they provide options. An important aspect of customer service is giving honest feedback to the customer about the product they intend to buy. When a consumer has decided to purchase a product, sales associates process the order by accepting the payment and issuing receipts. They also thank customers for dropping by their store whether they purchased anything or not.

When sales associates are not selling to customers, they also manage the store’s inventory. They may meet suppliers at the warehouse to unload stocks and organize these. They will also be tagging the items that will be displayed with prices, sizes, stock numbers and other information. They are also tasked with arranging the stocks on the shelves or racks and help designers in putting displays on the windows. If there are new notices about discounts and promos, sales associates will help in putting these in strategic places in the store as well.

Those who work in clothing shops must see to it that the clothes are folded neatly after customers check them out and try them on. In any retail setting, it’s always a good idea to keep the store neat, organized and appealing so that consumers will be enticed to enter the store. It also allows them to easily find the items that they are looking for.

Since sales associates are the ones who have direct contact with customers, they know what the latter wants. If customers have concerns regarding the service and other offers of the store, it is the responsibility of sales associates to bring the matter up to their manager during their meetings. Together with the rest of the members of the team, sales associates can then brainstorm and contribute potential solutions to address these issues. A career as a sales associate is highly-collaborative. As such, sales associates must work together with all members of the team to come up with ideas that will get more people to come into the store. Doing so will help the store—and if it a part of a bigger retail chain, the company—to grow and expand.

Career Spotlight: Sales Associate

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