Retail sales advisors are usually found in stores although some of them, like those who sell cars or lumber yard materials can be found working outside.
Their job consists of assisting customers in their decision to purchase their product and facilitating transactions. They may also help in replenishing stocks. To meet customer needs, they may be required to work during evenings or even weekends.
Nature of Work
Retail Sales Advisors tasks include greeting customers within the store premises and making sure that all customers are attended to and their needs are met. They sell products and services, describe them to customers, explaining how to use or operate and take care of them. They offer general advice, technical assistance and guidance. They can also be required to promote products helping to arrange and display them in the store. Retail sales advisors may also have to do evaluations of their products or services, and make recommendations. Their job is to make sure that customers find what they are actually looking for and in doing so, they must describe the features and benefits of the product they are selling, set it up, configure and adjust accordingly, demonstrate how to use it for what purpose and generally promote its value to the customer. Besides selling products or services, retail sales advisors may also do financial transactions as part of their interactions with customers. They receive payments in different forms from customers, bag or package their purchases and even operate cash registers. They may also be required to count the money in the cash register, and make deposits to banks or a cash office. Some of them may need to help in stocking merchandise in racks or shelves, mark price tags, prepare displays, take stock inventory and arrange for the delivery of packages to the destination indicated by the customer.
Most companies usually do not require any formal education for their retail sales advisors although many do prefer candidates who have finished high school. Most employers have on-the-job training where they can learn about the product or service they will sell, techniques on selling and other related information. In larger stores where there are quite a number of sales advisors, on-the-job training can take from several days to a few months. Some small stores may require new sales advisors to be trained by another sales advisor who has more experience. They have to be neat in appearance, possessing strong interpersonal and communication skills. They are expected to be knowledgeable about the product or service they are offering. They should be patient and show empathy to customers in sensitive circumstances. They should be able to analyze the situation and understand technical information about what they are selling and relay it in full to others.