Sales Clerk Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

Last updated: August 22, 2022

A Sales Clerk, or Sales Associate, is responsible for supporting the daily operations of a retail store by maintaining positive relationships with customers and organizing display shelves. Their duties include greeting customers and helping them find specific products within the store, taking inventory of products and restocking shelves as needed and managing the POS system to administer refunds or process payments for customers.

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Sales Clerk Duties and Responsibilities

A Sales Clerk has many responsibilities that center on increasing and maintaining the overall sales at their store. Some of these responsibilities include the following:

  • Greeting customers as they enter the store 
  • Working at the point-of-sale counter to process transactions
  • Assisting customers in locating products by going through the inventory
  • Calling other store locations to find items that are not available in the store based on customer requests
  • Suggesting new items to customers based on their selections
  • Entering sales data and customer data into the company database 
  • Keeping records of special orders
  • Monitoring the merchandise and notifying a superior when items need to be restocked
  • Arranging items such as special sale items to engage customers
  • Building customer relationships
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What does a Sales Clerk do?

Sales Clerks can work for various retail stores, including large department stores, shopping malls, locally-owned shops or boutiques. They work closely with other Sales Clerks to help customers learn more about products and how they can use them in their daily lives. Their job is to check the storeroom for customers to see if they still have remaining inventory of a particular product and notify customers of incoming shipments. They may also be responsible for cleaning surfaces before, during and after business hours, including mopping floors, dusting shelves and vacuuming entry mats.

Sales Clerk skills and qualifications

Several skills are necessary to meet the demands of this position, such as: 

  • Customer service: This skill involves interacting with customers and assisting them in their purchasing process. A Sales Clerk creates a welcoming atmosphere in a store, proactively helps customers to find what they are looking for and makes an effort to improve customer relationships. 
  • Computer skills: These skills involve using computer technologies for keeping records, checking inventory and processing financial transactions. A Sales Clerk uses digital technologies and computer programs to provide customer service and process sales. 
  • Time management: This skill involves managing several job duties while providing timely service to customers. A Sales Clerk may need to handle multiple customers during periods with a high level of in-store traffic. 
  • Communication skills: Good verbal communication skills are essential for this job. A Sales Clerk uses verbal communication to assist customers and build friendly relationships. 
  • Accounting skills: These skills involve performing basic accounting functions and using accounting software. A Sales Clerk uses a cash register, works as a cashier and processes sales. 
  • Marketing skills: Marketing skills involve improving sales via customer interactions. A Sales Clerk suggests new products to customers that are based on their preferences, arranges clearance items to appeal to customers and builds customer loyalty by proactively assisting customers. 
  • Data entry: This skill involves entering sales and customer data into the company database. A Sales Clerk types quickly, enters accurate information into computers, verifies sales data and edits data inputs so the company can keep track of sales and customer data. 

Sales Clerk Salary Expectations

A Sales Clerk makes an average of $11.31 per hour.  Pay rate may depend on level of experience, education and the geographical location. 

Sales Clerk education and training requirements

A high school diploma is usually required for this entry-level position, but you may opt for requiring an equivalent qualification or work experience. Training on the methods and policies of the company is provided on the job and is usually a part of a new employee’s onboarding. Professionals are trained for this position by working with a supervisor until they can perform all their job duties satisfactorily. At the end of this training period, employees can contact a supervisor with their questions. 

Sales Clerk experience requirements

As Sales Clerks usually receive on-the-job training, work experience is not usually a prerequisite for recruitment. Candidates with previous experience in working as a cashier or a Sales Clerk will require less training and are more likely to meet job demands quickly. 

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Frequently asked questions about Sales Clerks


What is the difference between a Sales Clerk and a Sales Representative?

Both Sales Clerks and Sales Representatives work to promote the sale of products or services to consumers. However, they differ in their work environments and subsequent job responsibilities. For example, Sales Clerks work in a retail store. They greet customers, manage transactions, restock shelves, receive order shipments and maintain the store’s cleanliness by completing various chores. 

In contrast, Sales Representatives usually work in an office setting as a member of a corporation’s sales department. Instead of interacting face-to-face with consumers, Sales Representatives typically make and receive calls from prospective or current customers. They tell customers about products or services over the phone and help them decide which product best suits their needs. They may also be responsible for processing payments or issuing refunds over the phone as well.


What are the daily duties of a Sales Clerk?

On a typical day, a Sales Clerk arrives at their workplace prior to the start of their shift. They speak with their Manager to determine which products to push during sales pitches and what tasks they need to accomplish. Throughout their shift, they receive order shipments, restock product inventory and assist customers in finding the right product based on their needs. After business hours, Sales Clerks count the drawer, restock shelves and clean store surfaces.


What qualities make a good Sales Clerk?

A good Sales Clerk is someone with a team-oriented attitude. This quality motivates them to work well with other Sales Clerks and fill in for Sales Clerks who have emergencies or schedule conflicts. They have excellent customer service capabilities that allow them to engage in positive interactions with customers and promote a loyal customer base. Sales Clerks also have flexible schedules that allow them to work nights, weekends or certain holidays. 

Further, a good Sales Clerk has the ability to perform their job duties, even in high-stress situations during peak business hours. A good Sales Clerk also has a creative mindset that enables them to come up with fun and attract product displays that generate interest from customers.


Who does a Sales Clerk report to?

A Sales Clerk typically reports to the Store Manager or Retail Store Manager. The Store Manager acts as a point of communication for Sales Clerks when they need help with handling complex customer situations or have questions about inventory shipments. In the absence of Store Managers, Sales Clerks report to the Assistant Store Manager. If a Sales Clerk works for a small store or locally-owned business, they may report directly to the Store Owner to receive daily tasks.

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