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Retail Buyer Salary

Pay for Retail Buyers in the United States sits in the ballpark of $55K annually. Geography is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by experience level. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. Female Retail Buyers make up most of the survey respondents at 72 percent. Health benefits are not enjoyed by everyone in this line of work, and approximately one in five lack any coverage at all. Medical benefits are reported by a strong majority and dental coverage is claimed by more than half. This report is based on responses to the PayScale salary survey.
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$31,235 - $91,998
(Median)
$31K
$55K
$92K
MEDIAN: $54,799
10%
50%
90%

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$9.89 - $21.32
(Median)
$9
$15
$21
MEDIAN: $14.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$32K$64K$96K
Salary
$31,235 - $91,998  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $19,489  
Profit Sharing
$1,300 - $3,500  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$26,450 - $95,685  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 31 Mar 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 131
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$16$32$48
Hourly Rate
$9.89 - $21.32  
   
Overtime
$0.30 - $32.61  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$32K$64K$96K
Bonus
$0.00 - $19,489  
   
Profit Sharing
$1,300 - $3,500  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$26,450 - $95,685  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 31 Mar 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 44

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Job Description for Retail Buyer

Retail buyers are responsible for developing and buying merchandise for their store or department. The buyer analyzes data to predict what will be popular with shoppers to ensure those items are sufficiently stocked. For clothing and fashion, retail buyers often work closely with fashion designers to stay ahead of what is (and will be) popular in the fashion industry. Retail buyers may be required to travel to attend events such as fashion shows, trade shows, and fairs. They work with other teams in the organization to meet company quotas, sales volume, and margins. Retail buyers may also supervise an assistant buyer or buyers, who help with the ordering process and responding to vendor questions, among other tasks.

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Retail Buyer Tasks

  • Ensure that orders are delivered on time and at cost.
  • Resolve billing and shipping problems and provide information to suppliers.
  • Identify suppliers, select merchandise and negotiate bills of sale for a business.
  • Inspect deliveries for shipping errors, improper handling, or quality issues.

Common Career Paths for Retail Buyer


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Retail Buyers who go on to become Buyers may see somewhat stagnant compensation. On average, a Buyer, an upper-level role, pays $46K.

Buyer Job Listings

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Retail Buyers usually report a few specific skills. Most notably, skills in Data Analysis, Merchandising, Inventory Management, and Strategic Planning are correlated to pay that is above average. Those listing Strategic Planning as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. Inventory Management and Merchandising also typically command lower compensation.

Pay by Experience Level for Retail Buyer

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


For many Retail Buyers, experience and pay levels seem to be correlated; more years in the business generally lead to more money. Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $41K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $50K on average — a distinctly larger sum. Retail Buyers see a median salary of $52K after reaching one to two decades on the job. Seasoned workers who boast more than two decades of relevant experience enjoy a median salary of $62K, which is substantially larger than the medians reported by folks with fewer years on their resumes.

Related Job Salaries

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Experience Affects Retail Buyer Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 29%

Experienced
up arrow 7%

Mid-Career
up arrow 4%

National Average
$48,000

Entry-Level
up arrow 15%

Skills That Affect Retail Buyer Salaries

National Average
$48,000

Data Analysis
up arrow 18%


Strategic Planning
up arrow 23%

Inventory Management
up arrow 23%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 26 votes.

Gender

Female
72 %
Male
28 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
27%
5-9 years
33%
10-19 years
20%
20 years or more
18%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 77% dental benefits Dental: 56%
vision benefits Vision: 36% employee benefits None: 21%