Retail Buyer Salary

Median pay for Retail Buyers in the United States is around $51K annually. Final cash compensation to Retail Buyers varies from around $27K to approximately $91K; choice pay grades include potential for bonuses and profit sharing as high as $19K and $9K, respectively. Location is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by tenure. While some workers in this profession — approximately one-fourth — do not have any health coverage, a strong majority do receive medical benefits and slightly more than half have dental insurance. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. Women account for the majority of Retail Buyers who responded to the questionnaire — 69 percent to be exact. The information for this snapshot was generated by responses to the PayScale salary survey.
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$32,020 - $89,447
(Median)
$32K
$51K
$89K
MEDIAN: $51,140
10%
50%
90%

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$10.15 - $20.49
(Median)
$10
$15
$20
MEDIAN: $14.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$31K$62K$93K
Salary
$32,020 - $89,447  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $18,864  
Profit Sharing
$251.68 - $8,940  
Commission
$3,000  
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).
)
$27,116 - $91,396  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 204
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$16$32$48
Hourly Rate
$10.15 - $20.49  
   
Overtime
$5.43 - $32.00  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$32K$64K$96K
Bonus
$0.00 - $18,864  
   
Commission
$3,000  
Profit Sharing
$251.68 - $8,940  
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).
)
$27,116 - $91,396  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 66
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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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Many Retail Buyers move into a Buyer role, which does not lead to a big boost in pay. Buyers on average bring in a similar salary to Retail Buyers.

Buyer Job Listings

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Survey results suggest that Retail Buyers use a fairly large toolkit of professional skills. Most notably, skills in Retail, Negotiation, Merchandising, and Inventory Management are correlated to pay that is above average. Those listing Customer Service as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. Data Analysis and Strategic Planning also typically command lower compensation. Merchandising is a skill commonly found among those who know Inventory Management.

Pay by Experience Level for Retail Buyer

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


For Retail Buyers, more experience in the field does not usually mean bigger paychecks. Relatively untried employees who have fewer than five years of experience earn around $42K on average. People who have worked for five to 10 years can expect a higher median salary of $49K. The average pay reported by folks with 10 to 20 years of experience is around $50K. Veterans who have worked for more than two decades do tend to make the most in the end; the median pay for this group is $62K.

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Experience Affects Retail Buyer Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 30%

Experienced
up arrow 5%


National Average
$48,000

Entry-Level
up arrow 12%

Skills That Affect Retail Buyer Salaries

Retail
up arrow 11%

Negotiation
up arrow 6%

National Average
$48,000


Inventory Management
up arrow 22%

Data Analysis
up arrow 23%

Strategic Planning
up arrow 23%

Customer Service
up arrow 31%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 40 votes.

Gender

Female
69 %
Male
31 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
27%
5-9 years
31%
10-19 years
23%
20 years or more
16%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 75%
dental benefits
Dental: 53%
medical benefits
Vision: 37%
dental benefits
None: 24%
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