Retail Sales Associate Salary

Median pay for Retail Sales Associates in the United States lies in the neighborhood of $10.16 per hour. In the world of Retail Sales Associates, overall cash allowance can occasionally include more than $6K from bonuses and, in some exceptional cases, $3K from profit sharing, causing incomes to vary widely between $17K and $37K. The most important factor affecting compensation for this group is the company, followed by geography and experience level. Women Retail Sales Associates who took the survey just slightly outnumber men. Job satisfaction for Retail Sales Associates is high. More than half of professionals in this line of work do not receive benefits; however, over a third report medical coverage and just under one in three claim dental coverage as well. The data for this synopsis comes from respondents who took the PayScale salary survey.

$16,399 - $61,507
$16K
$34K
$62K
MEDIAN: $33,837
10%
50%
90%

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$8.22 - $14.72
$8
$10
$15
MEDIAN: $10.22
10%
50%
90%

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$0$61K
Salary $16,399 - $61,507
Bonus $97.39 - $5,954
Profit Sharing $66.98 - $3,372
Commission $0.00 - $24,303
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).
)
$17,156 - $36,988
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 20 Sep 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 431
Hourly Data $0$24
Hourly Rate $8.22 - $14.72
Hourly Tips $0.14 - $3.38
Overtime $8.22 - $24.98
Annual Data $0$36K
Bonus $97.39 - $5,954
Commission $0.00 - $24,303
Profit Sharing $66.98 - $3,372
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).
)
$17,156 - $36,988
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 20 Sep 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 4,584

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

Job Description for Retail Sales Associate

A retail sales associate works in the customer areas of a retail store. The store uses these workers to help maintain the location's orderliness and appearance, as well as assist shoppers in locating specific merchandise and with questions about sales or special discounts. Additionally, many stores ask their retail associates to perform duties such as restocking inventory throughout a shift. In some stores, associates are cross-trained as cashiers and may be called upon to either run a register at the front of the store or at a remote department location during busy hours. Typically, associates help with store-wide sales campaigns and special promotions; they must be knowledgeable about these campaigns and provide customers with assistance regarding sale items, discounts and customer rewards programs.

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Retail Sales Associate Tasks

  • Process payment for products or service, may maintain customer preference records.
  • Assist the customer in selecting products/services, answer questions and check for stock and availability.
  • Attend special training of products/services to understand the product features, trends or styles of the products/services.
  • Sell the organization's products/services to new or established customers typically via walk-in business.

Common Career Paths for Retail Sales Associate


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While not commonly seen, Retail Sales Associates who transition into a Registered Nurse position may see a rise in pay. The median salary for Registered Nurses is $56K per year. Retail Sales Associates moving up in their careers tend to step into positions as Retail Store Assistant Managers or Retail Store Managers. The median paychecks in those roles are $10K higher and $19K higher, respectively.

Retail Sales Associate Job Listings

Popular Employer Salaries for Retail Sales Associate


Retail Sales Associates fill the offices of leading firms Wal-Mart Stores, Inc, Macy's, Inc., The Home Depot Inc., Target Corporation, and T-Mobile, Inc. The biggest paychecks can be found at Verizon Wireless — the median salary there is $43K; however, employees are subject to a wide range in pay, with the lowest salaries sitting near $20K and highest ones in the neighborhood of $64K. Those in search of high salaries should also consider T-Mobile, Inc., Nordstrom, Inc., and Lowe's Home Improvement Inc., top-paying firms where Retail Sales Associates rake in a solid $33K, $26K, or $26K, respectively.

The lowest salaries can be found at JCPenney — median pay is $19K — and there is little variation in compensation, with paychecks starting at $17K and only reaching $25K. Workers also receive paychecks lighter than average at Walmart.com ($19K), Kohl's Department Stores Inc ($19K), and Macy's, Inc. ($20K).

Popular Skills for Retail Sales Associate


Retail Sales Associates report using a large range of skills on the job. Most notably, skills in Sales Management, Customer Relationship Management, Account Sales, and Inside Sales are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts of 16 percent, 15 percent, 14 percent, and 14 percent, respectively. Most people familiar with Customer Service also know Cash Handling and Customer Relations.

Pay by Experience Level for Retail Sales Associate

Pay by Experience for a Retail Sales Associate has a positive trend. An entry-level Retail Sales Associate with less than 5 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $21,000 based on 3,331 salaries provided by anonymous users. Average total compensation includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay. A Retail Sales Associate with mid-career experience which includes employees with 5 to 10 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $24,000 based on 1,128 salaries. An experienced Retail Sales Associate which includes employees with 10 to 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $26,000 based on 796 salaries. A Retail Sales Associate with late-career experience which includes employees with greater than 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $29,000 based on 316 salaries.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $21,826

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

San Francisco offers some of the highest pay in the country for Retail Sales Associates, 46 percent above the national average. Retail Sales Associates can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Seattle (+27 percent), New York (+17 percent), Atlanta (+14 percent), and San Diego (+11 percent). Orlando ranks last in the field for pay, reporting salaries 4 percent below the national average. Employers in Charlotte and Miami also lean toward paying below-median salaries (2 percent lower and 1 percent lower, respectively).

Retail Sales Associate Reviews

Q: What is it like working as a Retail Sales Associate?

Retail Sales Associate in St. Louis Park:
"Micro Center: The Retail Store that can't do Retail."
Pros: Selling expensive items to customers who are engaged, interested, and excited about the product.
Cons: Dealing with some of the worst people imaginable -- homeless, non-English speakers, smelly people, and most commonly, unapologetically ignorant people.

Retail Sales Associate in Portland:
"Frustrating at best..."
Pros: Seeing my regular customers is always nice. I have grown to love my coworkers as well. Working with the general public also helps develop people skills.
Cons: Horrible hours. Sometimes, I get 20 hours a week and then I will get 30 hours another week. It's very random. The management team could use a lot of work. It feels as if they hire anybody to be a manager. You often get an unhealthy mix of them and you're forced to adapt to their rules, even if the way you're doing things is right. Customers are a huge flaw in this industry, obviously. Very rude, at times. You have to either have very thick skin or you become a robot and shut off all emotion to deal with the rude ones. It's a very exhausting job.

Retail Sales Associate in Ramsey:
"Its a job."
Pros: It is something you do when expectations are low and life is dull.
Cons: You have no job description, you can be given any responsibility at any time.

Retail Sales Associate in Bossier City:
"Flexibility in my work schedule."
Pros: The other employees are pleasant to work with.
Cons: It can get boring.

Retail Sales Associate in Bossier City:
"Flexibility in my work schedule."
Pros: The other employees are pleasant to work with.
Cons: It can get boring.

Retail Sales Associate in Greensboro:
"Cashier/bagger at grocery store."
Pros: Meeting new people and helping people.
Cons: I am not happy in the grocery store environment.

Retail Sales Associate in Lancaster:
Pros: Everything. Cash register. Customer service.
Cons: The pay. Very physical Job. No benefits.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Retail Sales Associate

Gender

Female
57 %
Male
43 %

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 878 votes.
Less than 1 year
9%
1-4 years
52%
5-9 years
18%
10-19 years
14%
20 years or more
7%
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Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Retail Sales Associate Salaries

▲35%

▲20%

▲10%

National Average
$22,000

▼5%

Skills That Affect Retail Sales Associate Salaries



▲13%

▲11%

▲4%





National Average
$22,000

Customer Service
▼2%

▼2%

Oral / Verbal Communication
▼2%

Spanish Language
▼2%


▼4%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 878 votes.

Gender

Female
57 %
Male
43 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
9%
1-4 years
52%
5-9 years
18%
10-19 years
14%
20 years or more
7%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 37%
dental benefits
Dental: 30%
vision benefits
Vision: 26%
no benefits
None: 60%
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