6 Skills You’ll Need To Be A Frontline Sales Assistant
If a workday spent talking to people, talking about something you like and styling merchandise sounds like a dream job then you might make a great frontline sales assistant.
We’ve all talked to and bought from frontline sales assistants. They help you find what you’re looking for and something that fits your budget. But do you know what a frontline sales assistant actually does? Where can they work? And what kind of skills they need?
Let’s take a look at six skills you’ll need to be a frontline sales assistant, but first let’s breakdown their role and find out what exactly they do.
What does a frontline sales assistant do?
Frontline sales assistant work in retail spaces advising customers on products, making sales and helping customers to solve issues they are having with the product. They can be put in charge of creating visual merchandising and setting up sales and promotions stands.
Frontline sales assistants work under a store manager who trains them on product knowledge, upcoming promotions, store targets and KPIs and delegates tasks. A frontline sales assistant often has a lot of autonomy in their role, sometimes opening or closing the store on their own, cashing out the till and completing the end of day sales reports.
Where do frontline sales assistants work?
Frontline sales assistants can work in all different kinds of industries. This role can be infinitely adaptable, letting you work directly with brands you’re passionate about. If you love surfing you can work for a surf brand selling boards and other surfing paraphilia. If you’re a keen camper you can work for a camping supplies store helping people find the right tent or camping stove for their next trip.
Because you can work in industries you’re passionate about, this job can be a perfect fit, letting you spend all day sharing your hobbies with others.
How much do frontline sales assistants make?
According to talent.com a frontline sales assistant can make anywhere from $50,550 to $75,000 per year with an average salary of $56,004. This is based on averages of the whole industry, but this role can have other perks such as a flexible schedule, letting you work casually on evening or weekends, providing a lot of freedom to pursue other passions and interests.
What kind of skills do you need?
Frontline sales assistants need a variety of skills to excel in this fast-paced industry. They need the gift of the gab, a passion for their company’s product and a cool head in stressful situations.
You’ll spend a lot of the day talking to people in this role. Everything from welcoming people into the store to advising them on products and fixing issues they’re having. You’ll also need to communicate with other stores, store managers, warehouses and other stakeholders over the phone, in-person and via email.
Having exceptional verbal and written communications skills will help you to excel in a role like this.
Problem solving skills
Working with people and the general public provides an unknown element. Even with all the product knowledge in the company and a full understanding of company policy and procedure there are still going to be days when a customer brings an issue to you that will take some creative problem solving.
Finding a way to help them and solve the issue within your company’s rules can be a challenge but as long as you leave them feeling satisfied with the result, it’s a win.
Being a people person
You need to like people and being around people to excel as a frontline sales assistant. This is not a role for someone who doesn’t like small talk or finds talking to people draining. You need to be able to relate to people, finding common ground quickly and building rapport and trust. This is necessary to be able to help them find the best possible product for their needs.
Selling to people isn’t always easy, and you can experience a lot of rejection and general rudeness from customers so a thick skin and a little confidence can go a long way. The great thing about being confident is that you can fake it until you make it. You don’t need to be innately confident you can just pretend to be confident, and it will flow from there.
Being a fast learner
A frontline sales assistant needs to be able think on their feet and pick up new information and training quickly. Each point of sales system can be a little different, each promotion or sale will have different rules and codes to enter, and each new product line needs to be memorised. There’s a lot of information for frontline sales assistants to keep in their heads, so being a fast learner can really help in this industry.
Expertise in their industry
One of the biggest things that a frontline sales assistant will need is expertise in their company’s industry and products. People come to specific brands because they are looking for the authority and expertise associated with the brand.
This is why it’s great to work for a company that specialises in something you’re interested in. Technology, sports, fashion or makeup, there are so many areas of special interest that you can get into in retail. Utilising your existing knowledge and keeping up to date on new industry trends will be essential to providing the level of expertise the customers are looking for.
How do you become a frontline sales assistant?
While formal qualifications are not always required to work in retail, they can certainly increase your chances of being selected for the role you want. The best course to look at doing if you’re interested in moving into this industry would be the Certificate III in Retail. This course can be completed entirely online through self-paced, trainer-supported study and it can take anywhere from six months to twelve months to complete depending on the delivery option you choose.
In this course you’ll learn how to:
- Engage the customer
- Assist with customer difficulties
- Build customer relationships and loyalty
- Work effectively in a team
- Work effectively in a service environment
- Identify and respond to security risks
- Sell to the retail customer
- Contribute to workplace health and safety
- Work with diverse people
- Receive and handle retail stock
- Maintain personal health and wellbeing
- Organise and maintain the store environment
- Organise personal work requirements
You can learn more about the course here.
Working as a frontlines sales assistant is a demanding, fast-paced and rewarding role. You can spend all day working with something you love and showing other people how to get the most out of it as well.
If you’re interested in knowing more about this exciting industry you can check out the course here, or organise to have a chat with one of our friendly course advisors. They’d be happy to help you find the best course for you.