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Career and Education Opportunities for Retail Salesmen in St. Louis, Missouri

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for retail salesmen in the St. Louis, Missouri area. There are currently 92,170 working retail salesmen in Missouri; this should grow by 8% to 99,810 working retail salesmen in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for retail salesmen, which sees this job pool growing by about 8.3% over the next eight years. In general, retail salesmen sell merchandise, such as furniture, motor vehicles, or apparel in a retail establishment.

Income for retail salesmen is about $9 hourly or $19,780 yearly on average in Missouri. Nationally, their income is about $9 per hour or $20,510 yearly. Incomes for retail salesmen are not quite as good as in the overall category of Sales and Clerical in Missouri, and not quite as good as the overall Sales and Clerical category nationally.

There are seventy-one schools of higher education in the St. Louis area, including seven within twenty-five miles of St. Louis where you can get a degree to start your career as a retail salesman. Given that the most common education level for retail salesmen is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time training to become a retail salesman if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Retail Salesman

Retail Salesman video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, retail salesmen sell merchandise, such as furniture, motor vehicles, or apparel in a retail establishment.

Retail salesmen greet clients and ascertain what each customer wants or needs. They also describe products and explain use, operation, and up keep of products to clients. Equally important, retail salesmen have to recommend and help locate or obtain products on the basis of customer needs and desires. They are often called upon to maintain knowledge of current sales and promotions, policies regarding payment and exchanges, and security practices. They are expected to answer questions regarding stores and their products. Finally, retail salesmen ticket, arrange and display products to advance sales.

Every day, retail salesmen are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they speak clearly.

It is important for retail salesmen to inventory stock and requisition new stock. They are often called upon to watch for and recognize security risks and thefts, and know how to inhibit or handle these situations. They also demonstrate use or operation of product. They are sometimes expected to make ready sales slips or sales contracts. Somewhat less frequently, retail salesmen are also expected to estimate cost of repair or modification of product.

and maintain records pertaining to sales. And finally, they sometimes have to describe products and explain use, operation, and up keep of products to clients.

Like many other jobs, retail salesmen must be reliable and believe in cooperation and coordination.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in St. Louis include:

  • Advertising Agent. Sell or solicit advertising, including graphic art, advertising space in publications, custom made signs, or TV and radio advertising time. May obtain leases for outdoor advertising sites or persuade retailer to use sales promotion display items.
  • Cage Cashier. Exchange coins and tokens for patrons' money. May issue payoffs and obtain customer's signature on receipt when winnings exceed the amount held in the slot machine. May operate a booth in the slot machine area and furnish change persons with money bank at the start of the shift, or count and audit money in drawers.
  • Cashier. Receive and disburse money in establishments other than financial institutions. Usually involves use of electronic scanners, cash registers, or related equipment. Often involved in processing credit or debit card transactions and validating checks.
  • Product Demonstrator. Demonstrate merchandise and answer questions for the purpose of creating public interest in buying the product. May sell demonstrated merchandise.
  • Rental Counter Clerk. Receive orders for repairs, rentals, and services. May describe available options, compute cost, and accept payment.
  • Retail Sales Manager. Directly supervise sales workers in a retail establishment or department. Duties may include management functions, such as purchasing, budgeting, and personnel work, in addition to supervisory duties.
  • Sales Team Manager. Directly supervise and coordinate activities of sales workers other than retail sales workers. May perform duties, such as budgeting, accounting, and personnel work, in addition to supervisory duties.
  • Technical Service Representative. Sell goods for wholesalers or manufacturers where technical or scientific knowledge is required in such areas as biology, engineering, and electronics, normally obtained from at least 2 years of post-secondary education.
  • Telemarketer. Solicit orders for goods or services over the telephone.
  • Wholesale and Manufacturing Sales Representative. Sell goods for wholesalers or manufacturers to businesses or groups of individuals. Work requires substantial knowledge of items sold.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Retail Salesman Training

Saint Louis Community College-Meramec - Kirkwood, MO

Saint Louis Community College-Meramec, 11333 Big Bend Blvd, Kirkwood, MO 63122. Saint Louis Community College-Meramec is a large college located in Kirkwood, Missouri. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,217 students. Saint Louis Community College-Meramec has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Selling Skills and Sales Operations which graduated one and three students respectively in 2008.

Fontbonne University - Saint Louis, MO

Fontbonne University, 6800 Wydown Blvd, Saint Louis, MO 63105-3098. Fontbonne University is a small university located in Saint Louis, Missouri. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,967 students and an admission rate of 82%. Fontbonne University has a less than one year program in Selling Skills and Sales Operations.

Lewis and Clark Community College - Godfrey, IL

Lewis and Clark Community College, 5800 Godfrey Rd, Godfrey, IL 62035. Lewis and Clark Community College is a medium sized college located in Godfrey, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 8,016 students. Lewis and Clark Community College has a less than one year program in Selling Skills and Sales Operations which graduated fifteen students in 2008.

Southwestern Illinois College - Belleville, IL

Southwestern Illinois College, 2500 Carlyle Ave, Belleville, IL 62221-5899. Southwestern Illinois College is a large college located in Belleville, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 14,308 students. Southwestern Illinois College has 3 areas of study related to Retail Salesman. They are:

  • Floriculture/Floristry Operations and Management, less than one year which graduated 1 student in 2008.
  • Sales, Distribution, and Marketing Operations, less than one year which graduated 8 students in 2008.
  • Selling Skills and Sales Operations, associate's degree which graduated 4 students in 2008.

Lindenwood University - Saint Charles, MO

Lindenwood University, 209 S Kingshighway, Saint Charles, MO 63301-1695. Lindenwood University is a large university located in Saint Charles, Missouri. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 10,253 students and an admission rate of 40%. Lindenwood University has 2 areas of study related to Retail Salesman. They are:

  • Sales, Distribution, and Marketing Operations, bachelor's degree.
  • Retailing and Retail Operations, bachelor's degree which graduated 2 students in 2008.

Patricia Stevens College - Saint Louis, MO

Patricia Stevens College, 330 North Fourth Street, Suite 306, Saint Louis, MO 63102-2008. Patricia Stevens College is a small college located in Saint Louis, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 182 students and an admission rate of 50%. Patricia Stevens College has an associate's degree and a bachelor's degree program in Retailing and Retail Operations which graduated nineteen and zero students respectively in 2008.

Saint Louis Community College-Florissant Valley - Saint Louis, MO

Saint Louis Community College-Florissant Valley, 3400 Pershall Rd, Saint Louis, MO 63135. Saint Louis Community College-Florissant Valley is a medium sized college located in Saint Louis, Missouri. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 6,515 students. Saint Louis Community College-Florissant Valley has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Selling Skills and Sales Operations which graduated zero and one students respectively in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Professional SalesPerson: Whether you're an experienced sales professional looking to take your career to the next level, or new to sales and looking to accelerate your learning curve and income, becoming a NASP Certified Professional SalesPerson (CPSP) will help you get there.

For more information, see the National Association of Sales Professionals website.

Automotive Sales Professional: This is a tremendous opportunity for everyone who has an interest in automotive sales to become a knowledgeable, ethical and customer-focused trained individual and enjoy great career success.

For more information, see the National Automobile Dealers Association website.

National Professional Certification in Sales: The Certification was designed to capture the core Sales duties for a broad range of entry-level through first-line supervisory positions across the sales and service industries.

For more information, see the National Retail Federation Foundation website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: St. Louis, Missouri

St. Louis, Missouri
St. Louis, Missouri photo by Dschwen

St. Louis is located in St. Louis City County, Missouri. It has a population of over 354,361, which has grown by 1.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in St. Louis, 83, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in St. Louis are priced at $111,600 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, one hundred fifty-seven new homes were built in St. Louis, down from two hundred sixty-one the previous year.

The top three industries for women in St. Louis are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is accommodation and food services, construction, and educational services. The average travel time to work is about 25 minutes. More than 19.1% of St. Louis residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.6%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in St. Louis is 10.9%, which is greater than Missouri's average of 8.9%.

Nativity of Our Lord Church, Church of the Good Shepard and Church of the Holy Communion are among the churches located in St. Louis.

St. Louis is home to the Terminal Railroad Association Building and the Memorial Home as well as Washington Park and Willmore Park. Shopping malls in the area include Hampton Village Shopping Center and Loughborough Shopping Center.