How to Become a Retail Merchandiser

A retail merchandising service is a great way to create a successful home based business. It is a business where you can create your own schedule, and manage from your home.Start a retail merchandising business

Retail Merchandiser Description

Retail merchandising companies provide services where they represent a product or company and ensure that the goods are shown appropriately in a store or online. You ensure that the businesses that you represent have their goods displayed in the right store, the right place, the right price at the right time.

Yes, I know, that is a lot of “rights” in that phrase, but hey, it really is what it is.

My wife and I provided this type of service for a drywall company for 7 years on a part-time basis. We were able to supplement our income while my wife and I were able to be at home to raise our young children.

I had a full-time job at the time but had a variable schedule, so the day I was off during the week, my wife would go out to do the merchandising. When she was pregnant with our second child, I would do the merchandising while she stayed home with the kids. It really worked out well for us at the time.

What We Did As Merchandisers

Brenda and I had a contract with a drywall company that supplied drywall, mud, and related supplies.

We would go around to the big box stores to ensure that their products were properly displayed. Making sure that all the signs were still in the proper place showing the latest advertised prices and specials.

The stock would be checked, and recommendations for re-orders were provided to the store managers.

This type of service ensures the company’s products have the best competitive edge over the other products in the store. In most cases, the companies add this service cost into the wholesale price of the product, in exchange, the stores do not need to hire staff to maintain the products in the store.

 Click Here To Learn About What We Are Doing Now!

 

How To Get Startedtart a retail merchandising business

Most larger companies like the one we provided merchandising services usually contract out to well established merchandising agencies.

We were able to get the contract with the drywall company by negotiating with a regional representative. He signed us up on a trial basis, once he knew we provided great service with a local and personal touch, we were set for the long run.

To me, this is the best way to secure leads to getting a contract with large suppliers.

It would be difficult to approach a company the same way as the big boys like Spar Group or Mosaic. They have years of experience and a bankroll to back them up. Trying to compete with these types of companies head to head will leave you squashed like a chipmunk trying to stop an transport truck on the highway.

Using the same chipmunk analogy, instead of coming head to head with a company on the highway, wait until they are parked and stroll up to the driver while he/she is eating their lunch in the truck.

The fact that you are approaching them this way will likely be intriguing to them and they might just leave you something to nibble on.

In other words, you can go to big box stores on the weekends, when regional representatives are providing workshops or special incentive demonstrations in the store and conjure up a conversation with that representative.

You will need to show interest and knowledge in their product, so do your homework prior to approaching them. You’ll likely only have 1-2 minutes to make your sales pitch because they are there to make sales too.

Show that you know your stuff, explain quickly how you can offer them a service that the big companies are not able, have a business card or pamphlet ready to give them.

Close the deal in ensuring you have their email or phone number and that you will contact them on the next business day to discuss with further details, this way you are in control of the next step.

You are catching them at the first level of the buying stage, so when you contact them on the next working day, you will rapidly know if they have an interest or even have any say in the process of having a local merchandiser.

One aspect you can spin is the idea that they will no longer need to do those demo days on the weekend, that could be the clincher to selling your service right there.

merchandising service deal

You may be asking, “What can I do if I can’t find regional reps in stores in my area?”

Then I say, don’t give up! Start by visiting stores and walk through the isles.

Look at how different products are presented on the shelves.

Are there some products not being represented as well as other companies for the same product line?

Write down the names of the products that look lost on the shelves, not well organized, low stock, not properly or well labeled.

Then ask the stock personnel on the floor if it is themselves that fill the shelves with that product or the company for that product who manage the display, find out if by chance they know the representative.

I think you get the idea here, you see a brand that is not well represented, find out by questioning the staff in the store to find out who you need to contact to offer your services.

If possible, take pictures of what you saw in the store, then clean it up and take an after picture. Show them proof and advantages other companies can’t offer. Be original, show initiative, show that you will take charge of a situation and know how to fix anything.

Show the representatives proof and advantages that other companies can’t offer.

The other part that will sell the idea to go with you will be the price. You having much less overhead you will be able to provide a price that will sure to beat out the big boy competition.

Tips to Consider Before Starting

Understand Marketing – this tip will make or break you!

To go in saying you can do better when you have little to no marketing experience will certainly leave you in the company rep’s dust.

If you are not able to speak the lingo and understand the far-reaching intricacies within marketing, then get that training or experience first before embarking on the development of your own merchandising business.

As I mentioned in other blogs, there are a couple of ways you can gain the knowledge required to start your own business without going to business school.

**Remember some of the most successful business men or women never had any business schooling.

The first way of learning while earning (I’m not a fan of learning while paying) is by working for a company like Spar or Mosaic, and get the experience that way (a similar method shown in “How To Start House A Cleaning Business“).

The second option, my preferred option is to sign up for my #1 recommended online university.

I will provide more detail on this option lower down, but not only will it provide you with a limitless wealth of marketing information, it provides you with the opportunity to start your online business with unmatched support from thousands of people already working in the online marketing business.

Business Plan 

If you read any of my other blogs about starting a work from home business you will notice my constant reminder to create a business plan.

Hold it…no need to run. It’s not all that difficult.

All you need to do is list all the things you know and want to do and put it down on paper. Here is a sample template for your convenience provided by BDC-Business Plan

Tools – depending on the type of merchandise you will be representing, you will need to have the appropriate tools.

We worked for a drywall company, so we were not expected to bring a truckload of the merchandise to the stores daily, that of course was all managed directly by the company.

We were expected to ensure that the products were clean, had proper signage and pamphlets available for the customers.

So we did have a van for all the boxes with signs, pamphlets, the point of sale display holders, cleaning tools, you name it, we had it all in that van.

Some companies may want you to bring the merchandise to the store yourself, so you will need to adapt accordingly.

Click here for our list of recommended tools

Communication – one key factor that pleased the company we represented was our commitment to clear and timeless communication.

We agreed on weekly reports to be sent to the representative with the information they felt was invaluable and not provided by other merchandising companies.

Any concerns, complaints or compliments the store staff provided would be communicated back to the representative for his follow up. This was invaluable to the representative to respond in a timely manner with his customers, boosting his accountability with them and consequently boosted our value with the representative and stores.

We provided that old small town personal touch!

 

Market your Service – Most Important Step to be Successful!

This should be a given, but if you are not able to provide a good impression of your business, how do you expect to sell it to companies that you are trying to represent. Having cards, pamphlets, and a website is good, but if they don’t stand out from the crowd or look just plain dated and ugly, then it will be a hard sell no matter how you spin it.

I mentioned earlier that I would explain My #1 Recommended, it is called Wealthy Affiliate! This site will not only teach and support you during your marketing education but it provides you with everything that is required to start your online representation online. You will be able to create your own websites perfectly catered to your audience.

You can read my review all about their services here ==> Wealthy Affiliate Review.

I hope all this information helps you to get one step closer at starting your own business. It is not impossible, only you can make a change in your destiny today.

The business motto I go by:
“You don’t have to be great to start a business, but you have to start to create great business!”

Sign up TodayClick Here To Start Today

If you have any questions or comments you would like to share please drop a note below!

Check out what other people have to say about this blog below!

Cheers

Paul

pbworkfromhome author alternate



53 comments on “How to Become a Retail Merchandiser
  1. jCamden says:

    I’ve always associated Wealthy Affiliate with affiliate marketing and thought of the training as only something an affiliate marketer would use but in reading your article I can see that it really is something that anyone with an online business can use! If someone has their own products that they make and sell they’ll benefit enormously from learning how to write good quality content and generating real traffic for their website!

    • Paul says:

      Absolutely! That is why they associate their name with the term University. It truly is a training that provides you opportunities with universal proportions. True, the training starts you with the basics of setting up an affiliate marketing website, (BTW you can set up 2 free sites, with their free membership) but that training will allow you to market anything you would like from something you make, write, create to organizing events or setting up a new community movement, you name the possibilities are only limited by your imagination. Besides this site, I too have other sites. One provides resources to find specific services and another that is something else I love –Peanut Butter that has options to purchase items I talk about from sites such as Amazon.

  2. Maria says:

    Hi Paul,

    I didn’t even know there was such a business you could drum up from home. These are really good pointers on how to approach the representatives in the region and capture their interest.

    This also appears to be a viable option for people if they get laid off or end up needing extra income. It’s great that you explained how to not get squashed like a chipmunk trying to stop a truck – definitely an important visual to understand! Poor chipmunk.

    It’s nice to know there ARE options like this. Thank you for bringing it to light and explaining how to get into it so well.

    Best-
    Maria

    • Paul says:

      Hello Maria

      Hahaha…I hope my blog can help save some chipmunks 😉

      It is interesting to see how many options for home-based businesses are out there. I am fortunate to be a member of Wealthy Affiliate (WA) where there are thousands of people working or building their home based business from the courses and support provided by WA. If you are interested in learning more about Wealthy Affiliate and how it all works then take a look at my Wealthy Affiliate Review Here.

  3. Brittni Sue says:

    Hi Paul! I’ve been wanting to start an ‘At Home’ business for some time now. I don’t have huge expectations …. just something to supplement my income and get my creative juices flowing! Ha Ha

    But where to start is always the issue. I had never heard of the Retail Merchandiser option before. Thanks for providing such helpful Information. By the way ….. I love the ‘Business Motto’ you go by. I think I’ll post that on my refrigerator and read it often for inspiration!

    • Paul says:

      Hahaha…yes I like that motto too. it is what made me pursue many of my business endeavors and never regretted any of them. The main key I find to becoming successful with any business be it home based or online is to remain determined and persistent. Wealthy Affiliate uses the same type of ideology and it has paid off for many of their members.

      Cheers

      Paul

  4. Matthew says:

    I had no idea you could become a merchandiser so easily like this without running a company to handle everything. How much time does it take if you want to become a retail merchandiser and how much money can you realistically expect to earn?

    The Wealthy Affiliate is a very great place to learn marketing though – and it has many free lessons too.

    • Paul says:

      The time it takes to start a retail merchandiser company is dependent on many factors. If you are like us, we only had to find one customer. We provided service once a week; that means we worked 4 days per month, and we made just as much doing that than my wife returning to her full-time job. That is, of course, taking into account what we were able to claim as tax deductions being a business, and what we saved by not having to send the children to daycare, parking costs at her job and commuting. Then we’re not even talking about how much more time we were able to spend with our family.

      If we had access to Wealthy Affiliate knowledge and its platform at the time, I’m sure we could have made the business into a full size merchandising and marketing business.

      Cheers

      Paul

  5. Gomer Magtibay says:

    I agree with your motto that you don’t have to be great to start, but you need to start to be great.

    Now, going back to the topic, I have several friends whom I interviewed to see what they do for a living. They said, they were merchandisers. That made me wonder what the heck are merchandisers?

    Thankfully, you came up with this post. Aside from learning what merchandising is, I also gained ideas that can sometimes be translated into an actual profitable business. Thank you for this post.

    • Paul says:

      Hey Gomer,

      It is a booming business in the retail sector yet many people do not know what it is or flat out did not know it existed.

      We were those people that did not know it existed as an option for a private business that you can manage with a work from home office base.

      I did some retail merchandising for Canada Dry pop company when I was a teenager. At the time I had no clue or cared about how it all worked. Back then, I would go to retail grocery stores where the transport had already delivered their stock for that day. I would proceed to the soda pop aisle, take note of what was needed to fill the shelves, then go to the back inventory area of the store. Load up a skid with what I needed from the newly delivered stock, fill the shelves, align labels to the front, make sure signage was in good form and then place the remaining stock in its assigned spot in the back. The Canada Dry merchandiser would only go on the days of delivery. During the reaming days of the week, staff from the store were responsible at restocking the shelves.

      This is a practice that is done for a majority of companies that have their products in retail stores. Depending on the product and volume agreements are made withe the retailer on how much cost is added to the delivered product to cover this service. If it is young company trying to get increased exposure in the store may do this free of charge to the store owner. Or the same can be the same where a new store is trying to get a well known product in their store, they may be willing to pay a premium to have them manage that service.

      In the case of Canada Dry, they used their own employees to go around to fill the shelves. Many other companies hire agencies or independents like we were to do the job.

      I am glad you enjoyed my post and hope your friends can get some added pointers to reach amazing success in the retail merchandising business.

      Cheers

      Paul

  6. Phil says:

    Your site is certainly a great platform to learn how to launch any business from home or online.

    We have definitely landed on our feet here with understanding how to start a retail merchandising business. The experience you and your wife have with starting your merchandising business and seeing that it was successful for 7 years is a testament that anything can be done- even without formal training in that field.

    I hope mane people get the opportunity to see this post and learn that Wealthy Affiliate is definitely one of the best learning platforms that is out there.

    WA is so interactive, and a great place for people to begin a part-time or a full-time career.

    The work from home option should seriously appeal to the masses.

    Cheers,

    PB

    • Paul says:

      We were fortunate to have the opportunity and experience with retail merchandising. It opened our eyes that there are business opportunities out there that many people don’t realize exist. Retail merchandising definitely falls into that category. I’ve seen people fill up shelves, changing stickers and updating prices but just assumed they were staff from the store, paid as stocking personnel.

      When we found out that many of them ran their proper merchandising business we wanted to find out more. We talked to them, asked some questions, then talked to some representatives. Our best success were with big box renovation/hardware stores. Where big name products would have regional representatives doing product demonstrations and promotions with contractors. That is where we found our best leads.

      You can also go to the contractor desks and ask who is the representative for a particular product. As I mentioned in the blog, check out the store and see which products are in need of better representation. Take a before picture, fix up the display if you can and take an after picture.

      Prepare a website that you can direct the representative for further information. I still suggest using a web hosting site like Wealthy Affiliate. Not only to host your website, but you can purchase and register your domain name and get a ton of marketing training as well.

      Heck, you may end up doing the same as we do now online instead of starting a merchandising business.

      Wish you the best of success.

      Paul

  7. Julian says:

    Hey Paul and Brenda,

    Great post. It sounds pretty interesting.

    I never really gave merchandising any thought before. But it sounds like you can make some decent coin.

    If I were to get started (or try to at least), do you have any merchandising agencies you’d recommend in Canada?

    Thanks,
    Julian

    • Paul says:

      Hey Julian

      It is amazing how many home based businesses exist where you can earn an income. Merchandising is one of those businesses that most people do not realize even exists.

      There are thousands of companies you can approach to do their merchandising. In Canada our best experience was with big box renovation stores like Home Depot and Rona. We linked with a representative for a drywall company. That company had their product not only in Home Depot and Rona, but also in smaller Mom and Pop Hardware stores as well. Although the big box stores pretty much manage most of the restocking because of the volume, the regional stores appreciated the extra detail a local merchandiser is able to offer. So the best advise we can suggest is to go to big box stores or local stores, see which product needs attention and contact that company’s regional representative.

      Cheers

      Paul and Brenda

  8. Jake Powell says:

    I love your how to get started as retail merchandiser points and completely agree with your comments on WA. I’m a member of Wealthy Affiliate myself and can’t speak highly enough of it. It really is a platform that anyone at any level can get started with and you’ve made it really clear. What do you like the best about WA?

    • Paul says:

      I have along list of things I like about Wealthy Affiliate WA I could never list them all here.

      You can read my review of WA here or anybody can go directly to Wealthy Affiliate by clicking here to sign up for free an see it all for themselves.

      The try it out for free and then stay for free only if you want was the first thing that sold me on WA.

      pbworkfromhome believes in you but you need to start to make progress towards success

      Paul

  9. Oliver Chamberlain says:

    I thoroughly enjoyed this article, mainly because while I have never considered being a retail merchandiser, and probably still wouldn’t, even after reading this article, you made a lot of points to make me at least consider that it could be a very viable business for me.

    I think you did a very good job on educating someone like myself, who was otherwise, very uneducated on how to become a retailer.

    Great article!

    • Paul says:

      I remember many customers in the stores approaching us thinking we were store staff. We we explained who we were and what we did, almost everyone we spoke to had no idea that type of business existed.

      Retail merchandising is one of those hidden gems that people know exist but had no idea what it is called or how it all works. They know it all gets done by someone, but how people get paid as a merchandiser…they have no clue. Many automatically thought we were paid minimum wage to do that type of business.

      When we explained we only did it as a part time business 4 days a month and made the same as when my wife was working as laboratory technologist their eyes opened in interest.

      I think that is the same for Affiliate Marketing. People know it exists but have no clue that is what it is called and they have no idea how it all works.

      I was in the same boat. I knew Affiliate Marketing existed but I wanted to figure out how it worked.

      Then I came across Wealthy Affiliate and learned about Affiliate Marketing.

      You can check out my blog and explanation ==>Here

      Cheers

      Paul

  10. Michel says:

    Wow, this is a whole new area in which you can build out a website and promote your services.

    I have never even thought of being a retail merchandiser, in fact, I never even knew the job existed until today.

    What experience did you have in this area before you got your first break? Did you do a marketing course?

    • Paul says:

      It is surprising to see the various home based business opportunities that exist.

      We didn’t have any marketing experience when we started our merchandising business. We did our research and were able to explain the advantages a local business would have that other agencies could not provide. Unlike huge marketing agencies that manage hundreds if not thousands of stores we only managed about a dozen. This allowed us to provide a personal touch. This was a niche area that was never tapped into in our area. We were able to build strong business relationships with managers in the stores we visited. In turn the store managers were able to put a face with the brand making it more personable and trustworthy. Needless to say when the stores wanted to renew contracts for primary distributors of products, it was easier for the representative of that company to acquire the contract.

      It would certainly help if you have some marketing background to have a better understanding and ability to communicate with the appropriate lingo. In retrospect we would have done a little more homework on that part.

      Now, with the added marketing training from Wealthy Affiliate, there is no doubt we would be better prepared for that same type of endeavor.

      Cheers

      Paul and Brenda

  11. Dennisd1 says:

    Hey Paul, this was very informative. I’ve seen people in Loews or Home Depot straightening merchandise or adding signage but always thought they were employees. I never associated it with a business.
    I like your approach to making oneself marketable. Knowledge is the key to anything we choose to do in life, whether it’s investing, product sales or internet marketing.
    The best to you in your future endeavors.

  12. greg smyth says:

    Hi Paul and Brenda,

    Your article shows just how good you are at Merchandising. For anyone wanting to get into this industry, you provide excellent detail on what is necessary to be successful as an independent merchandiser.

    The use of Wealthy Affiliate as a means to leverage your business is an advantage most people would not think of doing.

    I’m also a member of wealthy Affiliate, and can endorse the Education/Training as being the best online.

    Cheers

    .

    • Paul says:

      A retail merchandising business is one of those areas that many people do not realize exists. I am intrigued by these type covert businesses. I still remember trying to explain what we do to friends and family.

      They would say…you get paid for that?

      We were getting paid more per hour compared to my current RN job. It really did work well for us in that current situation. It would have been nice to have continued but we do have to make choices to balance life and work.

      Our current online business allows us to have the ultimate flexibility. Wealthy Affiliate has provided us the knowledge and support at creating our online business.

      Cheers

      Paul

  13. Andres Santos says:

    Nice article. I’m a retail merchandiser, but I work with an agency. I do a lot of work at Best Buy and Walmart. The hard part doing it the way I do it is finding an agency that can provide you with plenty of work. I never thought about approaching the companies directly. This is something I will definitely look into. Your article will be very helpful in doing this.

    • Paul says:

      You have a distinctive advantage with the experience gained already as a retail merchandiser working for an agency. Now you just need to get some contracts directly from the manufacturers or distributors.

      Another way to get retail merchandising contracts as an independent is to approach small start up companies that are just in the stage of introducing products into local stores.

      Small start up companies may not have the financing available to hire those retail merchandising agencies or may also be oblivious to this service being available.

      I continuously see small start up companies on store shelves here and there, trying to get their brand noticed over the big boys. This is a niche area that is available to the independents to make their mark.

      This reminds me of a Health Show I went to the other day and there was this guy named Pete. He was a baker and had his own small bakery/store in the city. He was at this health show to promote his gluten free bread that tasted superb.

      So here was a guy with a marvelous product and was trying to get his product known. He had the product in a couple of local stores but he was having a hard time to manage them all.

      That would have been a here is my card opportunity…if I were still in that business. Now keep in mind that some of these products are managed not by agencies but franchises. Where people buy the franchise where they need to have a truck, with the brand name and they are assigned a certain number of stores to stock.

      But that doesn’t mean it is impossible to start a merchandiser business. There are countless of opportunities.

      Best of luck in starting your own retail merchandiser business.

      Cheers

      Paul

  14. Travis Smithers says:

    Great article about finding an edge on cornering some work against the larger companies.

    Like the chipmunk analogy to get your point across.

    Just goes to show this mentality can work towards just about anything when looking to make money.

    When it comes to having an online presence. Can Wealthy Affiliate be used even if you’re not doing just affiliate marketing?

    Thank you for all the great advice!

    • Paul says:

      You can certainly use the membership and training provided by Wealthy Affiliate in many other ways than just affiliate marketing.

      With the training and support from Wealthy Affiliate you can use that knowledge to start and support any business. You not only get to build your website (s) with constant support from staff and members but you can use your new online knowledge to leverage your business to new heights.

      I am an affiliate with other web hosting sites like Wix, but I will continue to recommend Wealthy Affiliate.

      You can try it out for free yourself ==> Click Here

      Cheers

      Paul

  15. Robert says:

    Hey… Nice article. I have been exposed to merchandisers for Home Depot, Best Buy, and Walmart while they were doing their work.

    The amount of work concerned me but you did answer that question in you article.

    You approaching the companies directly really set you apart as a professionals from the others.

    I think many will benefit from your article and am very glad for you with your happiness with Wealthy Affiliates.

    • Paul says:

      Retail merchandising or visual merchandising is work. You must separate the store stocking person from retail merchandisers. Many people confuse the two very different roles. Stores do have staff that ensures that the shelves are stocked with a product but is as far as they go. Store managers or supervisors will ensure that the stock on the shelves is complete and the appropriate pricing is labelled.

      Retail merchandiser’s role does overlap that of the store stock person or supervisors role but takes the side of the product company to ensure their brand is represented in the proper way. The merchandiser will ensure that product or company’s brand has up to date signage, visual displays and pamphlets are in place.

      Wealthy Affiliate has changed our lives for the better in so many ways. It is a whole different way to market products for companies. Click Here To Learn More

      Cheers

      Paul

  16. Steen says:

    Hello Paul!

    This is very similar to the method that I used when I started my transport company.

    I had a deadline and I created a pile of business cards.

    Then I went door to door to many relevant and also less relevant companies to offer my service.

    I made a business plan and saved a small sum money.

    I must say…it actually paid off.

    Even without a truck for the first month, I gained enough business to sustain my expenses.

    I later got a truck which increased my scope.

    I played through the whole-process. All the mistakes needed to be made to build something up.

    Unfortunately, I burned out and got tired of the role of business leader.

    Especially after I got employees.

    My question to you is about how to avoid the burn out when you run a full-time work alongside.

    Steen

    • Paul says:

      Hey Steen,

      I don’t believe there is one answer to that question. I think it boils down to the individual and what they can manage in their life at that given time.

      No business is worth for you to burn out or become ill in anyway.

      You need to take care of yourself first.

      Every day you must put time aside for yourself. Time to do something that you enjoy and find peace. It can be meditation, working in the gym or going out for a coffee or drinks with friends.

      Whatever it is you must try an balance work, business and play time…and don’t forget to about your minimum 7 to 8 hours sleep per night.

      Cheers

      Paul

  17. Margaret says:

    Great post with heaps of information and very helpful especially to anyone like me. I did not know about merchandising before. I always thought companies had employees who did that. The only thing I am a bit confused about is how you get paid. If you are going into stores and making sure their merchandise is displayed well do you get paid for each store you visit? Do you also recruit stores to stock the merchandise?

    • Paul says:

      Great questions!

      We charged a flat rate per store. We would visit each store weekly. Depending on the size of the displays and amount of stock they had in the store we would adjust the price. Now we didn’t get into making or setting up displays, we only maintained them. Otherwise we would probably have a different rate for display set ups.

      As for getting new stores that would be the role of the sales representative. In our case we only did big box stores with a high volume of products flowing through. The sales representative would have to deal more with the big box store corporate headquarters to ensure they stayed with their product. Having people like us helped them sell as the sales reps were capable of showing how they have a local company like ours where we are able to go in and speak with those on the ground floor weekly.

      Cheers

      Paul

  18. Thia says:

    Hi,

    Thanks for sharing your story! I love the personal touch and testimony. I is great to hear it from someone who actually walked the talk. And you prove that anything is possible. You share great tips that really assist and make one think a bit before jumping right in. Thanks for sharing!

    Thia

    • Paul says:

      It was a wonderful experience and opportunity to be a retail merchandiser. I only wish I knew more about websites and online marketing at that time where we could have leveraged our business further. No regrets in what we accomplished but knowing what I know now we could have accomplished so much more at that time. The education we acquired from Wealthy Affiliate could have made us into a national company.

  19. Maria says:

    First of all, I love your motto! It’s awesome, I will write it down and attach it close to my computer, thanks 😉

    Second thing, You have explained very well how to become a retail merchandiser. I actually thought it was about buying from producer and selling to a customer through a website… I was a little bit out of tracks there…

    So, now I understand that retail merchandisers are those who I used to see in the supermarket (where I worked) to put in order and refill missing items in one specific product stand.

    I also love the advice you give for finding regional reps in stores… look products lost on the shelves, not well organised take a picture and clean it up and then take another picture! That’s something I could definitely see me doing 🙂 (Actually, my 3 year old son does that. If he sees disordered shelves, he will start to reorganise them. Becoming a retail merchandiser could be good job choice for him.)

    Keep up the great work!

    Maria

    • Paul says:

      Hahaha…retail merchandising can certainly be a great job for your son.

      It was a surprise to us as well when we realized that retail merchandisers can be a private business. It really worked out well for us at the time. It allowed us to have when we had young children.

      Taking the initiative to show before and after pictures can provide the product representative what they may be missing. I think it would be ideal for smaller companies that only sell their product locally in limited amount of shops. The company owners may not have the time to go from store to store on their own and may think they can’t afford to hire another employee or an agency to manage the merchandising.

      That is where you can come in as a small business with little overhead and a good knowledge of local stores you will have the advantage over the retail merchandising agencies.

      Best of luck Maria

      Cheers

      Paul

  20. Mike Jay says:

    Paul, I appreciate you sharing your offline experience as a parallel to your online business. This article helps me to see some of the mistakes I made in the past in my own businesses.

    It’s true that the rules of doing business offline still apply online. I wish you all the best!

    Blessings,
    Mike Jay

    • Paul says:

      You got it, Mike!

      There is no doubt that today we need to be present in our business not only offline but need to leverage your business in the online word as well. 

      All the best my friend.

      Paul

  21. Benson says:

    I agree with you on the need to be educated in the area of marketing.

    If really your goal is to make money in this business, do yourself the favor to first get some basic education on how to market online and offline.

    If you have the privilege to ask most successful people about the secret to their success, they all have one thing in common. They are continually learning. Whether it’s reading books, going to seminars, or taking courses, continuously expanding your mind is a fundamental key to success.

    • Paul says:

      That is some great advice…keep learning, expand your knowledge in all aspects. When starting a business today you must think of both the offline and online aspects as they work in unison.

      That is another reason I am so impressed with Wealthy Affiliate. They didn’t just create a web hosting site and stop there. They continually work at keeping their site fresh with new services.  They add new training, webcasts every week and with all the new members that join share all their stories and experiences. It is an ever growing and evolving community well worth the free membership to try out. 

      Try it out for free by clicking ==> Here

  22. Chris says:

    Hey Paul

    I came across your post and found it interesting. I remember working in store when I was younger and we did the merchandising in house.

    I would never have thought that someone would be able to get this type of work you described.

    Is it only with big box stores or is it possible to become a merchandiser with smaller outfits?

    • Paul says:

      It’s not limited to Big Box Stores as the merchandiser is serving the product, not the store. So if the company you contract with has their merchandise in small mom and pop type stores then you would be going to those smaller stores as well. In general though the companies that have the resources to pay for a retail merchandiser are those have products within in high volume big box stores.

      The stores don’t only rely on the products contracted retail merchandisers. As you mentioned, you worked as a merchandiser hired by the store which was likely more of stocking the product and displaying it according to the product company’s display plan. 

      It is the contracted retail merchandiser that visit regularly to ensure that the product is displayed appropriately and working with the sales representative, encourage the store owners to display the products in key areas in their store.

      Cheers

      Paul

  23. Marie says:

    Great advice on how to become your own boss. Knowing how to make money from home is the first step to becoming your own boss and running your own business. Wealthy Affiliate sounds like an excellent platform to use to begin your business. I’ve never heard of retail merchandising before. What a great idea and well explained.

    • Paul says:

      A retail merchandising business is one of those services that exists everywhere but few people understand how it works. We have only scratched the surface in explaining the multifaceted retail merchandising business. 

      There are many opportunities available out there. It only takes an ACTION for the wheels to start turning.

      Wealthy Affiliate provides that little boost that many people need to take that first ACTION. 

      There free membership provides enough information to plant the seed for action. If affiliate marketing or online business is not for you the training at Wealthy Affiliate can still help you in many areas for starting a business.

      Cheers

      Paul

  24. John says:

    Hi Paul, thanks for your post. Sounds like a great part time job. I have seen merchandising people in supermarkets and hardware stores. I have often thought of asking them about their job. With your post I have some insight now.
    I am going to pass your website onto my sister as I think a part time job in merchandising will suit her brilliantly.
    Cheers John

    • Paul says:

      Thanks John,

      Ideally your sister should look at the option of creating her own retail merchandiser business that she can manage from her home.

      That way, she can have better control on the hours she works and the fee she wants to charge for services. Most merchandising agencies will only pay a little above minimum wage while they keep a high percentage for themselves. 

      We thought about expanding our little business into a full fledged retail merchandising and marketing agency but circumstances at the time proved prohibitive.

      Perhaps if we knew about Wealthy Affiliate and the support available we may have gone for it at that time.

      Cheers

      Paul

  25. Alyssa says:

    Hi Paul,
    I had no idea what retail merchandising was until I read your article. What intrigues me, of course, is the opportunity to add it to my family’s portfolio of side hustle. Sounds like it provided you and your wife some extra income and flexibility with schedules. We want to make the shift from Mon-Fri 8-5 cubicle jobs to earning money in more schedule flexible ways. My husband is the kind of guy who never met a stranger and has the gift for gab and overdelivering on customer service. I’m more of the behind the scenes, planning, market research type. I think we’d make a good team in retail merchandising and will look into it more!
    Alyssa

    • Paul says:

      Retail merchandising was a lot of fun for us. We really enjoyed it when we went around to the stores together. We were fortunate to only have to work 1 day per week to make it worthwhile at that time and we only had stores within our city to visit. If circumstances were different we probably would have pursued it further to make it a full time business and keep away from the 9 to 5 cubicle lifestyle. Wish you the best of luck on your adventure in starting your own home based business.

      Cheers

      Paul

  26. Kegan says:

    Fantastic! 

    Sounds like a really fun and cool job to get into – love the tips on understanding marketing! 

    You’re right, in fact, MOST super successful business owners/entrepreneurs, especially in the tech age didn’t go to a fancy business school, and in some cases didn’t do well in high school either! 

    It’s all about learning about marketing and having the right attitude.

    • Paul says:

      You hit the nail on the head!  

      It is ALL about learning and having the right attitude. 

      In many cases the learning comes from living experiences with support from formal training.

      The attitude can only come from the individual. 

      Most people quit before starting.

      A lot of people will only start taking action once they’ve hit rock bottom. Sometimes that is what it takes but if you can take action now, before you are in  the dumps it makes it a whole lot easier.

      If people want to learn about affiliate marketing they only need to sign up for free at Wealthy Affiliate. It is truly your one stop shop for everything affiliate marketing.

      If you haven’t signed up yet…Click Here Now for Your Free Membership!

  27. HappyB says:

    Great article.
    It is a realistic model for getting any business off the ground.
    I never realised that there was a possibility of doing merchandising as an independent business. It got me thinking and looking round at some of the larger stores we visit.
    There are certainly differences in the quality of the displays.
    You talked about taking “before” and “after” photos; how would you do the “after” one without restocking or tidying up the display?
    The bad displays were often nearly empty with broken packets etc.
    Thanks for the inspirational post.

    • Paul says:

      Starting a retail merchandising business is certainly a viable home based business anybody can start. You will see a lot of competition out there but you may be surprised to find many smaller or new businesses that are not able to pay for the big names  merchandisers. That is where smaller independent merchandisers can prosper. 

      You will need to find companies that stock local stores and find those, as you mentioned, that are either empty or left with broken boxes and products. 

      Take a picture of what it looks like empty and/ or disorganized. If there is some stock easily available, sometimes on a shelf above or below the display. 

      Re-stock the shelf and re-organize as much as you can so you can take an after picture. If you do not have the stock or tools to fix the display then just work with the disorganized or empty stocked shelf to show examples why the company needs your service. 

      While in the store check out competitive companies for the same product if available. Take a picture of those as well to show a comparison. If you can, try and find out how they are managing the merchandising services for tier products. If it is a big company, try and find out how much they would charge for their service so you can provide a cost comparison to make your sales pitch.

      We no longer manage that type of business as we started a new online business that you can read about here.

      Cheers

      Paul

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Paul And Brenda from PBworkfromhomeHello from Paul and Brenda

Combined, we have over 14 years of experience working in home based jobs and businesses. Our site will provide you with many work-from-home options. You will learn what is needed to start a home-based job or business, including how to build a website like this one.

We learned everything we needed to know about starting an online business by following the courses at Wealthy Affiliate

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