Merchandiser Job Descriptions, Average Salary, Interview Questions

What Does a Merchandiser Do?

For a retail business, a merchandiser is responsible for managing product purchases and sales. Working closely with buyers and retail management teams, they decide which products to stock, how much inventory to purchase, and how to price products to maximize sales. In order to develop product strategies that align with the overall business objectives, they analyze sales trends, customer demand, and competitor activity.

Merchandisers ensure that products are presented and displayed in stores in an attractive and enticing manner to encourage customers to buy. Additionally, they monitor inventory levels and implement promotions, sales, and markdowns to move excess inventory. An effective merchandiser needs excellent communication and negotiation skills, a thorough understanding of the industry, and a strong understanding of consumer behavior to succeed in the retail industry.

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National Average Salary

Merchandiser salaries vary by experience, industry, organization size, and geography. To explore salary ranges by local market, please visit our sister site

The average U.S. salary for a Merchandiser is:


Merchandiser Job Descriptions

The first step when hiring a great merchandiser is a well-crafted job description. Below are real-world examples to help give you the best chance of success on your recruiting journey.

Example 1

[Your Company Name] didn’t become one of the best in the industry because we sell something different than everyone else. We’re in the lead because we sell the same things, but better. We’re searching for a seasoned merchandiser that can not only reliably keep our products on the shelves, but present them in a way that catches the customer’s eye. If you think you have what it takes to be a logistics guru, a communication expert, and a marketing wizard all in one, then we have an opportunity for you!

  • Typical duties and responsibilities
  • Accurately forecast and manage product levels
  • Communicate and maintain strong working relationships with purchasers/buyers
  • Research and interpret market trends and data and translate that into a salesfront
  • Work with display staff to arrange and present products to customers
  • Have a strong understanding of customer service and anticipate the wants and needs of our customers.

Education and experience

  • Bachelor’s degree 
  • Supply chain, marketing or retail experience: 1 year

Required skills and qualifications

  • Excellent understanding of supply chain risk management
  • The ability to accurately forecast and supply goods
  • A good communicator that can work with a wide variety of personality types
  • An excellent marketer with an eye for developing a sales strategy that works
  • Unquestionable integrity
  • Passion and dedication to the company’s mission

Preferred qualifications

  • Bachelor’s in supply chain management
  • Demonstrated supply chain, marketing, or retail success
  • Experience maintaining and managing product stock
  • Experience with market research data tools and analytics
  • Experience in understanding and prioritizing company goals
  • Experience creating compelling sales strategies

Example 2

Position is responsible for product merchandising within large volume stores (Grocery, etc.). This includes stocking shelves, rotating shelved product, setting up displays, stocking, and rotating products in coolers, organizing and rotating products in storage rooms, and moving products from storage to the sales floor. This position interacts with personnel at the store location.

This position is labor intensive, requiring lifting, loading, pushing, and pulling cases weighing from 20-45 pounds per case, as well as bending, reaching, and squatting while merchandising and moving products. This job follows a consistent schedule with specific start times and customers (opportunity to attain different work schedules with time).

Primary accountabilities:

  • Merchandise store shelving, coolers and displays with products in assigned accounts
  • Rotate products in the backroom and on the shelf
  • Transport products to and from backroom to shelf location
  • Use equipment to transport products (e.g., U Boats, hand trucks, pallet jacks, etc.)
  • Display promotional material such as signs and banners in accounts
  • Keep back room stock in neat and orderly condition
  • Communicate store issues to store managers and Pepsi management
  • Build customer relationships at the store level
  • Comply with operating procedures (e.g., scan-in/scan-out, following designated route, etc.)
  • Service accounts during designated times established by management
  • Deliver customer service (e.g., communication, rapport building, attentiveness to customer needs, etc.)
  • Ability to operate under minimal supervision (self-managed role)
  • Use hand held devices to write/input orders
  • Regular, reliable, predictable attendance

Basic qualifications:

  • 18 years or older
  • Pass the physical capabilities test (if applicable)
  • Must have car or personal transportation to access multi-store locations within assigned shift
  • Valid driver’s license
  • Proof of insurance

Helpful experience:

  • Working for a retail business or grocery store (e.g., understanding store operations, knowing the backroom and inventory, stocking aisles and shelves, etc.)
  • Moving products within a store (e.g., safely stacking and moving products on equipment such as a u-boat, hand truck/dolly, and/or breakdown, etc.)
  • Merchandising products (e.g., filling shelves, building displays, making products look attractive, rotating products, cleaning shelves, eliminating out of stocks and out of date products, etc.)
  • Managing backroom/stock room inventory (e.g., organizing pallets, stacking and storing inventory or products, etc.)
  • Serving customers (handling customer complaints, responding to customer requests, or meeting customer needs)

Example 3

Come join our team! We’re looking to hire talented individuals who can help us achieve our vision to be the leading beverage provider reaching people wherever they are with the brands they love.

Our Merchandising Team is responsible for maintaining brand presence in the market and keeping our products fully stocked and rotated on the racks, shelves, displays and coolers of our customers. They work hard, along with our sales and delivery teams, to increase our sales, market share and profit by understanding our customers, consumers and the competition. It is their knowledge and ideas that help us build cohesive marketing strategies for our brands – creating maximum impact out in the field.

If you are interested in a career merchandising world class brands, this is a great way to get started. We offer competitive pay and benefits, best in class training, cutting-edge technology and opportunities for advancement.


  • Transport product between backroom and display floor with manual equipment (for example, pallet jack, hand truck); utilizing hand tools, replenishing, facing, and rotating product; building, changing, and taking down product displays; maintaining product signage; cleaning product space; and securing damaged or defective product
  • Manages backroom by organizing and consolidating backstock (product)
  • Identifying, monitoring, and reporting backstock inventory levels
  • Perform all other duties as assigned

Required skills and experience

  • A candidate must be 18 years of age or meet the minimum state legal age requirements
  • Must have reliable automobile transportation, maintain an acceptable driving record and valid driver’s license, and maintain auto insurance coverage at least to the minimum amount specified by the Company and state law
  • Must be able to lift products from 25 lbs. to 50 lbs. on a regular basis
  • This position must pass a post-offer background and drug test

Preferred skills and experience

  • High school diploma or GED
  • 6 months related experience (ie working in a distribution warehouse environment, roofer, farmhand, grocery dock, construction, manipulating patients in a hospital/nursing home or physical therapy environment, or other positions which require continuous heavy lifting which deals with multi-temperature)
  • Beverage industry experience
  • Prior customer service experience in solving customer issues/problems
  • 1 year experience working in manual or powered pallet jacks
  • Straddle stacker certification
  • Powered pallet jack certification

Physical demands and work environment

Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. Due to the nature of our business in regard to such things as delivery schedules, order inputs, selection, and Department of Transportation Hours of Service, overtime, attendance and punctuality are essential job functions. Should an individual in this classification not be able to adhere to this requirement due to a disability, they should contact their Human Resources department to see what, if any, reasonable accommodation may be made.

Example 4

Position summary

Stock shelves, rotate inventory according to account requirements, and build displays with specific product brand merchandise. May organize backroom and inventory. Drive volume and profit growth in accounts and support sales consultants in merchandising activities.

Job responsibilities:

  • Maintains a timely and accurate call schedule
  • Follows established merchandising processes for each retailer while maintaining supplier requirements
  • Ensures point-of-sale material is placed on shelves and displays
  • Rotates product through organized processes
  • Builds and installs displays and works closely with the customer and sales to coordinate the timing and location of displays
  • Stocks shelves and displays to maximize sell-through of products
  • Coordinate and/or assist with product resets
  • Establishes and maintains a rapport with key individuals in account
  • Obtains feedback from accounts in effectiveness of their individual merchandising procedures
  • Supports team or sales rep to service accounts within requirements. Identifies and communicates individual account problems and opportunities to the appropriate account contacts and ABC Company contacts
  • Develops industry, channel, and brand knowledge on a continuous basis
  • Other duties, as assigned by the jobholder’s supervisor, may also be required


  • Bachelor’s degree in related field and/or equivalent training and work experience
  • No prior experience required
  • Basic PC skills using MS Office and other various computer programs including presentation software
  • Must be a results-oriented professional with verbal/written communication skills using diplomacy and discretion as well as customer service skills
  • Ability to multitask, work independently and/or within a team, pay attention to detail and meet deadlines
  • Analytic and Reporting skills
  • Utilize sound judgement and problem-solving skills
  • Ability to work in fast-paced, high-volume, team environment
  • 21 years of age or older
  • Possess and maintain a valid driver’s license

Physical requirements:

  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to, stand, sit, talk, hear, and use hands and fingers to operate a computer and telephone
  • Carrying and lifting 45-65 pounds
  • Frequent driving and exiting/entering vehicle to service assigned accounts
  • Overhead reaching to perform various duties


  • Accountable for meeting own targets, work is reviewed periodically
  • Problems encountered will be defined, repetitive, and routine with a solution readily available

Candidate Certifications to Look For

As a merchandiser, there’s always room to give yourself a competitive advantage.

  • APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP)
  • APICS Certified in Planning and Inventory Management
  • SCOR Professional (SCOR-P) Endorsement
  • Certified in Logistics, Transportation and Distribution (CLTD)

These certifications will set candidates apart as someone who has a solid understanding of the supply chain world, and anyone who hires them will know they can trust them to provide the proper amount of product, on time and within budget.

Sample Interview Questions

  • What’s the most creative thing you’ve done with regards to advertising?
  • What do you consider to be the most vital component of successful merchandising?
  • What makes you want to buy something?
  • What changes would you make to our current store set-up?
  • Do you have any customer service experience?
  • Would you consider yourself an effective communicator?
  • What do you know about our target audience?
  • What measures do you take to stay updated on industry news?
  • Would you consider yourself good at planning and with time management?
  • What’s an example of an alternative solution to a problem you have had on a project?
  • How much experience do you have forecasting and maintaining a retail supply chain?
  • What would you consider the most challenging part of supply chain management?
  • Can you describe a time in which you had to deal effectively with two completely different personality types?
  • Have you ever made a supply mistake? If so, how did you remedy it?

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