A personal shopper is hired by a busy individual who has no time to do shopping on his own. The personal shopper may be called upon for a variety of tasks such as shopping for busy families, buying groceries for senior citizens, finding gifts for companies to give clients and buying home furnishings for the wealthy. Personal shoppers should have excellent interpersonal skills and a strong sense of style with experience in retailing and buying.
Personal shoppers help people to select and then purchase clothing and other items. Personal shoppers can work on a consulting basis with individuals and stores or they may work directly for a speciality or department store. People who end up in this industry often come from fields such as fashion design, marketing and communications. There is no formal training requirement, though there are some personal shopping certification programs available such as one at the Association of Image Consultants International.
As most personal shoppers join the industry on a consulting basis, becoming a part of the field can be achieved by getting a few clients, working successfully with them and then getting permission to use them as references to attract future clients. Working for a clothing or department store might be a smart way to start as you can work your way up to personal shopper for the store itself or find clients from the customers at the store. Advancement in the field comes from gaining a strong reputation and charging higher rates.
According to Simply Hired, the average salary for open personal shopper positions is £21,450 as of March 10, 2011. The median salary figures provided by State University for the position in general range between £19,500 and £37,375 per year. According to FabJob, when working as an independent contractor, the job can earn upward of £65,000 per year.
The personal shopper position's salary can vary depending on location, according to a report compiled by Salary Expert. The top two cities of the 10 surveyed for salary were New York and Dallas with £34,548 and £27,665 respectively. The two lowest salaried cities of the 10 were Charlotte and Miami at £20,658 and £22,983. The average salary of the 10 cities surveyed which also included Chicago, Illinois, Houston, Atlanta, Phoenix, Orlando and Indianapolis was £24,773.