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What Is a Retail Vendor?

In layman’s terms, a vendor is an individual or a company that offers a service or makes goods available to another company. A Coca-Cola bottler is a vendor to the local grocery store. A manufacturer who produces goods to sell to wholesalers are vendors to retailers. In the same way, a vegetable street vendor selling in downtown business districts is a vendor to customers. There are a wide variety of types of vendors across a range of industries. 

The Most Important Skills of a Retail Vendor

Just like business owners, retail vendors need guts and grit to compete and succeed. There is no one type of person for the job, as most skills can be learned. You don’t even need a fancy school diploma! However, most retail vendors are self-driven people who understand the basic principles of sales. They have soft skills such as good communication skills, organizational skills, and a knack for working with people. If you’re wondering how to become a vendor, consider if you have any of these common skills:

  • Product Knowledge
    Product knowledge is first and foremost the most important skill a retail vendor needs to master. Without it, and you won’t sell a thing. Product knowledge is vital to hone your sales pitch so your customer will buy your product or service from you rather than from your competition.
  • Customer Service
    Many people agree that the days of great customer service are gone forever. This is your chance to prove them wrong. Offering assistance to current and potential customers, fixing problems, answering questions, and giving them the confidence you can deliver are all part of the customer service experience. Building strong vendor relations will keep your customers coming back, and is key to becoming a successful retail vendor.
  • Positive Attitude
    This seems obvious. But a positive attitude can be the difference between making a sale and walking away empty-handed. Even in stressful situations, an optimistic attitude can mean a positive outcome.
  • Sales Goals
    Confucius once said, “If it’s obvious that the goals can’t be reached, don’t adjust the goals, adjust the action steps.”  Sales goals are bound to time but can be just the motivator you need to work harder—for yourself and for the company you represent, as well as for both current suppliers and potential suppliers.Y

How to Become a Vendor

When it comes to taking steps to bring your goals to fruition, you might be wondering how to become a vendor? While there’s no real clear-cut path for how to become a vendor–and certainly no application process–there are some steps you should follow to ensure you’re on the right path. Taking these steps will ensure you’re gaining the necessary knowledge and experience in order to make yourself stand out and be successful as a retail vendor. Our Vendors Sign up for free

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