What Skills Do I Need as a Professional Shopper?

Lori Kilchermann
Lori Kilchermann
Professional shoppers should have an eye for style.
Professional shoppers should have an eye for style.

Professional shoppers offer shopping services for celebrities, corporations and people who are either too busy to shop or prefer not to have to go to stores and select items themselves. A sense of style, along with the ability to learn and replicate clients' likes and dislikes, is also beneficial. The ability to stay on top of trends in fashion, home decorating and gift giving is also critical for success. A good eye for color and memory for recalling details about customers' preferences will also serve a professional shopper well.

Personal professional shoppers often work in upscale department stores and boutiques to provide one-on-one service to clientele. A professional shopper typically will need to be personable and have a good memory. This type of shopper should get to know his or her clients very well in order to select the proper styles, colors and sizes. It is beneficial for a professional shopper to also understand a client's lifestyle to anticipate future needs, such as cruise wear every spring or an annual anniversary party.

Some party and event organizers hire professional shoppers to lessen their own workload. Professional shoppers should be skilled at narrowing down vast number of choices for items, such as place settings, centerpieces and table linens, so the event organizer can simply pick from a few prime options. The shoppers should also be in tune with the event's attendees in order to help with selecting other appropriate items, such as guest favors and gifts.

Corporations of all sizes often use professional shopper services to select gifts for clients, vendors and staff. A professional shopper should be aware of gift-giving trends, price points and be able to work within a set budget. Haggling and negotiation skills are also beneficial for professional shoppers, as some merchants may have price flexibility for bulk purchases or repeat customers. Generating satisfied gift recipients and being able to buy more while spending less may secure your position with a corporation.

Celebrities and executives will often use a professional shopper to help maintain or project a certain image. A shopper needs to be able to successfully select wardrobe and accessory items to mirror that image, while also making sure the client is sporting the latest styles, trends and colors. Effective communication is also key for professional shoppers, as maintaining a blog or customer email list can help promote business, generate new business and offer an opportunity to recommend new products.

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    • Professional shoppers should have an eye for style.
      Professional shoppers should have an eye for style.