Retail Job Interview Questions and Best Answers

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Interviewing for a job can be a stressful experience, but it doesn't have to be. Careful preparation takes much of the uncertainty out of the experience, and ensures that you present yourself in a confident, competent way.

Before the big day, make sure you have a few appropriate interview outfits and that you have done your homework. That means researching the company you are applying to and reviewing your responses to likely interview questions. 

These are some of the interview questions that you may get during a retail or customer service job interview.

Interview Questions About You

One of your interviewer's goals is to get a sense of your personality and work style. That'll help reveal if you're a good fit for the company. Answer questions about you honestly, but be mindful of creating the best possible impression. 

    Customer Service Questions

    Working in retail or customer service means interacting with people — a lot of them. These questions help interviewers understand how you will handle common situations that arise when dealing with the public. 

    • What is customer service? - Best Answers
    • What is good customer service? - Best Answers
    • Why do customers shop at this store? 
    • If a customer leaves without paying for gas, what would you do? 
    • A co-worker is rude to customers. What would you do?
    • The credit card machine is broken. What do you say to the customers? - Best Answers
    • A customer wants to pay for $15 worth of merchandise in quarters - do you accept it? 
    • A customer wants to return a package of food that is open and half gone. What will you do? 
    • What is most important - a good product or friendly, fast service? 
    • You are scheduled to leave at 6 pm. Your replacement worker doesn't show up. What would you do?
    • A customer becomes irate with you, and demands to speak to your supervisor. How do you handle the situation?
    • You discover one of your co-workers giving free merchandise to his friends. What would you do?

    Sample Math Questions

    When you're asked math questions during a retail job interview, the interviewer wants to know that you have basic math skills. Review these tips to help you know how to confidently answer math questions during an interview. 

    Then, practice your responses by reviewing this list of common math interview questions for retail employees. 

    • The customer's purchase totals $13.93. She gives you a ten dollar bill and a five dollar bill. How much change do you give her?
    • If one bottle of soda costs $0.99, how much do three bottles cost? How much do they cost with 5% tax added on?
    • Each pot of coffee holds 6 cups. We usually sell 10 cups of coffee every 15 minutes. How many pots of coffee will you need tomake during our two-hour rush? How many pots of coffee will you need to make?
    • Potato chips are on sale at half price. They sell for $1.19. How much is 50% off?
    • A customer buys $27 worth of gas. He gives you a $50 bill. How much change do you give him?
    • 55 x 20 =
    • 24 - 48 =
    • 62 + 28 + 14 + 36 =
    • 82.20 - 53.66 =
    • 15 x 7% =
    • 8.50 x 4% =
    • 19 x 15%

    Interview Questions to Ask the Interviewer

    One of the questions you may be asked during a job interview for a retail or customer service position is "Do you have any questions for me?" 

    Have a list of questions ready to ask that will clarify the job requirements, your schedule, the flexibility of the position, and anything else that would help you decide whether you would want the job if it were offered to you.

    Remember that interviewing works both ways and asking questions is an opportunity to be sure the job is a good fit. 

    Here's a list of questions you can ask the interviewer — no need to ask them all! Make a list of the ones that are most meaningful to you, so you're prepared during the interview. 

    • How many hours per week do you expect that I would work?
    • What are the typical shifts covered by this position?
    • Are weekend/evening hours required?
    • How flexible are the hours and the schedule?
    • Do the hours vary weekly, or stay the same?
    • What are your busiest times during the day?
    • What is the busiest day here?
    • Do you schedule people for primarily the same hours every week, or do they vary greatly?
    • Are there extra hours available during the holidays?
    • How far in advance is the schedule posted?
    • How many sales associates are on the floor during a shift?
    • Is there a supervisor on during all shifts?
    • Who does your displays?
    • What is your biggest selling item?
    • Do you offer commission?
    • Are the performance reviews done by the store manager, or does a regional manager come in?
    • Does this company have a policy of promoting from within?
    • How many full-time employees does this store employ?
    • What kind of atmosphere among the employees is there at this store/shop/boutique?
    • What kind of growth do you expect to see from this company over the next five years?
    • Will I be a part of a team, or be working primarily independently?
    • Will I have the opportunity to interview with the supervisor of this position?
    • Can you describe for me a typical day in this position?
    • How would you describe your company's management style?
    • Is there an opportunity for growth within the company?
    • What do you like best about working here?
    • What do you like least about working here?
    • Would you change anything about this department?
    • If I'm offered this position, how soon would you like me to start?
    • How many applicants are you interviewing for this position?
    • Is there a dress code? What would I need to wear to work?
    • When should I expect to hear from you?