A pricing specialist plays an important role in the success of a retail store. Essentially, it's his duty to ensure that the prices of products are competitive with other stores, but bring in enough money to maintain an adequate profit margin. The primary responsibilities of the position include analyzing industry trends, setting up store promotions, making appropriate markdowns, managing store personnel and analyzing sales data.
In order to perform his job effectively, it's necessary for a pricing specialist to continually analyze industry trends. For example, he might spend time researching what products are currently selling well and see how much competitors are charging for that product. He may also create customer surveys to determine what the consumer demand is for a certain product. Knowing this information is an integral part of the job, and ultimately dictates which products his store carries.
After a pricing specialist is familiar with industry trends, he will set up store promotions that feature popular products. In order to maximize sales, it's up to the specialist to capitalize on trends and set up special displays on items that are hot at the moment. For example, during the Halloween season, he may set up a display that features masks and costumes. This is meant to drive as many customers as possible to these products, and should increase sales.
Another part of this job position is making appropriate markdowns when needed. For example, if a clothing store has leftover swimming trunks at the beginning of autumn, the specialist might lower prices by 20 percent. The goal here is to get rid of surplus stock and prevent profit loss. As a result, a pricing specialist must be an efficient decision maker who is able to see the big picture.
Effectively managing certain store personnel is also an important part of the job. While the pricing specialist doesn't typically have the same authority as a store manager, he is usually still responsible for managing some employees. For example, he might instruct the sales staff on where to shift merchandise and demonstrate how to set up displays. He will also monitor employee performance and execute disciplinary measures if needed.
Analyzing sales data is an additional duty of a pricing specialist. As sales trends come and go, it's his responsibility to determine how well his store did fiscally on its investment on a product. As he obtains data over time, he will use that information to make better decisions in the future.