Career outlook for bookseller
UK Salary Ranges
Currently employed in Scotland
What's it like?
You would promote and sell books to help people find stories they enjoy and expand their knowledge through reading.
You’d buy books from publishers or wholesalers and display them in the bookshop or online so that customers can look at them and buy them.
You’d promote the books and put the books out on shelves, tables and in the window displays. You’d answer customers’ questions and help them choose; they’ll expect you to be knowledgeable and enthusiastic.
- Serve customers and take payments for books
- Give advice, answer enquiries and order books for customers
- Do stock control, decide what you think you can promote and sell and order new stock from catalogues and directly from publishers
- Handle administration such as accounting, distributing orders, arranging deliveries and dealing with returns
You might work in a small independent bookshop, a large shop that is part of a chain, or a specialist bookshop selling, for example second-hand, religious or legal books.
You’d create a pleasant and welcoming atmosphere in the shop so people enjoy visiting the shop. You might also organise events like authors coming to read and sign their books.
Many bookshops now also use their website to sell books which are posted out or collected by customers in the store.
You might also need to sell other goods, such as e-book readers, stationery, cards and literary gifts.
In a specialist bookshop, you might consult with teachers from local schools, colleges and universities to make sure the shop stocks the correct text books, and has enough copies for the students.
As a bookshop manager you would recruit and train new members of staff.
UK employment status
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- Verbal communication
- Working with numbers
- Attention to detail
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