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Getting started as a personal shopper

Updated on October 9, 2013

What is a personal shopper?

A personal shopper is someone who helps others shop by giving advice (maybe to save money) and making suggestions to their client. They are called by interior designers and collectors; people also hire them to help pick out gifts for occasions such as birthdays, holidays, or anniversaries; some are even called on to do their grocery shopping. Personal shopper are also called upon by people who have a hectic schedule. They are often employed by department stores and boutiques, but you can also freelance your expertise. A personal shopper can work independent of any affiliation with any stores. Most people will hire them to put together, organize, or redo their whole wardrobe. If you have trouble looking for a certain product, they will also help you find it. This is a small career field and because of the internet there is more opportunity.

Getting into the business

To get started in this careers the first thing and most important thing you need to know is the latest trend. Also remember that your job as a personal shopper is to save your client money, so watch out for discounts. Try building your reputation by working with an affiliate, then go out on you own. Before you go out on your own be sure to build a clientele list and testimonies; this will keep your business active and growing. Once you are on your own will need to get yourself out there and the quickest way to do that would be to start up a website, or you could hang flyers around town.

What to expect

A personal shopper is not always as easy and glamorous career as it may seem; you may find yourself working unexpected hours fulfilling a client’s (sometimes bizarre) request. Speaking of a client’s request, there will be times where you will have an unsatisfied client and running back and forth to meet their demands. This why it’s really important establish a clear understanding between the client’s needs with their budget, so they will get a clear picture in their head of what they should expect. It can be real challenging meeting the client needs. You will need to know your client’s lifestyle so that you can be one step ahead.


Education really isn’t required to get into this line of work, but you will be a lot more useful. How much you make is based off your level of education. You will learn more about fashion, trends, colors, beauty products, and accessories. An education can reduce if not eliminate the chances of you giving a bad recommendation, which could damage your credibility. This way you can be more in depth with a client’s needs, instead of being constantly sent back to the store because you got the wrong thing. It doesn’t matter the level education you have prior to take a course, which great for those who are looking for a career change.

Getting notice

Earlier I touched on a few ways to get your personal shopping business known to the public, but there is more you can do to market your business. Social media has become very powerful these days, so you could start a page specifically for your business (Facebook and Google plus). Pinterest can also make a strong impression for your business. You could launch a website and submit it to major search engines. On an offline side of marketing you could make business cards to pass out. You could host event parties to network, learn and gain new clients. Some people find it useful to advertise their brand on small give away items such as, pencils, pens, coffee mugs, or magnets. Try this: Make your own shopping bag with you logo on it and have the items they requested in there. Marketing is very important in any business, so this is one thing that you don’t want to slack off on.

This may seem like a fun and exciting business (and it can be), but it should not be taking lightly. It’s a freelance business, which means you do all the work and your time is very crucial. If you have the commitment to get the job done without being ask, then you are perfect for the job.


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