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How to Become a Personal Shopper

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If you have a passion to shop or are one of those people who likes to shop until you drop, then becoming a personal shopper might be the perfect job for you. Personal shoppers typically work with clients who have no interest in shopping or who have busy schedules with no time to shop for themselves. The best part is that, although nonstop shopping isn't generally good for your bank account, working as a personal shopper lets you indulge in shopping while getting paid for it.

Choose Your Niche

While personal shoppers are commonly known to assist clients with clothing purchases, there are actually other areas of retail in which personal shoppers may assist clients. As an example, Laurie Ely, who made flyers calling herself “Laurie the Shopping Lady,” stated in an Entrepreneur article that she actually began her career as a personal shopper by shopping for the elderly. She would typically take around five shopping carts filling orders for her clients at her favorite chain store. Choosing a retail area that you want to shop in before starting your business not only helps you to know what type of shopping you will do, but it also helps you to know what type of market you will want to target for your services.

Getting Started

Although there is no degree needed for becoming a personal shopper, it is advantageous to gain experience in the retail field in which you want to shop. Since many of the larger retailers provide personal shoppers to assist their customers, initially taking a job for a retailer can help you learn the ins and outs of the business. You may also benefit from training through organizations such as the Association of Image Consultants International. This organization offers certification for personal shoppers who wish to advance their business knowledge by becoming image consultants.

Making It Official

While you do not need a business license when you are working as a personal shopper for an employer, you may need a license to operate in your state as an independent or freelance contractor. Since each state can have different requirements for licensing, check with your local county government to see what the law is for your state.

Spread the Word

Once you are ready to begin working as a personal shopper, you need to get the word out. Fox Business suggests placing ads where they will reach your desired demographics. As an example, you could put out fliers in retirement communities if you want to work as a personal shopper for the elderly. Work to establish a solid presence online through social media platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. A website and blog for your business will help people who are looking for a personal shopper to find you.


Based in Atlanta, Casey Kennedy has been writing online content since 2009. She specializes in writing about small business, careers, real estate, and ecommerce. She also enjoys writing about a variety of other subjects, including home improvement, gardening, and pet care. She attended the Academy of Art online, studying interior architecture and design while pursuing commercial flight training at Aviation Atlanta in Georgia.

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