Gift Shop Manager Salary

by Rick Suttle

Whether they manage units at hospitals, hotels or on street corners at major resorts, gift shop managers are responsible for increasing sales, hiring and training clerks and monitoring and ordering inventory and supplies. If you want to become a gift shop manager, start by working in a gift store as a clerk. That way you can learn to run a cash register, wait on customers and become familiar with selling merchandise to customers. You might then be promoted to assistant manager, which is a precursor to becoming a manager. Expect to earn a relatively low salary in this job.

Salary and Qualifications

The job website reports that gift shop managers earned average annual salaries of $30,000 as of 2013. This is nearly $11,000 less than what the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported for first-line supervisors of retail sales workers in May 2011 -- $40,910 per year. Gift shops are typically lower-volume stores compared to large department or pet stores, which the BLS includes in its data. To become a gift shop manager, you need at least a high school diploma and two or more years of retail management experience. Other important qualifications are supervisory, organizational, communication and customer service skills.

Salary by Region

In 2013, gift shop managers' salaries varied within the four U.S. regions. In the northeast region, gift managers earned the lowest salaries of $26,000 in Pennsylvania and the highest of $35,000 in New York. Those in the western region made $21,000 to $33,000 -- with the lowest salaries in Hawaii and the highest in California. Gift shop managers in the southern region earned $25,000 to $35,000. And in the Midwest, gift shop managers earned the lowest and highest salaries, respectively, in South Dakota and Illinois -- $23,000 and $31,000 annually.

Contributing Factors

The more experience they have, the higher are gift shop managers salaries. They may get annual raises to boost their earnings. With a significant amount of experience, you may get a job with a larger or more exclusive gift shop and, consequently, earn more. Larger gift stores -- particularly chain stores -- have larger revenue bases from which to pay higher salaries. If you own and manage a gift shop, location is crucial to your income. You will likely earn more if you are located in a highly populated area or in a thriving business district. As an experienced owner, you can earn more by building a large client base -- repeat business -- and by occasionally giving your best customers discounts.

Job Outlook

The BLS does not report job trend data for gift shop managers. It does report job opportunities for first-line supervisors of retail sales workers, which are projected to increase 8 percent from 2010 to 2020. You will likely find more job opportunities as a gift shop manager in areas experiencing higher population growth. Turnover is relatively high in the retail industry, so jobs are also created when people quit or retire.

Photo Credits

  • Dynamic Graphics/Creatas/Getty Images