Last Updated: November 10, 2020

Have you ever wondered how much a product on a store shelf costs? Not the listed price of course, but the actual price the store paid for it. When businesses need to stock up on goods, they seek out wholesale sellers to give them discounts for buying those goods in bulk.

Negotiating these business deals are wholesale buyers, professionals who meet with suppliers and work out contracts between a retailer and a seller. Read on to discover how wholesale buyers enable stores to stay in business.

What do they do?

Location and Opportunity

According to, several locations are most in need of wholesale buyers, including:

  • New York, NY
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Houston, TX
  • Philadelphia, PA
  • Miami, FL

Managing a retail store requires a clear understanding of market conditions, pricing, and demand. For wholesale buyers, this is especially true. If a buyer decides to buy too much of a product from a supplier and the demand isn’t there, that cost affects the overall performance of the store.

Wholesale buyers need to clearly understand market conditions, and analyze various reports to determine what to stock in any given month. They frequently stay in contact with wholesale sellers, entering into new partnerships, and ensuring negotiations lead to fair deals for both parties.

As they choose between sellers, they ensure product quality is high and set at a fair price. They attempt to get a retailer the “biggest bang for the buck” on any deal they enter into. To determine market conditions and negotiate business deals, they work with other marketing professionals, including:


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Wholesale buyers understand the best times to buy products, who to buy them from, and how to price those products while meeting demand. They usually work in lower-level agent positions before moving up, allowing them to get to know the various suppliers and wholesellers they’ll be interacting with daily.

Many wholesale buyers earn bachelor’s degrees in marketing, though some businesses only require GEDs or high school diplomas.

Becoming a Wholesale Buyer

Businesses typically pay wholesale buyers salaries between $40,000 and $50,000, though this largely depends on the size of the business. Wholesale buyers who must manage large inventories and work through multiple business contracts might earn higher wages.

If you’re interested in learning more about a career in wholesale buying, contact schools offering degrees in marketing.