How to become a visual merchandiser
You can get into this job through:
- a college course
- an apprenticeship
- working towards this role
- applying directly
- a specialised distance learning course
You could do a college course before looking for a trainee job with a retailer. Courses include:
- Level 2 Certificate in Fashion Retail
- Level 3 Diploma in Retail Skills Visual Merchandising
- Level 4 Diploma in Merchandising for Fashion Retail
- Level 4 Diploma in Visual Merchandising
Some people get into visual merchandising after doing art and design courses like fashion design or textiles.
You'll usually need:
- 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
- 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course
- 1 or 2 A levels, a level 3 diploma or relevant experience for a level 4 or level 5 course
You may be able to gain relevant experience and qualifications through an intermediate retailer, an assistant buyer-merchandiser or retail supervisor higher apprenticeships.
You could get involved with visual merchandising and use your experience to get onto a specialist course or into trainee roles.
You'll usually need:
- some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship
- 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship
You could start as a retail worker and take on more responsibility for displays and merchandising as your experience grows.
You may be able to apply directly for jobs if you have retail experience and can show enthusiasm and a flair for display design.
You can do a Certificate in Display and Visual Merchandising through the British Display Society. This is a distance learning course and could help whether you're working in retail or looking for your first job.
Professional and industry bodies
You could become a member of the British Display Society for professional development and to make industry contacts.
You can find out more about working in visual merchandising from the Fashion Retail Academy.