Market trader

Market traders sell goods like food or clothing, or services like mobile phone repairs, from street stalls or indoor markets.

Annual Salary

£7,000 to £26,000

Average UK salary in 2018 was £29,588 (source Office for Statistics)

Working hours


Future employment

There will be 4% fewer Market trader jobs in 2024.
In your local area

What's it all about?

You could work in a market run by a local authority or a privately run market like a farmers' market. Your day-to-day tasks may include:

  • visiting suppliers to buy products and agree prices
  • unloading your van and setting up your stall
  • encouraging customers to buy
  • taking money for goods
  • stocktaking
  • keeping records of goods bought and sold

You'll need to keep up to date with trading laws and local regulations.

You'll find it useful to have:

  • exprience in customer service
  • GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) in English and maths

To get started, you could work on a stall part time or at car boot sales.

You'll usually need a driving licence and your own car or van.

You may need permission to trade from your local council. If you're selling food, you'll need a food safety certificate.

You could also get into this job through an apprenticeship.

£7,000 to £26,000

Starter salary: £7,000

Experienced salary: £15,000 to £26,000

Income will vary according to your hours, location, type of goods or services, and how good you are at selling.

These figures are a guide.


You'll usually start around 5am and finish around 5.30pm. You'll work Saturdays and possibly Sundays.

You'll be self-employed so you'll decide how many days to work. You may have a stall at one market for the whole week or different markets on different days.

You could work in an indoor market or outdoors. The job is physically demanding. You'll need to lift and carry goods and you'll usually work long hours. You'll spend time travelling to buy and collect goods.

You could expand your business by taking on staff and starting up new stalls.

Skills required and how your skills match up

What skills are required?

You'll need:

  • excellent sales skills
  • negotiation skills
  • creativity to set up an attractive stall
  • business skills for deciding prices
  • maths skills for weighing goods
  • spreadsheet skills for keeping accounts
My top 5 skills from the skills bank
Please sign in to compare your skills to this job. Sign in

To save or view your choices and results you must sign in or register (takes 1 minute).

Sign in Register