We do not live in the eighties anymore, when the retail landscape was dominated by small shops and stores, and each place offered a unique experience for their employees. In 2023, most retail stores are similar. Big places with clear rules, paying minimum wages to newcomers (or just slightly better), expecting you to work hard and do some weekend shifts… Logically, it doesn’t make much of a difference whether you work for one of the retail giants, or for another one. And that’s exactly why this question is much harder than it seems. When the places and employee conditions are similar, what should you focus on in your answer?

Luckily you still have some good options. First one is focusing on the brand of the store (or restaurant, fast food chain, bank, any other retail establishment). You can say that you like their products, their corporate values and working culture, or their pricing policy. Basically something that distinguishes them from the competition. Another option consists in emphasizing the logistics–not for the store, but for you. Perhaps you live just ten minutes drive or twenty minutes walk from the store. And since you prefer to spend your leisure time doing activities you like, instead of commuting to work, you decided to apply for a job in their place.

Other options include: recommendation from a friend, who already works either in the same retail establishment, or in another one but belonging to the same brand; your preference for certain type of clients (who frequent their place), your desire to work with/sell a specific product segment (cars, electronics, Italian food, vegan groceries), or your career plan and goals, which the job in the particular place meets perfectly. Let’s have a look at 7 sample answers, including each of the options I mentioned + more.


7 sample answers to “Why do you want to work here?” question for retail job interviews

  1. I just love the brand of Wegmans. Have been shopping here for last three years, and my health and health of my daughter improved tremendously. In my opinion, people should learn more about the concept you follow here, and hopefully more Americans will choose Wegmans for their shopping each year. To be honest, I would find it hard working for a typical American supermarket which sells unhealthy products full of sugar, fat, and preservatives and artificial coloring. I just wouldn’t be happy there, seeing no meaningful purpose in my job. Here in Wegmans I can see it, and that’s why I want to work here, and not somewhere else.
  2. The reason is very simple–your restaurant is just five minutes walking distance from my apartment. And since I am a family man and try to spend as much time with my kids as possible, I try to minimize the time I spend commuting to work. On the top of that, I have dined here a few times and I like the level of customer service one gets in this place. The employees also look to enjoy their time here. Considering everything, this place seems like a perfect place for me now.
  3. My friend Monica has been working for your clothing store for past three years. Hence I get from her a first-hand information on working culture, employee benefits, career growth opportunities, but also on the vibe of the place and camaraderie on the shift. I have to say I like a lot what she says about her job. And since I am not also a college student and look for a decent part time job, I decided to follow her recommendation and applied with your store. Having said that, I do not idealize this job, or your store. No doubt I’ll have to work hard here. But that would be the case in any other retail establishment too…
  4. I want to work here because I believe we should make our hobby our career. Or at least we should try to do so. I’ve been a car lover for years. You show me a random car outside, and I will tell you the name of the model, year of production, and what engine sits inside. When you have a passion for a product it is always easier to sell it. I have a passion for automobiles, and I would love to make a living selling them to customers. That’s why I want to work here, in your amazing car dealership, the biggest one in the city, and not in one of many other retail places I can try to get a job with.
  5. The main reason for my choice are my career goals. I aspire to become a vet one day. And though I know I am still just a high school student, and many years will pass until I reach my goal, I nevertheless prefer to work in the field. This pet store is privately owned, it is a small place with direct attention to customers. I believe that working here I can learn a lot about pets and their owners, and of course about various products for animals, which will no doubt help me down the road in my professional career.
  6. To be completely honest with you, I do not have any preferences. Look, I am in my late fifties, and have been unemployed for the past two years, due to the health problems I faced. It isn’t easy for me to get an interview invitation, let alone a job. Therefor I will be thankful for any opportunity to prove that I haven’t lost my working habits yet, and can still bring some value to my employer, and to the customers of some retail store. You gave me a chance in an interview, and so for now you are my no. 1 choice. I know this place doesn’t make the list of 100 best employers in the US. I also know I will have to work hard here. But I am ready to accept the job in any retail store, and try my best to meet the expectations.
  7. I choose this place because of the shift patterns. With the other job I have and my studies, I can work only in the evenings. And your fast food place is looking for someone who can come here every evening, from 7 to 11pm. That’s exactly the schedule I am looking for. What’s more, I have worked in a similar place before, and I believe to have what it takes to deliver a great service to the customers, and make sure they do not have to wait any longer than necessary.

Ready to answer this question? I hope so! Do not forget to check also 7 sample answers to other tricky questions you may face in your retail interview:

Matthew Chulaw
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