US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey

Attract and retain employees for all retail roles

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Innovation is changing how people shop while also shifting the roles and skills you need to continue meeting customer demands. Traditional retail roles are still critical in the buying cycle too. Finding the staff you need for all roles and keeping them in place is crucial.

Motivate and attract top talent with the US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey. See where your company stacks up against the competition with survey data for 236 positions across numerous position families, including central administration, distribution, e-commerce, finance/accounting, and much more. Benchmark your compensation strategy against all organizations, or narrow the data by:

  • Industry sectors and subsectors
  • Geographic location
  • Company size (Number of stores, organization revenue, store headcount, store revenue, store size)

To ensure accurate benchmarking for your organization, data is available for the retail industry as a whole, or you can select apparel manufacturing,  supermarket, or restaurant data only.

Is your workforce strategy prepared to keep up with the retail industry?
Survey # of Positions Surveyed # of Organizations
US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey 236 137
US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey – Apparel Manufacturing 53 40
US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey – Restaurant 71 19
US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey – Supermarket 103 22

*Note: Table above is based off of 2018 Retail survey stats.

  • Overview
  • Product Details
  • Pricing / Buy Now
  • Survey Schedule
  • Participating Companies
  • Position List & Sample Report
  • 2019 Participation


With compensation and benefits data for 1,952,227 employee observations, analyze your talent strategy across several parameters, including:

  • Base pay
  • Benefits prevalence
  • Benefits valuation
  • HR and industry practices
  • Incentive eligibility
  • Organization demographics
  • Short-term incentive amounts
  • Total cash compensation
  • Total direct compensation

New for 2019
The scope of the US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey was expanded in 2019 to include restaurants! The US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey - Restaurant module gives you even more data to enhance your compensation strategy.

Also new for 2019 is Mercer Job Library. This comprehensive new job catalog provides you with improved job descriptions for more accurate position matches, clearer relationships between jobs, more specializations, and much more.Learn more or view Mercer Job Library FAQs for more details.

Delivered in fully customizable formats
Survey results are delivered in Mercer WIN®, giving you access to the data through a variety of customizable parameters — including geography, industry, company size, and more. Efficiently organize and analyze the information with Mercer WIN, which enables you to:

  • Compare job descriptions side by side.
  • Change pay elements to support the right level of analysis.
  • Perform function and career-level analysis.
  • Export your data for integration into other systems (data also available as an excel file).
  • Run presentation-quality detailed or summary reports.

Salary Survey Methodology

Mercer surveys are designed using the most accurate and up-to-date market data practices. Data is collected from HR professionals at participating organizations and then analyzed for validity, thoroughness, and market representation based on the organization's size, structure, geographic region, or a combination of these factors. A minimum number of incumbents, organizations, and distinct organizations are required in order to report each data element. If minimums are not met, the market data is suppressed, ensuring you the highest level of data confidentiality.

Product Details

Survey Statistics

  • # Positions Surveyed: 236
  • # Positions Published: 236
  • # Organizations: 137
  • # Observations: 1,952,227

Based on data from the 2018 US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey. Data minimum and suppression rules account for the difference between the number of positions surveyed and published.

Data Collected

  • Base Pay
  • Benefits Prevalence
  • Benefits Valuation
  • HR and Industry Practices
  • Incentive Eligibility
  • Organization Demographics
  • Short-term Incentive Amounts
  • Total Cash Compensation
  • Total Direct Compensation

Data Analyzed

Industry Sector

  • Apparel, Fashion, Footwear & Accessories
  • Convenience
  • Department Stores
  • Electronics, Entertainment, Communications, Office
  • Grocery, Pharmacy, General Merchandise
  • Home, Hardware, Building & Garden Supplies
  • Restaurants
  • Specialty Stores

Geographic Area

  • Metropolitan Area
  • National
  • Regional


  • Number of Stores
  • Organization Revenues
  • Store Headcount for Store Manager
  • Store Revenue
  • Store Size

Sub Sector

  • Apparel & Accessories Combination Stores
  • Apparel/Accessories - Family
  • Apparel/Accessories - Infants/Children
  • Apparel/Accessories - Men
  • Apparel/Accessories - Women
  • Automotive Dealers
  • Automotive Parts & Services
  • Books/Music/Video
  • Combination Electronics etc. Stores
  • Combination Grocery etc. Stores
  • Combination Specialty Stores
  • Communications Stores
  • Convenience
  • Convenience Combination Gas/Petro & Convenience
  • Department Stores
  • Drug Stores, Pharmacies
  • Electronics Stores
  • Entertainment Stores
  • Fine Dining
  • Footwear/Shoes
  • Furniture & Home Furnishings Stores
  • Garden Supplies
  • Gas/Petrol
  • General Merchandise
  • Gifts/Novelties
  • Grocery Stores
  • Hardware
  • Home Goods & Products
  • Jewelry
  • Luxury
  • Office Supply Stores
  • Other Home Products
  • Other Specialty Stores
  • Quick Service, Fast Food
  • Restaurant Chains
  • Salon/Personal Care Products
  • Sporting Goods/Hobby
  • Wholesale Trade - Other or Combination
  • Wholesale Trade, Durable Goods
  • Wholesale Trade, Non-Durable Goods

Position Families Analyzed

  • Central Administration
  • Distribution
  • E-commerce
  • Finance / Accounting
  • Human Resources
  • Loss Prevention
  • Marketing & Sales Promotion
  • Merchandising
  • Real Estate
  • Store/Field Operations
  • Systems and Data Processing


Product Participant Non-Participant NRF Member
2019 US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey USD 1,900 USD 5,700 USD 3,800
2019 US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey – Apparel Manufacturing Module USD 1,650 USD 4,950 N/A
2019 US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey – Supermarket Module USD 1,650 USD 4,950 N/A
2019 US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey – Retail and Apparel Manufacturing Modules USD 3,050 USD 9,150
2019 US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey – Retail and Supermarket Modules USD 3,050 USD 9,150
2019 US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey – Restaurant USD 1,400 USD 4,200
2019 US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey – Retail and Restaurant Modules USD 2,800 USD 8,400

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US Retail Compensation and Benefits Survey

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Additional buying options are available. Call us to learn how you can lock in rates for two or more years and qualify for additional discounts.

Please note:

  • Individuals or companies using Mercer data for consulting services or commercial purposes are subject to different rates. Please call for more information.
  • Additional users may be added during checkout for USD 200 each per module/survey.
  • 2019 results are available for purchase and will be delivered upon survey release (mid-September).

Survey Schedule

  • Participation Opens: March 15
  • Participation Deadline: April 26
  • Date Effective: April 1
  • Report Available: September

Participating Companies

  • Aaron's Inc
  • Advance Auto Parts, Inc.
  • Albertsons Companies
  • Alex Lee, Inc. - Lowes Foods, LLC
  • Alex Lee, Inc. - Merchants Distributors, LLC
  • ASICS America Corporation
  • AutoZone, Inc.
  • Beauty Systems Group (BSG)
  • Belk, Inc.
  • Best Buy Company, Inc.
  • BevMo!
  • Big Lots, Inc.
  • Bluestem Group, Inc. - Bluestem Brands, Inc.
  • Build-A-Bear Workshop
  • Burlington Stores, Inc.
  • Canada Goose, Inc. USA
  • Car Wash Partners, Inc. dba Mister Car Wash
  • CarMax, Inc.
  • Carter's, Inc.
  • Chipotle Mexican Grill
  • Christopher & Banks Corporation
  • Coborn's, Inc.
  • Coffee and Bagel Brands
  • Consumers Petroleum
  • Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc.
  • Crocs, Inc.
  • CST Brands, Inc.
  • Cumberland Farms Inc.
  • CVS Health Corporation
  • Destination Maternity Corporation
  • Dick's Sporting Goods
  • Dollar General Corporation
  • Express
  • Fanatics Retail Group
  • FedEx Corporation - FedEx Office
  • Genuine Parts Company
  • Global Brands Group
  • GNC Holdings, Inc.
  • Goodwill Industries of Southeastern WI
  • Gordon Food Service Store
  • Hallmark Cards, Inc. - Retail Group
  • Hanesbrands, Inc.
  • Hanna Andersson, LLC
  • Harbor Freight Tools Inc.
  • Helzberg's Diamond Shops, Inc.
  • Hudson's Bay Company - Lord & Taylor
  • Hudson's Bay Company - Saks, Inc.
  • ITOCHU Prominent USA LLC
  • Ivory Ella
  • J. C. Penney Company, Inc.
  • J. Jill
  • J.Crew Group, Inc.
  • J.Crew Group, Inc. - Factory
  • J.Crew Group, Inc. - J.Crew Brand
  • J.Crew Group, Inc. - Madewell
  • Joseph Ribkoff USA
  • Kohl's Corporation
  • L Brands, Inc.
  • L Brands, Inc. - Bath And Body Works
  • L Brands, Inc. - Henri Bendel
  • L Brands, Inc. - Mast Global
  • L Brands, Inc. - Victoria's Secret
  • L.L.Bean, Inc.
  • Levi Strauss & Co, Inc.
  • LifeWay Christian Stores
  • lululemon athletica USA, Inc.
  • Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics North America
  • Macy's, Inc.
  • Mall of America LLC
  • McDonald's Corporation
  • Mills Fleet Farm
  • Navy Exchange Service Command (NEXCOM)
  • Nestle USA, Inc. - Nespresso USA, Inc.
  • Oxford Industries, Inc.
  • Oxford Industries, Inc. - Lanier Clothes
  • Oxford Industries, Inc. - Lilly Pulitzer
  • Oxford Industries, Inc. - Southern Tide, LLC
  • Oxford Industries, Inc. - Tommy Bahama Group, Inc.
  • Patagonia
  • Payless ShoeSource, Inc.
  • PETCO Animal Supplies, Inc.
  • Pier 1 Imports, Inc.
  • Pret A Manger (USA) Ltd
  • Publix Super Markets, Inc.
  • Publix Super Markets, Inc. - Atlanta Division
  • Publix Super Markets, Inc. - Charlotte Division
  • Publix Super Markets, Inc. - Jacksonville Division
  • Publix Super Markets, Inc. - Lakeland Division
  • Publix Super Markets, Inc. - Miami Division
  • PVH Corp.
  • PVH Corp. - Calvin Klein
  • PVH Corp. - Dress Furnishings
  • PVH Corp. - Sportswear
  • PVH Corp. - Swimwear
  • PVH Corp. - Tommy Hilfiger
  • PVH Corp. - Van Heusen Retail
  • Recreational Equipment, Inc.
  • Rite Aid Corporation
  • Roche Bros. Supermarkets
  • Ross Stores, Inc.
  • Sally Beauty Holdings, Inc. - Armstrong-McCall
  • Sally Beauty Supply
  • Savers, Inc.
  • Shoe Carnival, Inc.
  • SpartanNash Company
  • Speedway, LLC
  • Spencer Gifts, LLC
  • Stage Stores, Inc.
  • Target Corporation
  • The Coca-Cola Company
  • The Kroger Co.
  • The Metropolitan Museum of Art
  • The TJX Companies, Inc.
  • The TJX Companies, Inc. - Home Goods
  • The TJX Companies, Inc. - Marmaxx Group
  • The Walt Disney Company - Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media
  • The Walt Disney Company - Disneyland Resort
  • The Walt Disney Company - Walt Disney World
  • Torrid LLC
  • Trek Bicycle Corporation
  • ULTA Beauty
  • US Foods
  • VF Corporation
  • VF Corporation - Kipling
  • VF Corporation - The North Face
  • VF Corporation - Timberland
  • VF Corporation - Vans
  • VF Corporation - VF Outlet
  • Vision Service Plan - Marchon Eyewear
  • Vision Service Plan - VSP Retail
  • Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. - Walgreen Co.
  • Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
  • Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. - Sam's Club
  • Weis Markets, Inc.
  • Whole Foods Market, Inc.
  • Wild Birds Unlimited, Inc.

Position List & Sample Report

Position List

View the position list and descriptions included in this survey.

Sample Report

View a sample report of this survey for a glimpse at what’s included.

2019 Participation

2019 Survey Participation is now closed. Survey participation is open to all organizations with matching jobs and is not required to purchase results. To learn more about how you can become a participant, please contact us. As a survey participant, you do receive key benefits:

  • A discount on survey results!
  • An exclusive invitation to survey events - attend results webcasts and meetings where Mercer consultants will review the results and identify market trends and factors. You'll also be able to ask questions directly related to your organization.
  • Ensure your data is included in the market results - easily determine your market position with customized reports that compare your company data to your peers.
  • IsOrderingSetYes
  • Ordering TypeMultiLevelMultiSelection
  • RegionUS
  • Sub TitleAttract and retain employees for all retail roles
  • Short DescriptionData on pay, policies & practices, and benefits trends in the retail industry.