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Buyers' Guides

Buyers' Guide



Which Options to Pick?

Some training subjects are addressed by more than one partner in the Academy. Where you have multiple choices to meet a need,the table below offers guidance where this situation exists.

Class Options Guidance
Store Operations
  • Martec’s Introduction to Store Operations presents a high level overview of all store operations activities across all retail segments except hospitality. It is suited to induction training for those new to retailing and companies that sell goods and services to retailers.
  • NRF’s Introduction to Retail Management gives a wider view of what retail managers or potential managers need to know specifically from a fashion/department store perspective.
  • NRF’s Operations class, which is also part of the NRF Retail Management Suite, reviews store operations and is more geared to the department store and non-food retail segments than the Martec offering.
  • Martec’s Store Operations class is a full review of everything that Store Operations needs to do or is responsible for. It is more suited to those who aspire to be store managers or have roles at headquarters and who need much more detailed content. Class length is roughly 10 hours verses 1 to 2 hours for the Martec Introduction class above.
Financial Knowledge
  • Mindedge has a Retail Math class which covers all the basic arithmetic formulae and calculations necessary when calculating key retail numbers. It is a good class to take if you do not have a good understanding of basic maths before you start to study the financial classes.
  • Retailtraining.com’s Introduction to Retail Finance is a 20 minute program which introduces the three main financial statements and also introduces Open to Buy. It goes on to explain the importance of financial analysis.
  • NRF’s Principles of Financial Reporting class is suited to store managers and potential store managers who need to understand and interpret financial reports, particularly related to periodic trading statements.
  • 6One5’s Managing the Finances of Your Retail Store is also suited to independent retailers and store managers and potential store managers.
  • Martec’s Retail Financials module is more geared to headquarters personnel who need to analyse a company’s financial statements to identify long term trends and performance improvement opportunities by analysing the profit and loss account, balance sheet and cashflow statement along with selected key performance indicators. Companies selling goods and services to retailers will also find this helpful.
Buying and Merchandising
  • Martec’s Buying, Category and Merchandise Management class is an introductory level class for those who need a complete overview of the buying and merchandising function.
  • Martec’s Buying and Merchandising class is a detailed drill down on all the core processes in buying and merchandising and is the next level of detail after the overview class immediately above.
  • For those seeking a qualification in category management, the Learning Evolution classes provide a comprehensive syllabus on category management suitable for both retailers and CPG companies. Certification can then be achieved via the Category Management Association process.
Space Management and Visual Merchandising
  • The NRF Retail Management Suite has an overview level component in the Merchandising Module suitable for potential store managers and supervisors.
  • The 6One5 Advanced Visual Merchandising class is a store level visual merchandising program which includes content on the importance of overall space management as well detailed input on merchandise presentation. It works equally well for chains and independents.
  • Learning Evolution has two courses - Leveraging Data for Advanced Shelving Solutions is specifically geared to shelf analysis and optimisation for retailers selling mostly continuity or year round products. It will be equally beneficial to category management retailers and the trade promotion teams in CPG manufacturing companies. It is a more in depth program forming part of a category management certification curriculum and is more suitable to chains. Space Management is specific to category management and planogram driven environments. It is a good follow on to Leveraging Data for Advanced Shelving Solutions. It covers key metrics and drivers, assessing performance, identifying changes, improving shelf productivity, identifying adjacencies and developing space management strategy at a category level.
  • RetailTraining.com has two courses – Merchandising Basics is an entry level program suitable for new sales associates and other shop floor staff. Impulse Merchandising builds on the basic class to give more insight on how to grow sales using impulse merchandising techniques. It is more suited to senior supervisors and store management and will also benefit some headquarters visual merchandising and store operations staff. Both options work well for chains and independents.
Selling and Customer Service
  • NRF’s Introduction to Selling and Service provides a basic introduction to the subject.
  • 6One5’s Best Practice Sales and Service Skills is a one and a half hour programs following 6 key steps in the sales cycle.
  • You Achieve’s Customer Service Essentials and Selling Essentials are two programmes that also provide a fairly straightforward introduction to the subject. They both require about 5 hours of study in total, though you can do it in small amounts.
  • RetailTraining.com provides a series of 21 programs, each about 20 minutes dealing with many different aspects of selling and service in a retail environment. These allow you to build a near customised retail selling curriculum for your company.

Alternatively, if you wish to know which courses are suitable for a particular job role, use the buyers’ guide search tool above to help you make your selection. This shows you the target audience for the course, the complexity of the course and more about the course and the subjects covered.

If you sell or market to retailers, download our pocket guide to our recommended training for you or your team.

You may also combine programs from more than one partner to create a more complete solution to your training needs. This can be accomplished using our curriculum.


This class is specific to category management and planogram driven environments. It is a good follow on to Leveraging Data for Advanced Shelving Solutions. It covers key metrics and drivers, assessing performance, identifying changes, improving shelf productivity, identifying adjacencies and developing space management strategy at a category level.