Retailing.Key Vocabulary




Key Vocabulary




Retailing is the general term covering all forms of selling goods to the public. It is a profitable sector in the UK, especially for larger food retailers.

Retailer - In commerce, a retailer buys goods or products in large quantities from manufacturers or importers, either directly or through a wholesaler, and then sells individual items or small quantities to the general public or end user customers, usually in a shop, also called store. Retailers are at the end of the supply chain

Retail businesses in the UK are usually classified according to the number of shops or outlets they have.

The smallest operations, such as local grocery or convenience stores are called single outlet retailers. These are independent businesses run from one shop.

Small multiple retailers operate a maximum of nine shops, all selling the same range of products.

Large multiple retailers (also known as chain stores) are the big names in the business, such as Marks and Spencer, Debenhams and the House of Fraser. These companies have large numbers of stores selling a wide variety of items. Some operate from out of town locations with parking facilities, known as either superstores (over 20,000 square feet) or hypermarkets (over 50,000 square feet).

Department stores, such as Harrods in London, are large shops, which sell a wide variety of products. They are organised in departments, each with its own manager, and are usually found in city centres.



  1. What are the largest chain stores in your country?
  2. Why are they popular?
  3. Who are the main retailers in your country?
  4. Do they sell a specific product or do they sell a wide variety of items?


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