Merchants can be two types:
- A wholesale merchant works between producer and retail merchant. Some wholesale merchants only organise the movement of goods rather than move the goods themselves.
- A retail merchant sells goods to consumers (including businesses), commonly known as retailers. A shop owner is a retail merchant.
In the US, "merchant" is any person while engaged in a business or profession or a seller who deals regularly in the type of goods sold. Under the common law in the United States, merchants are held to a higher standard in the selling of products than those who are not engaged in the sale of goods as a profession. For example, when a merchant sells something, he or she is expected to give a warranty, guaranteeing that the product is fit to be sold, even if there is nothing in writing to this effect.