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How To Successfully Merchandise Fine Jewelry

November 30, 2016

As a designer or a jeweler, it is quite likely that you believe that each product in your collection stands for itself. Whether it’s a necklace or bracelet, a watch or earrings, the minute a customer sees it online or in-store, you want them to fall in love with it immediately. Most likely, you are hoping to achieve an instant spark that stops them in their tracks, takes their breath away and has them thinking “This is it?!”

Components of Good Store Merchandising

Should customers think of jewelry as meeting the love of his or her life? While it may sound extreme, it is the essence of what consumers feel when they come across the perfect item at a higher price point than they may want to buy. You need to leverage that moment of connection to make the sale. So how do you do that? By properly merchandising your product.

According to professor R. Srinivasan, merchandising influences approximately two-thirds of all sales. Furthermore, it costs only 1% of total sales and yields a 10-15% increase in total sales if implemented correctly. For jewelers, merchandising is far more psychological than it is for other areas of consumer retail. Apparel and footwear are easy investments, but accessories that finish an ensemble are based on choice and disposable income, not need. Because of this, jewelers have to sell to the emotional aspects of their customers in order to be successful.

Put Your Product In Contextglasswing-3

In your store, put jewelry, watches, and other fine accessories in locations that put the item’s use and purpose front and center. If it is merchandised with apparel and footwear, think of ways to make the accessory equally emphasized or even overly emphasized in relation to what it is displayed next to. Make artistic displays in the decompression zones of your store that attract the customer into the displays through the appearance of an installation. Online, it is usually worth the investment to employ a graphic designer to create the digital assets needed for merchandising and marketing. They can wrap digital designs around your key items that make them stand out. Remember to keep in mind the who, what, where, when, and why’s for each customer type you have, as most retailers have more than one.

Cross Promote Your Jewelry

Jewelers often forget to leverage cross-promotional store events to drive sales, especially during the holidays. Talk to neighboring retailers about ideas that could be mutually beneficial to both/multiple businesses.

  1. Could you host a talk by someone your customer base would want to hear from?
  2. Could several of you host a private charity event where a portion of each sale is given to a worthy organization?
  3. Are there any ways your businesses could participate in the events related to a professional organization?

Co-locating events with a set of retail partners, professional organizations and charitable events are fantastic as shopping becomes a natural action related to the topic the event is centered around. Just take a look at how retailer Ron Robinson has had sell-through success with items costing $750–$7500.

Invest In Photography

Photography is important in our digital savvy world; visuals are the way your customers interact with your product. Through Instagram, Snapchat, and other social media platforms, retailers have a dimensional way to showcase products through video and images. Unless you are a great photographer, then most likely you work with a professional to shoot your jewelry. You want to be able to display styling versatility; in the end, you should have multiple images from different angles taken on white backgrounds.

When working with a photographer, make sure he or she can act as product stylist as well, more stylized images to give the item the context mentioned above. Also, make sure that detail shots are taken with a macros lens (usually a 60mm or 100mm give fantastic results) to show facets and details that are diffused in ordinary shots. If your photographer has access to a product shot kit that can give you 3D images, by all means, make the investment in their production. Those images can be used on more advanced features offered on your retail site. Above all, work with a professional who understands how to create balanced, consistent images so that the brand story is cohesive. Bad photos will not sell pricier items.glasswing-2

Emphasize The Benefits Of Customization

Product customization is becoming more and more commonplace with retailers today, especially online. Customization gives customers the ability to make something that is almost entirely unique to them by letting them choose specific materials, stones, and designs. With jewelry, research has shown that the uniqueness of a piece is often a key driver in customer purchases. While there are number of factors surrounding customers that make one-of-a-kind investments, the key is to establish the value in investing in such an item.

Whether you employ a few or all of the tactics involved in reaching more affluent customers, make sure that you keep your customization options simple. Offering too many variations can eat away at profit margins. If you do not currently offer your customers customization, you may be hurting your bottom line and eroding customer retention. Since 54% of consumers would consider ending their relationship with a retailer if they are not given tailor-made offers, customization is way to stay ahead of the game.

Plan For Success

According to Retail Touchpoints’ report, The Era I Enterprise: Ready For Anything, retailers have increased revenue by more than 10% by pleasing their customers on the individual level and delivering what their customers want. Strategic and successful merchandising can help you connect with your customer in micro-moments across their entire shopping journey. Go above and beyond for your customers, anticipate their needs, bring value to their lives, infuse your brand story throughout the entire customer journey and empower your staff to go the extra mile. By leveraging a little creativity in merchandising you can achieve a love at first sight moment mentioned previously. When each customer is at the center of the merchandising universe, everyone wins.


This post was originally written for client JA New York and their industry blog Jewelry Logic