12132017Wed
Last updateTue, 12 Dec 2017 7pm
Floyd & Green Jewelers celebrating 25th anniversary

Floyd & Green Jewelers celebrating 25th anniversary

For Steve Floyd & Tom Williams, it seems like ...

“That guy who baby sits jewelry stores”

“That guy who baby sits jewelry stores”

Longtime jeweler fires up retired ambulance to off...

Judy Upton awarded 2017 AJA Associate Member of the Year

Judy Upton awarded 2017 AJA Associate Member of the Year

Judy Upton, owner of Judy Carter and Associates, w...

GA jeweler makes ‘Black Panther’ ring for Marvel movies

GA jeweler makes ‘Black Panther’ ring for Marvel movies

Hans and Lynn Allwicher, co-owners of Jewelry Expr...

Other News

Precious gems bear messages from Earth’s molten heart

Precious gems bear messages from Earth’s molten heart

New York Times article explores what gemstones tell scientists about the extreme forces at work deep underground 

Around 1920, Justo Daza, an experienced mine worker, and Fritz Klein, a mining engineer, were scrambling over the steep mountainside terr...

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Industry Events

GIA reports well attended Jewelry Career Fair and Open House

GIA reports well attended Jewelry Career Fair and Open House

(CARLSBAD, Calif.) - GIA’s (Gemological Institute of America) Jewelry Career Fair and Open House drew nearly 900 gem and jewelry professionals, job seekers and members of the local community to the event’s 26th anniversary on October 13. This annual e...

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On The Move

Responsible Jewellery Council expands into the silver supply chain

Responsible Jewellery Council expands into the silver supply chain

(LONDON, UK) - The Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) has announced the expansion of its material scope to include silver. As the leading standards setting and certification organization for the fine jewelry and watch supply chain, this expansion add...

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What's New

GN Diamond unveils Diamond Hunt

GN Diamond unveils Diamond Hunt

Free in-store tool designed to help retailers sell more diamonds

Qualifying a customer’s budget is a common hurdle faced by jewelers and their sales associates on a daily basis. GN Diamond listens to the common pain points experienced by jewelers and ...

Readmore

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Latest News

Precious gems bear messages from Earth’s molten heart

10 HOURS AGO
Precious gems bear messages from Earth’s molten heart

New York Times article explores what gemstones tell scientists about the extreme forces at work deep underground 

Around 1920, Justo Daza, an experienced mine worker, and Fritz Klein, a mining engineer, were scrambling over the steep mountainside terraces of Chivor, a legendary emerald site in northe...

Readmore

2017 Jewels for Children raffle raises over $9,000 for the Children’s Hospital Foundation of Richmond

10 HOURS AGO
2017 Jewels for Children raffle raises over $9,000 for the Children’s Hospital Foundation of Richmond

(RICHMOND, Vir.) - Richmond’s independent jewelers are pleased to announce that their 2017 Jewels for Children raffle raised $9,450 for the Children’s Hospital Foundation of Richmond at the Children’s Hospital Foundation Ball held November 3 at the Country Club of Virginia. The annual raffle, organiz...

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GIA reports well attended Jewelry Career Fair and Open House

12 DAYS AGO
GIA reports well attended Jewelry Career Fair and Open House

(CARLSBAD, Calif.) - GIA’s (Gemological Institute of America) Jewelry Career Fair and Open House drew nearly 900 gem and jewelry professionals, job seekers and members of the local community to the event’s 26th anniversary on October 13. This annual event at GIA’s Carlsbad World Headquarters was bust...

Readmore

IGI presents at AliExpress event ahead of Major Chinese Ecommerce Day

12 DAYS AGO

(SHANGHAI, China) - The International Gemological Institute’s (IGI) Shanghai team delivered a lecture at the AliExpress “Double Eleven Jewelry Industry Gold Sellers Training Session” in Hangzhou, China. AliExpress is an ecommerce platform owned by Alibaba (currently the world’s largest retailer).

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Responsible Jewellery Council expands into the silver supply chain

10 HOURS AGO
Responsible Jewellery Council expands into the silver supply chain

(LONDON, UK) - The Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) has announced the expansion of its material scope to include silver. As the leading standards setting and certification organization for the fine jewelry and watch supply chain, this expansion adds another key sector to the RJC’s remit, helping t...

Readmore

Jewelry writer Diana Jarrett nabs top notch kudos

10 HOURS AGO
Jewelry writer Diana Jarrett nabs top notch kudos

Popular gemologist-journalist earns Top Ten spot in 2017 national competition

(NEW YORK) - American Federation of Mineralogical Societies (AFMS) has announced the results of their annual Bulletin Editors Contest. Prolific journalist Diana Jarrett ranked in the Top Ten leaderboard among a hoard of Nort...

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GN Diamond unveils Diamond Hunt

7 DAYS AGO
GN Diamond unveils Diamond Hunt

Free in-store tool designed to help retailers sell more diamonds

Qualifying a customer’s budget is a common hurdle faced by jewelers and their sales associates on a daily basis. GN Diamond listens to the common pain points experienced by jewelers and has responded by now offering retailers the abilit...

Readmore

Brad Huisken introduces retail sales training app

12 DAYS AGO

(DENVER) – As retailers face more pressure from online competition, it’s important for brick-and-mortar stores to make the most of every sales opportunity they have. Brad Huisken’s IAS Training provides sales associates and managers with the tools to build customer relationships and increase sales, a...

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Furry friends on the job: Yoooo, Adrian! The greeter at The Diamondaire

10 HOURS AGO
Furry friends on the job: Yoooo, Adrian! The greeter at The Diamondaire

Yoooo, Adrian! This is Adrian, the greeter at The Diamondaire in Saint Charles, Illinois. Adrian is a rescue pup from the Animal Welfare League in Chicago Heights. Lauren & Billy Metzer took her in about a year and a half ago and she went right to work greeting customers, protecting the store an...

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Furry friends on the job: Otto from Kester Jewelry store

7 DAYS AGO
Furry friends on the job: Otto from Kester Jewelry store

Otto the laser welding cat is a 4 year old rescue kitty. The second feline featured in our Furry Friends, Otto is the 4th kitty in 45 years to grace the Kester Jewelry store in Craig, Colorado, where he works side-by-side with owner Richard Tyser. 

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The Marketing Minute: Trend Spotting

1 MONTHS AGO

Marketing specialist George Prout produces a weekly marketing advice video for retail jewelers, The Monday Morning Marketing Minute. He’s generously agreed to let us share them with our eWeekly readers.

 

Click here  to see more of George Prout’s The Marketing Minute

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Marketing Minute: Pricing Strategy

2 MONTHS AGO

Marketing specialist George Prout produces a weekly marketing advice video for retail jewelers, The Monday Morning Marketing Minute. He’s generously agreed to let us share them with our eWeekly readers.

 

Click here  to see more of George Prout’s The Marketing Minute

 

 

 

 

 

Readmore

The Retailer’s Perspective: Location, Location, Location

About 3 years ago I made the biggest decision of my professional life and decided to shut down my retail store - the retail store that I planned on owning for the next 30 years. It had been in that location since 1947 and I was hoping to make it last till 2047. Then the unthinkable happened. It failed. S.L.O.W.L.Y!

There was no warning. No precipitating factor like the factory next door shutting down and laying off my entire customer base. I wasn't doing anything wrong. If anything, I was doing everything right, just like I'd been doing since I opened my first jewelry company in 1983.

I got up every morning and went to work and turned on my OPEN sign and people came in and did business with me. Until my location died.

It was a painful and expensive time (of course that pales in comparison to the last four months of 2008) to go through. Now I've just experienced my second Christmas season in my new location and my 31st as a jeweler. And, yes it was slow, but it wasn't dead. If I'd stayed in my old location the last year and a half, I'm certain I would be bankrupt by now. And I think I've learned some valuable lessons the last couple of years I'd like to share with you.

Moving your business is a lot like moving from one neighborhood to another. Yes, you'll miss your old routine. You'll miss your old friends. You'll miss your house. But most people don't move from their house to one in a really bad part of town that's crime ridden and in decay. Most people move to a better neighborhood with more to offer than their last.

The same is true of moving your business. When I was looking for a new home for my store I wasn't looking in crappy, crime ridden areas. I was only looking in the best areas that offered the most long term growth. It took me almost a year to find my new location. It was kind of like looking for a new house and not liking anything you've seen. Then the perfect house comes on the market, and you know it's perfect because you've seen everything else. Then the move is not so scary. In fact it's exciting. Heck, the hardest part was the decision just to move.

Back when I was going through the process, I talked to lots of other jewelers who were in the same situation I was. Some moved. Some didn't. Those that did move have new stores, new customers, new sales, and a positive outlook. Those that didn't move.. well, their situation hasn't changed.

In my new store, I average about 5 people a day I've never seen in my life coming in for something. Most times it's just a $10 watch battery, but they are in my store.

The hardest part about building a new business is getting people to physically walk through your front door, but once they're in you can do your dog and pony show and make them a long term customer. We all know that word-of-mouth is the best advertising, and I'm averaging 5 new people a day. I'm thrilled. This would have never happened if I hadn't moved.

With the tough economic situation the country is facing, being in a bad location is only going to get worse. I'm glad I made the move because I've at least got a shot at surviving this mess, whereas in my previous location I had no chance.

Oh yeah, one other thing about moving. Just like how you'll miss your friends from your old neighborhood if you sell your house, the neighbors you really liked will still be your friends and you'll still see each other. And the neighbors you didn't like will be out of your life. When you move your business it's a lot of the same. The customers I really liked come see me at my new store. The customers that didn't really like me (or me them) tend to find someone else. There's a few I still can't shake though.

So what's next? Retail is next!

A couple of months ago I had the pleasure of interviewing Brad Lawrence. Brad owns Goldcasters Fine Jewelry in Bloomington, Indiana. If you've never been to Bloomington, it's an hour south of Indianapolis and an hour from any major interstate, and the home of the Indiana University Hoosiers.

A small quaint city in the middle of the country with one incredibly successful jewelry store. I was curious how someone could build a business of that magnitude in an out of the way place like Bloomington, so I went to check it out. Brad gave me a lesson or two on how to run a jewelry store.

First and foremost I learned that Brad was a retailer - not a jeweler. Yes, he's owned a jewelry store for over 25 years and has all the credentials and training available, but he doesn't see himself as a jeweler. He see's himself as a retailer.

Brad told me that most of his peers see themselves as jewelers. The difference is remarkable if you really think about it. Brad doesn't buy something because he likes it. He buys something be cause he thinks he can retail it, not just sell it.

How many of us have tons of dead stock in our cases and dead giftware that we thought was a sure fire seller? Most of us bought it because we liked it and never really thought about retailing it. Yeah, we gave it some thought, but did you really look at it like a retailer?

Ask yourself; Could you pull all of the cases out of your store and fill it with clothes and be successful? Brad Lawrence could. It's not the product you are selling that's important, it's your ability to retail that product.

Everyone reading this just happens to sell jewelry. So tell me, are you a retailer or a jeweler? For the last 30+ years I've answered that question "I'm a jeweler." In 2009 I'm going to become a retailer and damnit, I'm gonna buy a new private jet too - just like Brad!

Brad also made a statement that's stuck in my head: "If you're selling diamonds, you're doing okay in this business. If you're not selling diamonds, you're probably in trouble." That's pretty profound if you really analyze it.

Back in the day before Blue Nile and the Internet. I sold an average of 15-20 big diamonds a year. Considering at the time I was a small retail custom and repair shop, I was selling a big diamond about every 2-3 weeks, so I always had a couple of big sales in the pipeline and made a great living.

I don't think I've sold 20 big diamonds in the last 5 years, so how is Brad doing it and I'm not. It's relatively simple to explain, but it's going to be harder to put my new plan in place, but I'm gonna do it.

When I go back and really analyze those previous diamond sales, I realized I was just lucky. I never had a plan. I had something better - a jewelry store. It was just by default that I ever sold a diamond in the first place. Just pure luck.
I think a lot of jewelry store owners out there fall into this same category. You had a jewelry store and that was the only place to buy a diamond. Where else was someone going to go other than another jewelry store?

It was easy pickins back then. If I missed a sale, I had a couple of others in the works, so no big deal. Now the options are unlimited with the Internet. So since I never really had a plan, I had no ‘Plan B' if something like the Internet happened.
What I'm coming to realize is that the Internet is no different than any other competitor if you're actually in the business of selling diamonds.

There were a lot of stores that got killed when the Internet came along, and a few, like Goldcasters, that didn't. Simply because Brad was in the business of retailing diamonds, not selling diamonds - retailing them.

It took about a week for everything Brad and I talked about to soak into my thick skull, but once it got in there, it stuck. I encourage all the jewelry store owners out there to really think about what Brad has to say because it really works.
That being said, look out world, I'm about to become a retailer. God help the competition and the other airplanes up there!




Chuck is the owner of Anthony Jewelers in Nashville, TN. Chuck also owns CMK Co., a wholesale trade shop that specializes in custom jewelry and repair services to the jewelry industry nationwide. You can contact him at 615-354-6361, www.CMKcompany.com or send e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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