06292017Thu
Last updateWed, 28 Jun 2017 10pm
Retailer Roundtable: What jewelry trends are you seeing leading up to Vegas?

Retailer Roundtable: What jewelry trends are you seeing leading up to Vegas?

Q: What jewelry trends are you seeing leading up to...

Masters of Marketing - A century of sparkling insight - Part 2

Masters of Marketing - A century of sparkling insight - Part 2

Part II – Siegel Jewelers, Grand Rapids, MI

The tra...

GIA’s M2M app helps retailers tell a diamond’s story

GIA’s M2M app helps retailers tell a diamond’s story

As the creator of the 4Cs, GIA (Gemological Instit...

Ellis Jewelers Tim Hiatt credits retail success to his genes

Ellis Jewelers Tim Hiatt credits retail success to his genes

They say you can escape your past but not your gen...

Other News

Diamond Producers Association Announces 2017 Marketing Budget of $57M

Diamond Producers Association Announces 2017 Marketing Budget of $57M

(IDEX Online) – The Diamond Producers Association (DPA) announced at the JCK show in Las Vegas that its 2017 full-year marketing investment of $57 million has been approved by its board of directors. The figure more than quadruples last year's budget...

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Industry Events

ASA to offer Gem Identification, Testing and Insurance Report Writing courses at JTV

ASA to offer Gem Identification, Testing and Insurance Report Writing courses at JTV

(RESTON, Vir.) - The American Society of Appraisers (ASA) has announced the offering of a Gemological Boot Camp July 31 - August 3, 2017 and Appraising Gems and Jewelry for Insurance Coverage course August 4-7, 2017 at Jewelry Television in Knoxville,...

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On The Move

Voyager Brands hires Bill Peak as VP of Sales

Voyager Brands hires Bill Peak as VP of Sales

‘Shining star’ joins young, dynamic jewelry wholesaler

(AUSTIN, Tex.) - Voyager Brands is pleased to announce its hire of Bill Peak as Vice President of Sales.

Peak, who brings decades of experience in the industry, served as National Sales Manager at L...

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What's New

Rembrandt Charms introduces Bridal Party Program

Rembrandt Charms introduces Bridal Party Program

(WILLIAMSVILLE, N.Y.) - Rembrandt Charms Bridal Party Expansion Program creates an omni-channel experience for the bridal shopper, and cultivates new and repeat business for the retail jeweler. The Program is a low-cost investment of $170 and can gene...

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Featured Articles

Masters of Marketing - A century of sparkling insight (Part 1)

Masters of Marketing - A century of sparkling insight (Part 1)

Schnack’s Fine Jewelry, Alexandria, LA     

There is rarely a day that goes by when I am not reminded of the famous quote by Milan Kundera, “Business has only two functions - marketing and innovation.” For someone like me, whose life revolves around mar...

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Latest News

Diamond Producers Association Announces 2017 Marketing Budget of $57M

9 HOURS AGO
Diamond Producers Association Announces 2017 Marketing Budget of $57M

(IDEX Online) – The Diamond Producers Association (DPA) announced at the JCK show in Las Vegas that its 2017 full-year marketing investment of $57 million has been approved by its board of directors. The figure more than quadruples last year's budget.

Readmore

Forbes opinion piece suggests ‘Fight For $15’ having negative impact

1 DAY AGO
Forbes opinion piece suggests ‘Fight For $15’ having negative impact

What a difference a week makes.

Last week, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray trumpeted a new report on his city’s minimum wage experiment, from a team of researchers sympathetic to the cause. The Mayor’s request of this report was unusual, given that the city had already funded a separate University of Washing...

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ASA to offer Gem Identification, Testing and Insurance Report Writing courses at JTV

1 DAY AGO
ASA to offer Gem Identification, Testing and Insurance Report Writing courses at JTV

(RESTON, Vir.) - The American Society of Appraisers (ASA) has announced the offering of a Gemological Boot Camp July 31 - August 3, 2017 and Appraising Gems and Jewelry for Insurance Coverage course August 4-7, 2017 at Jewelry Television in Knoxville, TN.

Readmore

Charles Stanley and Yancy Weinrich honored at Jewelers for Children Facets of Hope

8 DAYS AGO
Charles Stanley and Yancy Weinrich honored at Jewelers for Children Facets of Hope

(NEW YORK) - Jewelers for Children (JFC) held the 19th edition of the Facets of Hope event on June 7, in Las Vegas at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. The charity announced that $2.2 million had been raised to support their charity partners in the year ahead bringing the cumulative total since 199...

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Voyager Brands hires Bill Peak as VP of Sales

1 DAY AGO
Voyager Brands hires Bill Peak as VP of Sales

‘Shining star’ joins young, dynamic jewelry wholesaler

(AUSTIN, Tex.) - Voyager Brands is pleased to announce its hire of Bill Peak as Vice President of Sales.

Peak, who brings decades of experience in the industry, served as National Sales Manager at Lakewood, N.J.-based Belair Time Corp. for the past...

Readmore

JA announces 2018 GEM Award for Lifetime Achievement recipient

15 DAYS AGO
JA announces 2018 GEM Award for Lifetime Achievement recipient

Sally Morrison of Gemfields to receive the prestigious award

(NEW YORK) - Jewelers of America (JA) and the GEM Awards Committee have announced that Sally Morrison, Director of Sales and Marketing, Americas, of Gemfields, will receive the GEM Award for Lifetime Achievement at the 16th annual GEM Awards...

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Rembrandt Charms introduces Bridal Party Program

15 DAYS AGO
Rembrandt Charms introduces Bridal Party Program

(WILLIAMSVILLE, N.Y.) - Rembrandt Charms Bridal Party Expansion Program creates an omni-channel experience for the bridal shopper, and cultivates new and repeat business for the retail jeweler. The Program is a low-cost investment of $170 and can generate over $1,500 in sales from one wedding party. ...

Readmore

Jayden Star celebrates 10-year anniversary with new product roll-out

28 DAYS AGO
Jayden Star celebrates 10-year anniversary with new product roll-out

(NEW YORK) - Celebrating with style, Jayden Star marks it’s 10-year anniversary with the biggest new product roll-out in company history during the JCK Las Vegas 2017 show. “With wholesale price points from $3 to $300, it’s hard to go wrong,” says Patrick Retzer, VP of Sales for Jayden Star. “All our...

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Furry Friends: Chase the cavachon

1 DAY AGO
Furry Friends: Chase the cavachon

Chase the cavachon goes to work every day at MLG Jewelry in Ohio - even when there’s an Ohio State game on TV.

Do you have a furry friend that helps out in your store? Tell us about it and send a picture to  bill@southernjewelrynews.com

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Furry Friends: Buffy the Shitzu

8 DAYS AGO
Furry Friends: Buffy the Shitzu

Buffy the shitzu recently celebrated her 10-year anniversary at Carl’s Fine Jewelry in Covington, LA. She’s quite stylish and the customers just love her.

Do you have a furry friend that helps out in your store? Tell us about it and send a picture to bill@southernjewelrynews.com.

 

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Let’s talk shops duex

Earlier this year I wrote an article about the relationship between retail stores and trade shops. I got quite a bit of feedback from both sides of the equation and decided that right before Christmas would be a good time to revisit the topic.

As a retail store owner with a bench jeweler on premises (me), I know how fortunate I am. But, as the owner of a trade shop as well, I find that jewelry stores fit into two categories: 1.) I’ve never had a bench jeweler on premises and have always used trade shops. 2.) I’ve had a bench jeweler on premises for 30 years but once she retired I haven’t been able to find a replacement so I am forced to use a trade shop.

Let me tell you, there is a huge difference between a trade shop and an ‘on-premises shop’ that only does their own store’s work. If you have a jeweler on your premises, you make the decisions about how much non-revenue producing work you want your jeweler to do on each job. I talk to a lot of bench jewelers that tell me their store’s policy is every ring is to be ‘refinished as new’ after every repair. I think that’s a great policy, but...if you put ‘refinish as new’ on an envelope and send it to a trade shop you’re gonna get charged for the original repair and around $18 for the additional finish out.

If a store has never had a jeweler, then they don’t expect the trade shop to spend an extra 30 minutes on something they’re not paying for. An $8 sizing is just that, an $8 sizing with a quick thorough cleaning and polishing. Not an $8 sizing (6 minutes tops) plus 30 free, un-billed minutes to just touch up some other stuff while it’s in the shop. Stores that have never had a jeweler know that if they want any additional work done, all they have to do is write it on the ticket and it’ll get done... just with an added charge $$$.

Trade shop jewelers also have the burden of remembering what level of service each individual store wants and expects. Case in point: Fifteen years ago I had a Bailey Banks and Biddle account (before the corporate price list and contract era) that was one of the highest grossing stores in the chain. The manager and I had an agreement that if something needed to be done to a ring they sold, just do it and charge her for it. Don’t call her and discuss it. At the very same time I had an account where the owner would ask me the cost of a repair. If I said $9.00, he’d tell me to only do $6 worth of work and stop. (Little did he know I would stop after $5 worth of work and bill him $6 anyway... Hah!) But all trade shops have accounts on both ends of the spectrum that we’re juggling daily.

Now store owners and managers fall into two mindsets when it comes to the shop: 1.) You think of your shop as an asset to your business. 2.) You think of your shop as a liability that sucks away at your life, your livelihood, your profit, and your soul.

I work with both types, but mostly I work with the stores that think of the shop as a profit center and an asset. Because these stores are charging their customers triple key for the work, they usually have a pretty good idea how much their bill is going to be when they send the work out, because they priced it to the customer based on their cost. But, the #2 group is alive and well out there. This group doesn’t add a mark-up to their trade bill. They do it at-cost as a customer service and usually guess at the price. This group is always shocked and surprised every time they get their bill. Anyone that uses a trade shop knows those bills can add up in a hurry. Okay, that’s the retail stores. How about the trade shop jewelers?

Trade shop jewelers fall into any combination of these categories (usually changing several times over the course of a day): Busy, harried, rushed, pissed, irritated, hung over, weird, cranky, finicky, anti-social, extremely talented, extreme self control, extreme lack of self control, and downright friggin’ awesome. And that’s all before lunch.

Store owners and managers on the other hand are: Confident, always in control, smart, goal oriented, social, engaging, driven, team players, counselors, confidants and well dressed.

So now I ask you... how in the hell did we ever meet in the first place? We have nothing in common. We don’t like the same people. We don’t hang out at the same places. Hell, we don’t even like each other. What’s the attraction? Oh yeah... we need each other.

I write this for one reason. As the ‘in-store jeweler’ becomes harder to find (Joe Cassarino quit hogging those 6 bench jewelers for yourself up there in Rochester, NY), more and more stores are being forced to use trade shops. And, more often than not, that trade shop will be in another state. I’ve never met the bulk of my trade accounts face to face, but we manage to get the work done to everyone’s satisfaction somehow, so it does work.

If you have a trade shop in your area that picks up and delivers to your store, I want you to think about this. The number one complaint I hear from bench jewelers that do trade work is the rising cost of fuel that they have to absorb driving all the way to your store to pick up a sterling silver bracelet that needs one charm soldered on. Now if it’s for a birthday present this weekend and you really do need it, that’s one thing. If the customer was just in the area and dropped it off and said no hurry, then call your jeweler and tell him to not come by today. It used to just be a hit on your billable hours driving all over town doing deliveries. Now with $4 a gallon gas, all the trade shops out there are taking a beating. Throw an extra $20 in the plate for gas once in a while.

With Christmas right around the corner, I’ve posted on my website my article from last Christmas about my shop policy for Christmas orders and repairs. Please take a look. You’d be doing your shop, your jeweler, and yourself a favor by reading it and thinking about implementing those policies in your store over the Christmas season. You can read it at www.CMKCompany.com. Good luck... sell a bunch... and try to have fun in these crazy times.

Oh yeah, I was just kidding. We really do like you retail folks. We just can’t let the other bench jewelers know cause they’ll make fun of us.

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.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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