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Big Survey

2021 Big Survey: Pandemic Made Most Jewelers ‘Stronger’

Nearly 60 percent of jewelers said that the pandemic made them “stronger,” according to the INSTORE 2021 Big Survey.

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Bigger (it was an opportunity to expand)
8%
Stronger/more resilient (more efficient, less indebted, etc.)
59%
Weaker
3%
Just different. We reinvented ourselves.
12%
Just the same. Nothing changed really.
18%

MOST JEWELERS SAID that over the past year of lockdowns and stay-at-home retail sentiment their businesses had become “more resilient,” “more efficient” and “less indebted etc,” although around 29 percent conceded that government relief programs were “the main thing” that helped them get through the pandemic.Support from the local community (18.95%) figured high amongst jewelers as the main source of support over the past year, as did cost cutting (10.08%) and personal savings (8.27%).Echoing many respondents, one jeweler said, “We were able to do more with less time … [which] made us stronger.” Another said the key to getting ahead was to “work smarter not harder … [and be] open to new ways of doing things.”Many respondents said that shortening hours or even restricting business to appointments had made their businesses leaner.“I cut down my hours to two days a week—Mondays 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Fridays 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. – which allows flexibility for buying and appointments,” said one jeweler, who added: “I’m able to receive repairs on Monday and pick-ups on Friday.”Other Big Survey respondents said that reduced instore hours equaled better quality living—without any downside to business.“We began delivering in town to customers who could not make it in during our modified store hours,” said one respondent. “We were in store less, with our families more, and doing more business.”

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This Third-Generation Jeweler Was Ready for Retirement. He Called Wilkerson

Retirement is never easy, especially when it means the end to a business that was founded in 1884. But for Laura and Sam Sipe, it was time to put their own needs first. They decided to close J.C. Sipe Jewelers, one of Indianapolis’ most trusted names in fine jewelry, and call Wilkerson. “Laura and I decided the conditions were right,” says Sam. Wilkerson handled every detail in their going-out-of-business sale, from marketing to manning the sales floor. “The main goal was to sell our existing inventory that’s all paid for and turn that into cash for our retirement,” says Sam. “It’s been very, very productive.” Would they recommend Wilkerson to other jewelers who want to enjoy their golden years? Absolutely! “Call Wilkerson,” says Laura. “They can help you achieve your goals so you’ll be able to move into retirement comfortably.”

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