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4 Steps to Turn Web Browsers into Buyers

Here’s how to translate your in-store experience to remote shoppers.

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WHILE ONLINE SHOPPING hit record highs throughout 2020 and into 2021, some jewelers have struggled with some “technical difficulties” when it comes to translating their in-person relationships into the virtual world and making those online sales that they keep hearing about.

Executing a flawless online sales strategy isn’t as easy as maintaining a website, hopping on social media from time to time, and hoping those ready-to-buy leads find their way to you. But there is a simple four-step formula for converting online browsers into buyers that has helped my students and clients to hit record highs of their own.

1. Show up in your virtual showroom everywhere it exists. Remember that many of your clients (and potential clients) find your virtual showroom in many places, from your website to social media to email newsletters and more. Be consistent about updating each of these online assets and remember that your goal is always to start a conversation!
Think about new ways to connect with your audience, like using video to capture the sparkle of pieces that might otherwise go unnoticed in still photographs, or adding a chat widget to your website to make reaching out even easier.

2. Know that many buyers won’t click the “buy” button. Sure, your audience can purchase your jewelry with just a single click … but the truth is that many won’t want to. Shoppers miss the experience of walking into your showroom and taking in the warm conversation and ambience along with your dazzling pieces.
Most buyers want to be courted through social media messages, text, or calls — and you should be available to connect with them through all of these channels. A client of mine recently sold a $48,000 sapphire ring over a five-minute phone call, so never underestimate the power of picking up the phone to have an old-fashioned conversation.

3. Remember that your best clients are the ones you already have. If you don’t already have a list of your top EICs (Extremely Important Collectors), take some time to write down the 20 percent of clients who account for your most consistent sales — then make a commitment to connect with them. Compliment them on that new home improvement project they just posted on Instagram, congratulate them about the promotion they shared on LinkedIn, or wish them a happy birthday over on Facebook. Make it a habit of “running into them” online, and they’ll soon return the favor.

4. Throw a party and invite your audience to your showroom — virtually. Your clients have been missing out on the events that kept your connection lively and fun, and it’s your job to bring that back to them in a safe and comfortable way.
Host an online wine tasting or throw a tea party over Zoom and invite your audience to spend an evening with you and your latest work. Giving them the exclusive opportunity to be a part of your “first look” reveal and buy before anyone else is a great way to guarantee more guests will show up.

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At the end of the day, it’s all about meeting your clients and collectors where they’re at and providing the same quality of service they’ve come to love you for. Give these four simple steps a try, and you’ll have a much easier time translating that high level of care into the digital world.

Kathleen Cutler, profit expert for high-end jewelry brands, focuses on helping jewelers understand how to convince younger, affluent audiences to buy, combining modern tech with retro-style relationship building. Kathleen has a degree from GIA and has coached 100-plus jewelers. Reach her at [email protected]

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Retirement Made Easy with Wilkerson

The store was a landmark in Topeka, Kansas, but after 80 years in business, it was time for Briman’s Leading Jewelers to close up shop. Third generation jeweler and owner Rob Briman says the decision wasn’t easy, but the sale that followed was — all thanks to Wilkerson. Briman had decided a year prior to the summer 2020 sale that he wanted to retire. With a pandemic in full force, he had plenty of questions and concerns. “We had no real way to know if we were going to be successful or have a failure on our hands,” says Briman. “We didn’t know what to expect.” But with Wilkerson in charge, the experience was “fantastic” and now there’s plenty of time for relaxing and enjoying a more secure retirement. “I would recommend Wilkerson to any retailer considering a going-out-of-business sale,” says Briman. “They’ll help you reach your financial goal. Our experience was a tremendous success.”

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