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Megan Crabtree

A Buyer’s Guide for Bringing Aboard New Jewelry Lines

Follow this checklist before purchasing from a new company.

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IN THE EVER-EVOLVING world of jewelry retail, staying ahead of trends and offering fresh selections is necessary. But before you get swept away by the allure of a new brand, make certain you’re approaching onboarding with a strategic eye. Consider this your checklist for adding new vendors to your store.

1. PRESENTATION OPTIONS. How will this line be displayed? Does the vendor offer display options, or will you need to get creative? Visualize how the pieces will integrate with your existing collections.

2. VENDOR PORTALS. Vendor portals offer easy access to pricing, marketing assets, and product images. Does the vendor have an online portal with login capabilities for associates? Ideally, the portal should also allow for setting markups and displaying retail prices to customers.

3. BRIDAL CAPABILITIES. For engagement ring lines, clarify how to access style numbers and pricing for corresponding wedding bands. Is there a user-friendly portal system to find information immediately, or is contacting the vendor necessary?

4. KEY CONTACTS. Does the vendor provide key contacts within their office — both sales reps and in-office personnel? Having clear points of contact streamlines communication for questions and concerns.

5. WILLINGNESS TO TRAIN. Schedule training sessions once the new products arrive. Allow your team to “touch and feel” the pieces and gain in-depth product knowledge before showcasing them to customers. Consider on-site training, Zoom sessions, or creating reference documents for future hires.

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6. CO-OP OFFERS. Inquire about co-operative advertising dollars. Many brands offer financial assistance to help you market their line.

7. SHOW & TELL. If you participate in trade shows throughout the year, provide vendors with these dates in advance. This ensures they can either attend the show in person or ship their line to you for display during that time.

8. COLLECTION CLARITY. Ensure collection names are clearly listed on invoices. This allows for accurate data entry and facilitates future reporting by collection.

9. TEAM MOTIVATION. Does the vendor offer any sales team incentives? Maintain a logbook of vendor incentive programs for easy reference and team motivation.

10. LANDING PAGE LAUNCHPAD. Obtain contact information for the brand’s marketing team. If they offer landing pages to showcase your products, ensure these are set up before launch.

11. SIGNAGE. For in-store display purposes, determine how to acquire high-resolution marketing images that you can utilize for in-store signage. Does the vendor provide these, or will you need to print them yourself?

By implementing this comprehensive checklist, you can confidently bring new brands on board, making a smooth transition for your team and a seamless experience for your customers.

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