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Here Are 4 Characteristics of Successful Jewelers, According to Bill Warren

The jeweler and business coach notices what makes money for his clients.

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OVER THE LAST several years, I’ve seen a lot of my independent jewelry store owner friends leave the business. With this comes what I must admit is a bit of sadness for an industry that I love so much. A lot of these folks were very good jewelers, but they just couldn’t quite make the leap into today’s way of doing things, including new technologies, marketing, etc.

Being a jeweler’s business coach as well as a jewelry store owner myself, I tend to notice a lot of things from those who are successful as well as those who are not. What are those things you might say? I am so glad you asked…

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In increasing numbers, I’m noticing that today’s successful and relevant jeweler is adopting CAD/CAM technology. Simply put, the customers coming in your door are looking for a more customized experience and they don’t want something out of the case like their parents did. I’m not saying all are like this, but they are growing in increasing numbers!

Six out of ten engagement rings now sold in my own jewelry store are born in my store’s “Custom Design Center.” You do have one, don’t you? If not, visit Stuller Settings during one of their “Bridge Events” to get an idea, or simply visit a fellow jeweler that has a center like this.

Next on my hit list would be that jewelers need a strong repair department. This is something else that can’t be shopped online. I’m seeing that good quality jewelry repair work is increasingly in demand. Pay close attention to how you’re pricing it as well! David Geller’s book is right on the money … you are using it, aren’t you?

If you don’t already own a computerized engraver of the rotary or laser variety, I’d rush out and get one today! Why? These mechanical wonders open up a whole new market for jewelers in doing pet paw jewelry, fingerprints, baby handprints or engraving a loved one’s handwriting on a jewelry memento. Might I also add that because of the “very custom nature” of this, you may price accordingly.

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These are just a few of the things I see successful jewelers doing. The main thing is, are you willing to adapt and think differently, or will you go the way of the dinosaur like so many of our other jeweler friends have? The choice is absolutely yours!

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Hosting a going-out-of-business sale when the coronavirus pandemic hit wasn’t a part of Bob Smith’s game plan for his retirement. Smith, the owner of E.M. Smith Jewelers in Chillicothe, Ohio, says the governor closed the state mid-way through. But Smith chose Wilkerson, and Wilkerson handled it like a champ, says Smith. And when it was time for the state to reopen, the sale continued like nothing had ever happened. “I’d recommend Wilkerson,” he says. “They do business the way we do business.”

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