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Big Survey

Jewelers Increasingly Less Likely to Stock Watches

More than 50 percent of jewelers continue to stock watches, but the trend is down amid surging Apple Watch sales and Rolex supply-chain shortages, according to the INSTORE 2021 Big Survey.

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Jewelers Increasingly Less Likely to Stock Watches

Products that jewelers responding to the Big Survey carry.

WHEN REMINDED THAT in 2019 Apple Watch sales surpassed those of all Swiss watch makers, 26 percent of respondents to the Big Survey said they thought that the Apple Watch was “killing traditional watch sales,” while 30 percent said that the Apple product was having a “moderate negative impact.”

Just 1 percent said that Smartwatches had become “a nice little earner.”

The number of jewelers stocking watches has dropped by some 10 percent over the past decade, the Big Survey has found.

The 2021 Big Survey was carried out between August and September, attracting more than 600 anonymous responses from owners of independent jewelry stores across the United States and Canada. The full results will be published in the upcoming November issue of INSTORE.

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Alex and Gladys Rysman are the third generation to run Romm Jewelers in Brockton, Mass. And after many decades of service to the industry and their community, it was time to close the store and take advantage of some downtime. With three grown children who each had their own careers outside of the industry, they decided to call Wilkerson. Then, the Rysmans did what every jeweler should do: They called other retailers and asked about their own Wilkerson experience. “They all told us what a great experience it was and that’s what made us go with Wilkerson.” says Gladys Rysman. The results? Alex Rysman says he was impressed. “We exceeded whatever I expected to do by a large margin.”

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