We’re done collecting and tabulating, slicing and dicing, cross-checking and filtering — our latest Big Survey edition is done and dusted and currently en route to the printers. Within a few weeks you should see the results of our analysis and our readers’ generous contributions of their time, data and thoughts.

With just on 700 responses from store owners and managers, the 2016 Big Survey is once again the biggest such exercise undertaken in the industry this year. And once again there was no shortage of surprises. In the coming weeks we’ll give you a sneak peek at some of the results with a series of blogs published here on instoremag.com.

Among the highlights:

A new No. 1 for best-performing jewelry brand (yes, that Danish upstart has been toppled).
It will be a landslide on Nov. 8 if the rest of America votes like jewelers.
Stores are getting smaller even as jewelers try to offer more services.
Jewelers are a sober lot. OK, you may have known that; but what’s interesting is which jewelers drink the most.
Despite all the turmoil that has buffeted the industry over the last decade, a large portion of jewelry businesses (almost 50 percent) have enjoyed solid earnings growth. Find out which jewelers in which segments are doing best.
What’s the best time post on Facebook, and the best day to send an email? Our jewelers tell. Which sometimes reflects conventional wisdom and sometimes does not.
Finally, in a world where the average 29-year-old American has already had seven jobs, how do jewelers keep their staff for so long? By not hiring young people, of course!

In all, we asked 75 questions that garnered responses from simple multiple choice answers (Yes, I’m a woman) to hilarious tales of what jewelers had caught employees doing in the backroom to touching laments about the sacrifices people had made to pursue their business dreams. By the end of the exercise this year we really had only one question left – why will no jeweler in North Dakota answer our Big Survey?

Thanks to the jewelers in every other state of the Union, several territories and from Canada who made this year’s survey such a success, We hope you enjoy the teasers over the next few weeks and also the printed version when it lands in your mailbox in the first week of November. It contains the combined wisdom and experiences of 700 jewelers. Try to spend some quality time with it.

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“Halfway Through the Sale, We Already Did a Year’s Worth of Volume”

Torin Bales says he was “blown away” by Wilkerson’s results after the company ran his retirement sale. “When you hire a consultant, you have to let them take control,” says the Texas retailer. After all, if you’re like most jewelers, you only retire once. Get the maximum return on your life’s investment. Turn to Wilkerson & Associates and let your new life begin!


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