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Online Jewelry Sales Grew 45% During Holiday Season, According to Study

But overall jewelry sales were down 4%.

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PURCHASE, NY — Jewelry e-commerce sales were up 44.6 percent during the expanded holiday season, running from Oct. 11 through Dec. 24, according to Mastercard SpendingPulse.

Overall jewelry sales were down 4.3 percent compared with the same period in 2019.

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Overall holiday retail sales excluding automotive and gasoline increased 3 percent. Online sales grew 49%, the preliminary insights show. Mastercard SpendingPulse measures overall retail spending trends across all payment types, including cash and check.

“American consumers turned the holiday season on its head, redefining ‘home for the holidays’ in a uniquely 2020 way. They shopped from home for the home, leading to record e-commerce growth,” said Steve Sadove, senior advisor for Mastercard and former CEO and chairman of Saks Inc. “And, consumers shopped earlier than ever before. Across our expanded 75-day holiday shopping season, sales were up 3.0%, a testament to the holiday season and strength of retailers and consumers alike.”

Key findings from Mastercard SpendingPulse underscore the shift to online spending, with e-commerce accounting for 19.7 percent of overall retail sales – up from approximately 13.4 percent in 2019. In addition, consumers continue to spend more time – and money – on their homes.

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  • Home furniture and furnishings experienced the strongest growth of any sector compared to 2019, up 16.2 percent, and it grew 31 percent online specifically. In addition, home improvement was up 14.1 percent, with e-commerce sales up 79.7 percent.
  • Meanwhile, apparel experienced a decline of 19.1 percent year over year, while electronics and appliances were up 6.0 percent overall.
  • Department stores saw overall sales decline of 10.2 percent and online sales growth of 3.3 percent, reinforcing the importance of omnichannel offerings. Buy online, pick up in store as well as technologies like contactless were key for retailers this season.

This season, U.S. consumers shopped far earlier than in years past, as retailers offered special promotions early and often. In addition, though Black Friday was down (-16.1 percent), Thanksgiving weekend through Cyber Monday remained a key time for shoppers, with Black Friday being the top spending day of the 2020 holiday season.

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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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