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Half of Millennial, Gen Z Consumers to Shop for Fine Jewelry This Holiday Season, PGI Study Suggests

It also advises retailers to keep their doors open to serve Millenials and Gen Z customers who are ready to spend in-store.

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About half of all millennials and Gen Z consumers are likely to shop for fine jewelry this holiday season, a new study from Platinum Guild International suggests. That’s a significantly higher percentage than that found among older generations.

Likelihood of Shopping for Fine Jewelry During 2020 Holiday Season

Intent is significantly stronger among Gen-Z and millennials than among the older generations.
PGI survey graph

Letters indicate a significantly higher % compared to corresponding % for associated generation. Capital letters indicate a significant difference at the 95% confidence level, lowercase letters indicate a significant difference at 90% confidence level.

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When specifically asked about the effects of the pandemic, only a small percentage of respondents cited concern over COVID-19 when planning their holiday shopping. Sixty-four percent of respondents felt “completely” or “mostly” comfortable to shop in-store.

Comfort Level Shopping In-Person for Fine Jewelry During 2020 Holiday Season

PGI chart
Letters indicate a significantly higher % compared to corresponding % for associated generation. Capital letters indicate a significant difference at the 95% confidence level, lowercase letters indicate a significant difference at 90% confidence level.

Across all age groups, 87% of respondents planned to shop in-store for jewelry, with the majority of shoppers looking to support local and independent retailers. In addition to their in-store shopping, 70% of respondents said they would also be shopping online, with a third selecting national chains’ websites as their go-to.

Fine Jewelry Retailers: Plan to Shop During 2020 Holiday Season

Those open to shopping for fine jewelry during the holiday season are likely to shop in a physical jewelry store. However, online shopping is a strong option as well that jewelers should be ready to support.

PGI graph
Letters indicate a significantly higher % compared to corresponding % for associated generation. Capital letters indicate a significant difference at the 95% confidence level, lowercase letters indicate a significant difference at 90% confidence level.

When asked specifically what jewelers can do to make the in-store experience less stressful and shoppers more comfortable, there was a resounding call for both employees and customers to be required to wear masks at all times. Masks were followed by a limitation of the number of customers in-store at one time and the strict enforcing of social distancing measures. Providing hand sanitzer upon entry also scored high marks from consumers.

What can jewelers do to make in-store shoppers feel comfortable?

Younger shoppers would also appreciate awareness of disinfecting protocols, touch-free payment, and even virtual appointments.

Half of Millennial, Gen Z Consumers to Shop for Fine Jewelry This Holiday Season, PGI Study Suggests
Letters indicate a significantly higher % compared to corresponding % for associated generation.Capital letters indicate a significant difference at the 95% confidence level, lowercase letters indicate a significant difference at 90% confidence level.

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The research also reinforced the importance of retailers’ continued active communication with their consumers. Using e-blasts, social media channels and even direct mail, retailers should share key messaging that they are open, can offer a safe shopping environment or a seamless virtual experience, for those clients who opt to shop from home.

In September 2020, Platinum Guild International USA commissioned 360 Market Reach to conduct a jewelry buying study. Within the study, researchers specifically looked at the future intent of consumers for the upcoming holiday shopping season and the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The focus group comprised 1,000 U.S. consumers age 18 to 64 who have or would be open to acquiring fine jewelry, defined as jewelry costing at least $1,000 made with precious metal.

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Wilkerson Testimonials

If It’s Time to Consolidate, It’s Time to Call Wilkerson

When Tom Moses decided to close one of the two Moses Jewelers stores in western Pennsylvania, it was time to call in the experts. After reviewing two candidates, Moses, a co-owner of the 72 year-old business, decided to go with Wilkerson. The sale went better than expected. Concerned about running it during the pandemic, Moses says it might have helped the sale. “People wanted to get out, so there was pent-up demand,” he says. “Folks were not traveling so there was disposable income, and we don’t recall a single client commenting to us, feeling uncomfortable. It was busy in here!” And perhaps most importantly, Wilkerson was easy to deal with, he says, and Susan, their personal Wilkerson consultant, was knowledgeable, organized and “really good.” Now, the company can focus on their remaining location — without the hassle of carrying over merchandise that either wouldn’t fit or hadn’t sold. “The decision to hire Wilkerson was a good one,” says Moses.

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