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Online and Social Media Continue to Capture Consumer Confidence, According to Plumb Club Study

Online and Social Media Continue to Capture Consumer Confidence, According to Plumb Club Study

Part 2: New research reveals online fact-finding and purchasing are strong.

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ONLY A FEW years ago, many retailers did not see the immense value in websites and social media. The historical thinking was that jewelry research and purchasing needed to be a tactical and in-person experience. However, both the physical and online marketplaces have changed dramatically over the past few years. Research illustrates that consumers have a growing reliance on both online and social media when it comes to researching jewelry and buying it.

This can be seen in a new and exciting study by The Plumb Club, a coalition of over 50 best-in-class suppliers to the jewelry and watch industry, celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. Continuing its mission of educating and innovating in the jewelry category, the Plumb Club commissioned this research, which includes a survey of over 2,000 consumers. It is being shared to help retailers understand consumer shifts and trends and provide insights to support better business.

The Plumb Club Industry and Market Insights 2023 reveals that although 48% of consumers still research potential purchases in store with a jewelry expert, 70% say they use internet searches for the research. 85% also feel there is enough reliable information available to educate themselves about a jewelry purchase.

Online and Social Media Continue to Capture Consumer Confidence, According to Plumb Club Study

While some could argue that consumer research online is vastly different from actual purchase online, it is clear that online purchases continue to rise. The Plumb Club survey shows that 62% of consumers have purchased jewelry online and 46% have purchased watches online. The top 3 reasons noted for shopping online versus in the store are “convenience” (64%), “more product options” (43%) and the ease of “price comparison” (40%).

Online and Social Media Continue to Capture Consumer Confidence, According to Plumb Club Study

Consumers are fairly evenly split on their preference of channel when buying or browsing; direct from brand jewelry and watch websites (31%), online marketplaces (30%), and jeweler websites (27%). Of those consumers who have shopped on a site with a try-on option, nine out of 10 find the feature helpful. When purchasing jewelry online, the average spend is $1,355.

Online and Social Media Continue to Capture Consumer Confidence, According to Plumb Club Study

Social media, too, has gained momentum when it comes to the jewelry category. 83% of respondents say they are active on social media, and 40% have made purchases from social media platforms. What may come as a surprise is that Facebook and Instagram far outweigh the other platforms when it comes to activity. They are also both the preferred platforms for consumers making a purchase with Facebook at 48% and Instagram at 42%. 80% of the consumers polled revealed that their social media purchase was related to an ad they had seen on these platforms.

Online and Social Media Continue to Capture Consumer Confidence, According to Plumb Club Study

Online and Social Media Continue to Capture Consumer Confidence, According to Plumb Club Study

Advancements in tech, and an evolving consumer, are creating new opportunities for jewelers to capture digital sales, with a McKinsey study predicting that 18% of all sales will be generated through online channels by 2025. Additionally, according to Insider Intelligence US, mobile commerce will nearly double its share of total retail sales by the same date. Social commerce is expected to be a major contributor to sales growth, especially with Millennials and Gen Z holding massive spending power.

The insights shared here are part of a multi-faceted research study initiated by The Plumb Club with the assistance of Paola Deluca, The Futurist, and Qualtrics, a world-renowned survey and analytics firm. The study was conducted with a sampling of over 2,000 men and women from the ages of 25 – 60 with a balanced demographic and psychographic mix across the US with the goal of understanding how individuals engage with jewelry. Respondents had all attended some college or higher and had a combined household income of at least $75K/year. Additional information from this expansive research will be shared over the next several weeks. Any retailer wishing for more information on The Plumb Club Industry and Market Insights 2023, should contact their Plumb Club Member vendors or visit a member during the JCK show at The Plumb Club Pavilion. A full listing of Members can be found here.

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She Wanted to Spend More Time with Her Kids. She Called Wilkerson.

Your children are precious. More precious than gold? Absolutely! Just ask Lesley Ann Davis, owner of Lesley Ann Jewels, an independent jewelry store that — until the end of 2023 — had quite a following in Houston, Texas. To spend more time with her four sons, all in high school, she decided to close her store. Luckily, she was familiar with Wilkerson and called them as soon as she knew she wanted to move on to bigger, better and more family-focused things. Was she happy with her decision? Yes, she was. Says Davis, “Any owner looking to make that life change, looking to retire, looking to close, looking for a pause in their career, I would recommend Wilkerson. Hands down!”

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