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Commentary: The Business

Online Spaces Allow Independent Jewelers to Enter the Global Marketplace

Digital opportunities aren’t limited to driving store traffic.




THE PANDEMIC HAS brought struggles to the jewelry business. At the same time, changes in our industry and consumer behaviors are challenging the ways retailers do business. If you’re a main street jeweler, taking advantage of new digital opportunities is one way you can adapt and thrive.

Until recently, the digital tools available to independent jewelers were somewhat limited, but now, the landscape for jewelers is evolving, creating new ways to thrive in a changing marketplace. Here’s how.

Technology Levels the Playing Field. Digital innovations offer independent jewelers the opportunity to compete with big box retailers and other jewelry giants, not only in helping them reach customers online, but also in providing access to a global marketplace and real-time insights.

Currently, most main street jewelers are drawing upon a number of sources for industry information, news, market trends, the price of diamonds, and more. Until recently, jewelers had to rely on information and appraisal packages from local providers, point of sale systems to manage inventory, and information from a variety of outlets to help turn a profit. Now, jewelers can access that information from a single source, making it easier to compete with larger retailers when it comes to pricing, inventory and industry insights.

It Makes Building Your Inventory More Strategic. In the past, jewelers were often unable to invest in or support the technology required to enter the global marketplace. Now they can leverage global pricing and sourcing simply by going online and establishing connections. Some platforms offer built-in IDEX marketplace services in which suppliers can share inventory. Features like these allow jewelers to manage their inventory and secure new products at a fair price.

It Helps Bring Traffic to Your Store. Digital platforms also pave the way for further expansion into the local community by driving store traffic and providing tools to help jewelers serve those customers when they arrive. It can, for example, be offering an easier appraisal process, presenting real-time values or providing an added level of trust between the customer and jeweler.


The Future of the Main Street Jeweler. As the capabilities of digital platforms expand, we can expect to see more and more independent jewelers adopting these technologies to strategically manage inventories and reach customers in new ways. In a time of change in many industries, going digital is one way you can set up your business for success.

Adam Gerety is vice president for platform operations at Jewelers Mutual Group.



Wilkerson Testimonials | Sollberger’s

Going Out of Business Is an Emotional Journey. Wilkerson Is There to Make It Easier.

Jaki Cowan, the owner of Sollberger’s in Ridgeland, MS, decided the time was right to close up shop. The experience, she says, was like going into the great unknown. There were so many questions about the way to handle the store’s going-out-of-business sale. Luckily for Cowan, Wilkerson made the transition easier and managed everything, from marketing to markdowns.

“They think of everything that you don’t have the time to think of,” she says of the Wilkerson team that was assigned to manage the sale. And it was a total success, with financial goals met by Christmas with another sale month left to go.

Wilkerson even had a plan to manage things while Covid-19 restrictions were still in place. This included limiting the number of shoppers, masking and taking temperatures upon entrance. “We did everything we could to make the staff and public feel as safe as possible.”

Does she recommend Wilkerson to other retailers thinking of retiring, liquidating or selling excess merchandise? Absolutely. “If you are considering going out of business, it’s obviously an emotional journey. But truly rest assured that you’re in good hands with Wilkerson.”

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