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Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers

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Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers

Last weekend, I had the opportunity to travel to New Orleans to visit some of the top jewelry stores in the area. My first stop was to see the first jeweler I ever met: Robert Ramsey of Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers.

Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers
Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers

I was interviewing for a job with Williams Marketing back in 1998 (owned by Roy Williams, whose client list at that time numbered about 60-70 jewelry retailers), and I met Robert, who was visiting for his annual marketing strategy planning retreat. He struck me as a good-natured, easygoing guy who was also driven to take his store to the next level – and he was a lot “cooler” than my 24-year-old self ever imagined a jeweler would be. Today, Robert is still a cool dude, and he and his family and staff have turned that store into a bustling one-stop shop for diamonds.

The store sells nothing but diamond jewelry – no watches, no brands. When I visited on a Friday morning, the place was packed with customers. Ramsey’s is known for quality, primarily because the store is willing to stand behind its products. Customers receive a number of guarantees, including a grading guarantee, lifetime diamond protection, guaranteed trade-in value, a lifetime mounting warranty, free appraisal, satisfaction guarantee, and a best price guarantee. I asked Robert about the best price guarantee and where it came from. He said that people in the mid-90’s were shopping by weight and not understanding why the same weight diamond might cost more at Ramsey’s than at a lower-end jeweler. So, in order to provide an entry point to discuss diamond quality, Ramsey’s developed the best price guarantee.

Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers

Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers

Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers
placard urging customers to check in on Facebook to take home a free gift

Another cool thing I noticed in the store was the placard urging customers to check in on Facebook to take home a free gift. This is a fabulous idea. Even a jar of jewelry cleaner is a nice freebie for customers who do nothing more than say they were shopping at Ramsey’s today. What a great idea for generating word of mouth!

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Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers
the store’s dog bride metal statue complete with bridal gown, veil and engagement ring on her left paw

Ramsey’s also had a beautiful metal dog statue in front of the store: a dog bride complete with bridal gown, veil and engagement ring on her left paw. Robert said that it was a public art project sponsored by the SPCA (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals). For $7,000, a business could design and keep the dog statue. The project raised over $180,000 for SPCA in New Orleans, and for Ramsey’s it was a fun project that several staff members pitched in on to create the design (including Robert’s sister Lori, pictured with Robert and the statue, dubbed “Diamond Grrrrrl”).

Finally, Robert said something in regards to selling jewelry that stuck with me: “I’d rather not make the sale if the product isn’t something she’d be happy to take her current favorite piece off to wear.” For that reason, the store has very few returns.

In my next blog installment, I’ll write about a couple of other really interesting stores I had the pleasure to visit in New Orleans.



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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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Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers

Published

on

Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers

Last weekend, I had the opportunity to travel to New Orleans to visit some of the top jewelry stores in the area. My first stop was to see the first jeweler I ever met: Robert Ramsey of Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers.

Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers
Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers

I was interviewing for a job with Williams Marketing back in 1998 (owned by Roy Williams, whose client list at that time numbered about 60-70 jewelry retailers), and I met Robert, who was visiting for his annual marketing strategy planning retreat. He struck me as a good-natured, easygoing guy who was also driven to take his store to the next level – and he was a lot “cooler” than my 24-year-old self ever imagined a jeweler would be. Today, Robert is still a cool dude, and he and his family and staff have turned that store into a bustling one-stop shop for diamonds.

The store sells nothing but diamond jewelry – no watches, no brands. When I visited on a Friday morning, the place was packed with customers. Ramsey’s is known for quality, primarily because the store is willing to stand behind its products. Customers receive a number of guarantees, including a grading guarantee, lifetime diamond protection, guaranteed trade-in value, a lifetime mounting warranty, free appraisal, satisfaction guarantee, and a best price guarantee. I asked Robert about the best price guarantee and where it came from. He said that people in the mid-90’s were shopping by weight and not understanding why the same weight diamond might cost more at Ramsey’s than at a lower-end jeweler. So, in order to provide an entry point to discuss diamond quality, Ramsey’s developed the best price guarantee.

Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers

Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers

Advertisement
Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers
placard urging customers to check in on Facebook to take home a free gift

Another cool thing I noticed in the store was the placard urging customers to check in on Facebook to take home a free gift. This is a fabulous idea. Even a jar of jewelry cleaner is a nice freebie for customers who do nothing more than say they were shopping at Ramsey’s today. What a great idea for generating word of mouth!

Road Trip Part 1: Ramsey’s Diamond Jewelers
the store’s dog bride metal statue complete with bridal gown, veil and engagement ring on her left paw

Ramsey’s also had a beautiful metal dog statue in front of the store: a dog bride complete with bridal gown, veil and engagement ring on her left paw. Robert said that it was a public art project sponsored by the SPCA (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals). For $7,000, a business could design and keep the dog statue. The project raised over $180,000 for SPCA in New Orleans, and for Ramsey’s it was a fun project that several staff members pitched in on to create the design (including Robert’s sister Lori, pictured with Robert and the statue, dubbed “Diamond Grrrrrl”).

Finally, Robert said something in regards to selling jewelry that stuck with me: “I’d rather not make the sale if the product isn’t something she’d be happy to take her current favorite piece off to wear.” For that reason, the store has very few returns.

In my next blog installment, I’ll write about a couple of other really interesting stores I had the pleasure to visit in New Orleans.



/* * * CONFIGURATION VARIABLES: EDIT BEFORE PASTING INTO YOUR WEBPAGE * * */
var disqus_shortname = ‘instoremag’; // required: replace example with your forum shortname

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var dsq = document.createElement(‘script’); dsq.type = ‘text/javascript’; dsq.async = true;
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})();

Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Advertisement

SPONSORED VIDEO

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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