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David Geller

5 Sales Contests Your Jewelry Sales Team Should Try

They don’t just increase sales. They can also improve selling behaviors.




5 Sales Contests Your Jewelry Sales Team Should Try

AMERICANS ARE FREAKS for competition. Games and contests are what we live for. Think about how we all get excited watching football, baseball, even bowling. Try bringing games and contests into your store — and you’ll see how much new excitement results. They’ll even breathe new life into your “old race horses.”

The purpose of games is not just to increase sales, but also to improve selling behaviors and sales statistics. Sometimes the only difference between a good sales person and a terrific one is their excitement level. That feeds over into the customer who gets excited about buying their new piece of jewelry from your store. Games offer instant gratification and create excitement in a way plain old commissions simply can’t. (A warning: don’t use any game more than once a week, and try to change games often. Overuse of any game gets boring.)


A Buck A Try On

If jewelry sat on the counter like scarves and shirts, I promise you sales would increase (along with theft). But they don’t: they’re locked in cases, and inaccessible to customers. Thus, it’s always a challenge to get goods out of the “vault” and onto your customers’ fingers, necks and arms.

You need someone who’s always on the floor for this one — it works best with a sales manager. Here’s the plan. Every time a sales person gets the customer to try on a piece of jewelry, the staff member gets $1. Not right then and there — give the cash at the end of the night. For each additional piece the customer tries on, the sales person gets another buck. It doesn’t matter if the customer buys these items. All they have to do is try it on.

Holding the ring and staring at it doesn’t count, the ring must go on her finger. Bingo — a buck! “Would you like to see a matching bracelet that would look great with that?” Yes? Bingo — another buck!

One store I worked with who tried this gave the dollar bills in a small “ceremony” while closing down the store. The result? Sales for the month went up 30%!



Balloon Pop

Set specific goals for a weekend or week. Remember: be specific. Don’t just tell your staff to “increase sales.” Instead, set goals like:

  • A. Sell a watch
  • B. Sell a red dot (old) item
  • C. Any repair over $50
  • D. Any sales over $1,000

Make a list of prizes that you’ll be giving away — money, dinner, a movie, a music CD, electronics device, or even a day off. Write each reward down on a piece of paper, and put the papers inside balloons. Blow up the balloons and tape them to a board. Then, when someone on your sales staff achieves one of the listed goals, let them throw a dart to pop a balloon and get the prize inside. Of course, if they don’t pop any balloons, they lose their turn. The fact that great selling can be undermined by bad aim makes “Balloon Pop” a more democratic game, and a fun, exciting one for the whole staff.


Jewelry Store Poker

“Get rid of old merchandise” is my mantra. Make it yours as well. Buy a deck of cards. Then, write down a list of aged items you want to move. Include a short description and SKU number and include merchandise at various price ranges. Cut up the paper and tape or glue one item onto the middle of a playing card. Place the playing cards face down on a table and let each staff member choose a set number of cards.

As each sales person sells their items they turn in their cards and they are tacked to a board with their name on the card. You can have two prizes for this contest. You can have a grand prize that goes to the first person to turn in all of their cards. Then have smaller prizes for anybody who turns all of their cards in — ideally, this will be everyone on your staff. This contest can run over a week and you’ll find playing cards are easy to carry.


Pass The Fifty

In my former store, we played this game a lot (with $20 bills, but things cost more these days) and the results were always great. Almost every Saturday, we played this game and sometimes varied the amount. You tack a $50 bill to the bulletin board. First person to make a sale that day gets the $50 bill (includes repairs!). The next person who makes a bigger sale takes the $50 from the previous person and holds onto it. The person with the biggest sale at the end of the day gets to keep the $50! This creates a lot of excitement.

On some occasions, you can up the ante by making it two $50 bills stapled together. Or vary the game, by substituting the money with a gift certificate from Outback Steakhouse or another local restaurant.



Bag of Gooodies

Make a list of sales goals for your staff. These can vary widely. You can have items such as:

  • A. Sell an item over $1,000
  • B. Sell an aged item
  • C. Sell an add-on
  • D. Sell a custom design
  • E. Sell to a customer who you called to come into the store
  • F. Send out 25 hand-written thank-you notes in a day.

Go out and buy 20-40 items for this contest. Have a wide range of rewards — a good mix would be lottery tickets, candy bars, small toiletry items, gift certificates, CD’s, iPod Shuffles, cameras, dinners, etc. Gift wrap them in boxes and put all items in a big trash bag.

As each sales person achieves a goal, hold the bag open and let them pull out a prize. (Or number each box and let your salespeople draw a number.) Each time a salesperson achieves one of your goals, they can draw a new gift.

This game can easily be structured to be team-oriented. Divide the staff into teams and each time a team achieves a goal, a member of the team pulls a prize from the bag and everyone on the team gets that same prize. Or have a team outing as a prize. Or have each member grab a prize.

These are just a few ways you can take advantage of American’s lust for competition to boost your store’s sales. So … are you game?



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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