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Big Survey

And the Least Friendly State for Jewelers Is …

The jewelers in this region are among the most regulated — and the most prosperous.




And the Least Friendly State for Jewelers Is …

CALIFORNIA! PERHAPS NO surprise, the Golden State ranked lowest in the 2023 INSTORE Big Survey for its support for independent jewelry businesses, followed closely behind by its northern neighbor, Oregon.

At the other end of the scale, the friendliest, were what are often portrayed as those two states’ political polar opposites – Texas at No. 1 and Florida at No. 3 (South Carolina was rated the second-most friendly).

Please note that in the graphic, the figures refer to a “weighted average” out of 10, even though the rating scale was 1-5.

Interestingly, while jewelers in the West chaff against the high taxes, regulations and tough environmental restrictions for which their region is famous, they were also among the most prosperous – 20% reported making more than $250,000 a year, higher than anywhere else in the US, and almost double the level in the Southwest. And they were almost among the most bullish, with twice as many seeing a new economic boom just around the corner. (Although we should acknowledge this group represented a small minority – 8% of jewelers in the West vs 4% overall. Most jewelers see more uncertainty and volatility ahead).

The 2023 Big Survey was conducted via an anonymous online form from late August to early October, attracting more than 750 responses from American jewelry-store owners and managers. The full results will be published in the November edition of INSTORE.

Chris Burslem is Group Managing Editor at SmartWork Media.



When There’s No Succession Plan, Call Wilkerson

Bob Wesley, owner of Robert C. Wesley Jewelers in Scottsdale, Ariz., was a third-generation jeweler. When it was time to enjoy life on the other side of the counter, he weighed his options. His lease was nearing renewal time and with no succession plan, he decided it was time to call Wilkerson. There was plenty of inventory to sell and at first, says Wesley, he thought he might try to manage a sale himself. But he’s glad he didn’t. “There’s no way I could have done this as well as Wilkerson,” he says. Wilkerson took responsibility for the entire event, with every detail — from advertising to accounting — done, dusted and managed by the Wilkerson team. “It’s the complete package,” he says of the Wilkerson method of helping jewelers to easily go on to the next phase of their lives. “There’s no way any retailer can duplicate what they’ve done.”

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