Jewelry retailing suffered during the recession as consumers cut spending on nonessential items. Declining sales led to multiple store closings and the liquidation of well-known retailers such as Fortunoff and Finlay Enterprises. The surviving retailers will be looking for ways to differentiate themselves in 2010 and beyond. Jewelers’ Circular Keystone online compiled a list of expected industry trends in 2010 as jewelers seek new paths to profitability. Here are a few items that will affect marketing strategies:
Custom Work – Jewelers say they are appealing to both the luxury and the youth market by offering custom pieces.
Resale Market for Gems and Metals – More consumers are selling heirloom jewelry for cash so jewelers are able to obtain inventory at a discounted price and may be able to resell diamonds and other gems in new pieces.
Gold as an Investment – Some consumers are interested in purchasing gold jewelry which is both appealing and serves as an investment. The average price range for this group is from $500 to $2,000.
Social Media – More jewelers will be using online and social media. This includes fine jewelers who want to reach younger consumers.
In 2010, look for more jewelers to promote custom items, especially those fashioned from resale gems, and expect them to follow other marketers to the online arena with promotional and information campaigns.[Sources: Zimmerman, Ann, Jeweler Zale Curbs New Orders, Wall Street Journal, 12.18.09; The JCK 2010 It List, 1.1.2010]