in the human spirit is always itching for independence and this itch
translates to a constant flow of new entrepreneurs that so often
gravitate towards fashion jewelry. What is so irresistible about this
accessory? Beyond the high profit margins that wholesale fashion jewelry
can open for retailers lies an intrinsic beauty that creates truly
wearable art. Yes, wholesale fashion jewelry offers plenty of profit
potential that enables retailers to turn small investments into the
longest mark-up in the fashion industry, but the magic of fashion
jewelry’s beauty stops consumers in their tracks and this magnetic
attraction, more than anything else, brings the entrepreneur into retail
sales specializing in jewelry.
Many of these new fashion jewelry
businesses begin on the simplest level with retailers buying wholesale
fashion jewelry and presenting it to friends and co-workers. Easy sales
and new found profits ignite a fire to grow the business, but what step
comes next? As a twenty-five year veteran of the wholesale fashion
jewelry industry, I have seen business after business start in this way
and often grow to become the major supplier of fashion accessories in a
community. The learning curve never ends as fashion jewelry evolves as
well as retail tactics, but some things never change and these key
techniques will have positive impact on your fashion jewelry business.
first, how are you going to sell your treasure of wholesale fashion
jewelry? Outgoing personalities love the active sale. Visit businesses,
do parties, set up in flea markets or craft shows, and bubble over with
enthusiasm as you introduce stunning fashion jewelry to consumers. All
they need is a crowd and permission to set up. Bingos, festivals, school
picnics, car shows, sporting events-the list is endless. Overhead is
low and actually stops when not engaged in sales activities. But so does
sales, so many prefer brick and mortar businesses with a higher
overhead, but continuing business even when you’re not there.
quieter, methodical personality may not be up to this bubbling
enthusiasm and choose a passive sales mode. Successful businesses often
build without the entrepreneur ever engaged in active sales to the
consumer. They connect with beauty shops and other locations to provide
fashion jewelry on consignment with the owner profiting as well as the
entrepreneur. Methodical personalities think out the details like how to
handle shrinkage of missing items with no sales recorded. Increasing
price and lowering consignment fees compensates for losses when fashion
jewelry has open exposure that can result in more shrinkage. The flip
side is reduced sales in secure environments like showcases or behind
the counter, which reduce shrinkage, but unfortunately, also sales.
both personalities have a selling method they are comfortable with and
both can expand their business with online marketing by working on
websites while their sales support them as the websites grow, climbing
higher in the results of major search engines. But what about the 5
shortcuts to retail success? They boil down to pricing, selection,
presentation, knowledge, and benefits.
-First comes pricing the
wholesale fashion jewelry. New entrepreneurs often feel shock waves as
they see the wholesale cost compared to retail prices they paid as
consumers. The first temptation is undercut all the competition. Stop
there!-because fashion jewelry is cyclical and low prices generate low
profits that don’t carry retailers through the tough times. Do you want
to spend all your earnings on restocking wholesale fashion jewelry and
covering overhead? Of course not, you want to grow your business and
make a profit and pricing is important.
Retail uses a term called
keystone-a nice word for doubling the wholesale price. Make keystone the
minimum for mark-up in fashion jewelry and look for the items that give
you room for far longer mark-ups. The upside has no rules. Let your
intuition guide you because prices can always come down, but it is
difficult to go up.
-Next comes selection and this is a factor
that major retailers like fine department stores are always struggling
to get right. Stroll through one and you will see they have reduced
staff on the floor so selection often has to sell itself. The fine
department stores need “no miss” choices and have resources, forecasts,
statistics, and trained buyers to make these decisions. Small retailers
don’t need to be discouraged because this isn’t rocket science and you
are closer to the clientele in your location than any major retailer.
the perfect selection rests on the age and demographics of your main
customer base. Add this to the fashion trends of the season and you are
close to perfect. How do you keep up with all those rapid changing
fashion trends? Well rapid change is a myth. Trends change very
slowly-often over a decade. Yes, colors and subtle adjustments occur
every season, but today we are in the midst of classic trends that
started in the early 21st century and have a promising future. More on
this when we cover knowledge.
-Now for presentation-making the
fashion jewelry look special. Ever notice how necklaces clumped together
on a tee bar on top of a showcase seem to scream “I’m on sale” while
the stuff in the showcase whispers “I’m special”. That’s presentation
and how it has changed even for fine department stores.
in The End of Fashion details how department stores that were once “the
first visual contact with fashion” and “introduced merchandise concepts
to customers” changed in the late 20th century to a collection of
brands. Agins quotes one upscale shopper who “was appalled when she
discovered $19.99 Nine West shoes displayed right next to $350 Chanels”
in her favorite department store that was compromising its image of
elite fashion. Make an item look special and it takes on the perception
of higher value.
-Next comes knowledge that is worth more than
price. Don’t believe it? Think of items you bought because the sales
person impressed you with a deep understanding of the product. That was
worth more than price. I personally experienced this lesson when I did a
trade show with a colleague. I told my customers the fashion jewelry
was a real value at the price. His sales person painted a word picture
of the wholesale fashion jewelry with the season’s apparel and wrote
more orders without the customers even knowing the price.
is knowing the trends and knowing the item. Consumers trust a
well-informed source and when you know what is today’s style and why it
looks right on the customer, you remove the burden of choice from the
Knowledge today goes deeper because classic trends in
fashion jewelry bring gemstone components, shell, Murano style glass,
Millefiore, and more to jewelry designs. A story is worth volumes in
explaining glass jewelry and knowledge of gemstones that removes the
doubt about whether it is real. Don’t be overwhelmed about understanding
the trends and knowledge of today’s components because everything is
detailed in a report, Wholesale Fashion Jewelry-The Magic of Trends
(find a link to the report at the foot of this article).
there are benefits. Think of benefits as vision-what the customer
envisions. Anyone that buys fashion jewelry wants to make a positive
statement. They want a look that is flattering and appropriate. So like
the car commercial running on the radio, features describe the details
like length, color, texture, and shape while benefits say “matches
apparel while complementing your complexion”, “draws attention to your
slender neck”, or “creates a youthful look that is so you”. The old
adage of sell the sizzle, not the steak, gets to the point. Pick the
right item for the customer, be sincere, and sell the sizzle.
all this work in a slowing economy? Absolutely! In worrisome times
women appreciate an escape valve of some small new purchase. What
fulfills this better than fashion jewelry? Apply the five shortcuts and
lift your customers’ spirits with a feel-good experience.