Last updateTue, 12 Nov 2019 10pm

The Retailer’s Perspective: I don’t believe you

You know, the longer you work with the public, the longer your list of ‘I don’t believe you’ phrases becomes. Sure, some people actually come through for you, but it’s rare. Below I’ve compiled some of the ones that make me roll my eyes the most.

I don’t care what it costs

Just between you and me, these are the people that care the most about what something costs. Any time I hear that, I throw out a figure about 10x the regular cost to just get their attention. Although there was this one time I had someone actually agree to that price. Then I woke up from the dream. For some reason though, they always seem to care what it costs when you hand them the bill for their finished repair. And you wanna know something? They completely forget all about the conversation telling you ‘they didn’t care what it cost, just fix it and hand me the bill!’ Go figure.

I’m in a hurry for this

Translation: I’m not going to pick this up for a year. But, feel free to go ahead and order and pay for all of the expensive diamonds and gemstones for their new ring. Then, feel free to go ahead and put them ahead of all your other customers to accommodate their request. And for heaven’s sake, please take time out of your life to call them once or twice a week for the next 54 weeks to try and get me to come in and pick it up and pay for it.

And, when they finally do come in, they always swear that they already paid for it. Hell, if it was paid for in advance, they’ll be lucky if I even call once to tell them it’s ready. Trust me, if I’ve called you 107 times, it’s not because I want you to have this beautiful piece of jewelry we made last year. It’s because I want to get paid!

Take your time; I’m not in a hurry

Hah! Nothing could ever be further from the truth. These are the people that will call you, checking on the progress, the same day they dropped it off when you told them it would take two weeks. Then, of course, they’ll drop by 6-7 times over the next 6-7 days, ‘just checking to see if it’s ready.’ Then they’ll say something like, “Well, just call me when it comes in.” Then I’ll say something like, “See you later this afternoon, and tomorrow, and the day after that.”

It just doesn’t matter how many times I say, “I promise you Fred, I will call you within 15 seconds of having it back in my hands. Now get out of here and leave me alone!”

I don’t need nuttin written down

Yea, right. You mean you just don’t want to pay me for my professional opinion. I usually hear this one after someone (that I’ve never seen before) has already spent their money with someone else. And now they are having buyer’s remorse and looking for ammunition to get their money back. They don’t trust whoever they already gave their money to and now want a reputable jeweler to tell them what they want to hear. Oh, Hell No!

I try hard to avoid getting involved in these types of situations. There is no way for you to win. In our industry, there is no standardized retail pricing. If someone buys ten 1.02 ct, VS2, G-color, 6-prong diamond engagement rings, from ten different retailers, they will pay ten different prices.

The minute you tell them they got taken to the cleaners, which is waaay different than what they were told by their salesperson, they suddenly want it in writing to try and get their money back. I don’t have a dog in that hunt and I’m not going to.

I don’t have a budget. If I like it I’ll buy it, I don’t care what it costs

“Then here, like this one,” I’ll say as I hand them something expensive out of the case that I’m tired of dragging in and out of the safe every day.

“And looky, it’s only $12,000. Will that be cash, check, or credit card?”

Suddenly, like an apparition, a budget appears out of thin air. And it’s $200 or less. “Oh, I’m sorry. I thought you were looking for something that SHE was going to like? You should try Walmart. They have a great selection in that price range.” It’s here that they always tell me how they’d never buy jewelry from Walmart because it’s just cheap junk. So I just bite my tongue and think to myself; “All jewelry that is $200 or less is pretty much the textbook definition of cheap junk.”

I don’t know what happened, I only wore it once

Oh come on, you do to know what happened to it. I guarantee you looked at your hand when it happened just to make sure you still had all your fingers when you slammed it in the car door. You’re only lying to me right now because you want me to fix it for free because I sized it 3 months ago. Because, surely that $45 sizing came with a free lifetime guarantee from me on some piece of junk you bought off of the internet. Probably for $200 or less!

It has to be worth more than that, my grandma only bought good stuff

Dude, I knew your grandma. She was a cheapskate. She was addicted to the Home Shopping Network. And what you’re showing me is the best of what she had… it only gets worse from here. Now hurry along to Goodwill and make sure and get a receipt for your taxes.

Chuck is the owner of Anthony Jewelers in Nashville, TN. Chuck also owns CMK Co., a wholesale trade shop that specializes in custom jewelry and repair services to the jewelry industry nationwide. If you would like to contact Chuck or need a speaker or instructor for your next conference/event he can be reached at 615-354-6361, www.CMKcompany.com or send e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..