We’ve all seen the statistics on the changing jewelry market: the long-term retailers and suppliers going out of business, the growing market share for online shopping, and the changing lifestyles and tastes of Millennial consumers. According to the Jewelers Board of Trade, there are 13 percent fewer jewelry-only stores this year compared to last.
What can the independent jeweler do to survive all this change? One crucial thing is to have strong supplier partners who are dedicated to helping the independent jeweler remain competitive. That’s why well-financed owner-operated suppliers that manufacture in the United States are growing, despite the challenging environment. Companies like Overnight are expanding by making their independent retailer partners more successful.
Here are four challenges of the changing market and how the right supplier partner can help retailers turn them from threats into opportunities.
Challenge 1: Custom is Now High Tech – Custom jewelry is a growing opportunity for the independent jeweler. According to a recent survey by The Knot, more than 40% of engagement rings today are custom or customized. At the same time, custom design has become more competitive thanks to computer-aided design and manufacturing. These high-tech tools are expensive and continually evolving, requiring significant investment in time and equipment.
Overnight has responded to the shift towards advanced technology creating a state-of-the-art CAD/CAM department, with a large and talented in-house CAD design team and a large number of Solidscape printers to service the growing demand for custom designs from their retail customers. With some of the industry’s best CAD designers, setters and model-makers, Overnight is renowned for the quality of it’s craftsmanship.
To serve retailers who don’t currently offer custom jewelry design, Overnight offers a complete custom design solution, with staff to guide retailers through the process step-by-step. Customers can make changes to any of Overnight’s 50,000 styles or start from scratch. Overnight’s skilled CAD artists create the kind of renderings and models that impress consumers. The turnaround time on custom work is an impressive seven business days after approval for most jobs.
For retailers who choose to do their own CAD designing, Overnight offers CAD support, 3D printing, casting, and setting services to make the process easier and more efficient. Overnight can print any file type and bring the file all the way through to a finished piece.
Based in Long Island, New York, Overnight delivers semi-mounts and finished jewelry in just 3 to 5 business days. Polished blank mountings are delivered in 3 days and castings are delivered in as little as 24 hours after the order is placed.
Challenge 2: The High Cost of Inventory – Another of the biggest issues facing retail jewelers today is excess inventory. It ties up capital, reduces overall turn, and threatens profitability. Inventory that isn’t turning is the most common reason for retailers to struggle financially. By using Overnight’s famous just-in-time U.S. manufacturing, retailers can order just what they need when they need it, eliminating the need for excess inventory.
Another way to reduce inventory to acceptable levels is to stock alloy samples. Overnight’s Authentix program allows retailers to stock low-cost alloy samples of any of Overnight’s styles. Up-to-date pricing in every metal and diamond quality is available on OvernightMountings.com so retailers never have to call for pricing. The company has one of the country’s largest inventory of in-stock styles that can be delivered immediately. And Overnight offers 10-day no-questions-asked returns on all in-stock items. Retailers can order several mountings that a customer may like and have them in-store the next day. They can make the sale and then return any extra products for credit.
Challenge 3: E-Commerce Competition – Online retailers like Amazon and Blue Nile are taking more of the jewelry market. How can a local jeweler compete? By creating a beautiful e-commerce website of their own. Overnight makes it easy for retail brick and mortar jewelers to compete for a growing share of e-commerce sales.
Overnight offers customers use of beautiful 3-D rotating images and in-depth product breakdowns of all products that are easy for retailers to use on their websites, making them as professional as any e-commerce competitor. Using Overnight’s rotating images elevates a retailer’s website to compete nationally with competitors who have invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in technology.
Retailers who don’t have an updated e-commerce site can use Overnight’s web solutions program to create one. Overnight offers easy-to-use modular catalogs using iFrames. Retailers can easily add any product category just by embedding a link. For example, retailers can brand their selection of earrings from hoops to studs and add it to their website just by pasting a link. Hundreds of Overnight customers currently use this program to improve their e-commerce websites and be more successful online.
Challenge 4: Staying on Trend – Which trends will be important for the holiday season and which will fizzle out? Will two-stone diamond rings be a hit or a miss? Retailers can rely on Overnight to always have the latest styles in stock for immediate delivery so they can capitalize on trends as they are happening.
For example, last holiday season Overnight offered a huge selection of open concept diamond line rings: the season’s biggest trend. Top selling items are available in the Authentix alloy sample program, so retailers can easily test trend merchandise with minimal investment, confident that they can order fast-selling styles quickly since they are manufactured here in the U.S.
By carrying the latest design trends, retailers don’t need to rely on branded merchandise to stay current. According to a recent Jewelers of America Product Pulse retail poll, sales of branded jewelry have decreased for 44 percent of retailers over the past three years. Branded jewelry accounts for 10 percent or less of sales for 59 percent of retail jewelers. Instead, Overnight helps retailers develop their own private label in-store brand by offering the right product at the right time, maximizing the opportunity for sales.
And unlike many brands, Overnight has no buy-in requirement or minimum order. “I don’t understand the concept of a large buy in and then a certain purchase requirement for the year,” Overnight president Jeff Adwar said. “I’m confident our customers will come back for our design, quality and service.”
For more information contact Overnight at 888-731-1111 or www.overnightmountings.com.