As the Holiday sales season approaches, it is the perfect time for the retail jeweller to take a few moments to be certain the showcase display presentations in the store are ready. Making the effort to get everything ready for the rush of customers pays off in higher sales, typically at better margins.
Here are a few quick easy suggestions to making your cases present your merchandise at its best.
- Replace any old, ragged display elements. It is hard for you to convincingly tell your customer about the “high quality” of a piece of your jewellery when the neckform you took it from looks like a refugee from a garage sale.
- Take a few minutes each day over the next few weeks and clean off all that accumulated sweat, dirt, makeup, dust, grime, jewelers rouge and whatever else has found its way into your cases. Use a diluted solution of “Simple Green” cleaner on your leatherettes but be careful NOT to scrub off the varnish coating. Let the cleaner do the work. Suedes can be cleaned with suede cleaner. Call your display supplier for suggestions.
- Tired looking showcases and a tight budget? Change out the floorboard fabric to a different color. For about $40 per showcase you can give your cases a new look even with your display trays from 1985. Use professional grade fabrics from your display provider to be sure the new fabric does not fade or emit sulphur dioxide fumes that will tarnish your jewellery and turn the goods black. Fabric from the shop down the street is not made for the heavy duty conditions inside your case.
- Replace any burned out light bulbs in or above the showcases. Customers won’t buy what they can’t see.
- Pick out the 4-6 items in each showcase you want most to sell this year and display them differently from everything else in the case. Example: Put a ring on a finger with a business card under it and the words “My personal favorite.” Get “key item” displays from your display vendor. Do something to attract extra attention to those few items. The more people that see them, the better the odds are they will have new homes by New Year’s Day.
- Put price tags on a few items in each case that look like “really great deals.” If your customer sees a piece of jewellery in the case that looks like it should sell for about $1000 and you have it for $699, they perceive your store as having “good values.” On everything. Remember, everyone that comes into your store is an amateur appraiser. Show them a few good values and their impression will be the entire store is full of bargains.
- Take photos of each showcase and its contents on November 1 and December 1. In January, when you look back on your Holiday results, it will help you to be able to look back at how your merchandise was presented. If a particular layout resulted in sales that were great, do more. If sales were soft, try something different. Without a photo record, you might make the same display mistakes repeatedly or miss chances to improve.
- When it comes to Holiday décor, consider decorating the store interior and NOT the inside of the showcases. I see many retailers filling their cases with Holiday glitter that outshines the merchandise. Never put anything shiny in the showcase that isn’t for sale.
- On December 15, go into full court press. Add signs directing your customer to a predetermined selection of last minute gift ideas. You client has no time to waste, so do the thinking for them. Make it easy for them to find the right item, quickly and without hassle. They will remember you had the answer next year when they are late again.
Implementing these easy checkpoints has the potential to help you positively impact your sales in this upcoming Holiday season. Try them and see if they provide you with your own personal version of “Holiday cheer.” Good luck!