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Articles from EDUCATION / TRAINING (180 Articles), BUYING GROUPS (80 Articles)












With Christmas on the horizon, buying groups have offered strategies jewellers can employ
With Christmas on the horizon, buying groups have offered strategies jewellers can employ

Jewellers gearing up for Christmas challenges

Despite tough trading conditions, buying group heads agreed that jewellers who remained positive and implemented certain strategies during the Christmas period would place themselves in good stead for a positive outcome.

Nationwide Jewellers managing director Colin Pocklington said staff training, consumer financing and window displays that included some ‘loss leader’ pieces and visible price tickets on all items were important areas to address in order to manage the upcoming festive season. 

“Use this time to clear as much old stock as possible, which will take the pressure off cashflow in 2018, and make room for better performing ranges,” Pocklington stated.

He also emphasised the importance of marketing, stating that it was the one cost that should never be cut.

Colin Pocklington, Nationwide Jewellers managing director
"Use this time to clear as much old stock as possible."
Colin Pocklington, Nationwide Jewellers managing director

Pocklington added members who had started to implement strategies from his ‘New Normal’ seminar presented at the buying group’s conference in June and this year’s International Jewellery Fair – such as in-store experience, custom design, staff training, and social media marketing – should expect “reasonable” sales over the Christmas period.

Showcase Jewellers general manager Carson Webb said his buying group was providing members with information on security, sales targets, visual merchandising, other retail ideas and staff training in the lead up to the festive season.

Webb stated that jewellers needed to be aware that Christmas sales were becoming ‘flatlined’ and should manage expectations accordingly.

“For most, the percentage is no longer the big 25 per cent of sales in December. For some stores this period can be as low as 18 per cent; however, they have excellent growth across most other months of trade,” he explained.

Carson Webb, Showcase Jewellers general manager
"We can’t change the situation; however, we can change how our stores are presented."
Carson Webb, Showcase Jewellers general manager

Webb said rather than discussing market challenges, the industry required a proactive approach: “You can’t afford to allow yourself to get consumed by the negative talk. We can’t change the situation; however, we can change how our stores are presented and what’s on offer to our customers and, importantly, the way in which staff engage with them.”

Tough trade

The comments followed recent ABS statistics that showed a below average 1.44 per cent year-on-year retail sales increase for September and a relatively unchanged (0 per cent) seasonally adjusted sales result compared to August 2017.

Sales in the clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing category, which includes jewellery, declined 0.7 per cent compared to the previous month.

According to Australian Retailers Association (ARA) executive director Russell Zimmerman, the figures did not bode well for Christmas trade and he urged the Federal Government to refocus on increasing disposable income.

“With Christmas not too far away, and the ARA Roy Morgan Pre-Christmas Sales Predictions to be released in a couple of weeks, these figures are in all honesty alarming,” Zimmerman said.

The ARA Roy Morgan Pre-Christmas Sales Predictions report will be released on 14 November.

More reading
Buying groups address challenging jewellery landscape
Jewellery conference confronts challenging landscape
Christmas jewellery sales represent new normal
 




















Sunday, 19 November, 2017 09:24pm
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