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Image courtesy: Instyle
Image courtesy: Instyle

Retail tips for winning over watch consumers

It’s no secret that the watch market is saturated and gaining sales has become even more difficult with the advent of online and grey market retailing. EMILY MOBBS speaks with suppliers about how they are helping bricks-and-mortar jewellers improve service and win over consumers who are spoilt for choice.

Hipp managing director David Faraday says retail stockists are provided with product information highlighting Oozoo Timepieces and Dukudu’s credentials for quality, function and after-sales support; however, it doesn’t stop there.


“What is equally as useful to our retail customers is provision of consumer-focused catalogues – models and codes but no wholesale info – matched with our willingness to supply them off-range models super quickly,” Faraday explains. “When a customer in store quotes a model they saw online that may not physically be in stock, the retailer also has virtual stock and can make that sale occur confidently and immediately.”

AJ Watch Repairs national brand manager Krzysztof Jakubaszek says he receives enquiries from retailers Australia-wide on how to better train staff to sell more watches.

“A good start is ensuring staff members know how to compare the brands,” Jakubaszek explains. “The edge can be guiding the customer away from other brands and product knowledge and industry insight help here.”

Knowing which companies offer good after-sales service can also help secure sales, Jakubaszek continues.

Seiko Australia group marketing manager Stuart Smith notes the importance of product knowledge as well.

In addition to developing a training booklet for retail stockists, Smith says Seiko’s sales team regularly conducts product-knowledge sessions with retailers to ensure a high-level of customer service.

“Our website is also a great tool for retailers and consumers to gain information on our collections,” he adds.

Daniel Wellington
Daniel Wellington

BYMR managing director Nils Rasmussen says staff product training and product knowledge is viewed as paramount to sales success; however, there is another key element.

“There are the technical details to be across, which we provide in our seasonal catalogues or via the Australian version of the Bering website but, for Bering, the brand story and its continuing efforts in supporting charities and organisations that research and protect the arctic habitat of the polar bear are also important as part of the selling process,” he explains.

Instyle Watches managing director Jeanette Sceats says the supplier provides incentives to employees: “We have an array of incentives and gifts provided to our highly-trained staff in which to keep our sales and motivation in perfect order.”

She explains staff members that reach certain targets receive watches, jewellery and also vouchers.

West End Collection general manager John Rose offers a similar view, stating that regular competitions are organised as ways to motivate retailers.

OOZOO Timepieces
OOZOO Timepieces

“We incentivise retail staff by regularly running in-house competitions whereby a staff member can win themselves a watch of their choice once they achieve certain sales goals,” Rose says. “We like our retailers to know our watches intimately and the best way for this to happen is for them to wear a watch themselves. It is just as important for a retail salesperson to own multiple watches and to wear them according to the season and their outfits as it is for our customers to do the same.”

In commenting on how Durafex Group Australia is supporting retailers to strengthen in-store service, the supplier’s watch division sales manager Jeff Rennie provides sound retail advice.

“We have seen more competition in the watch category with the rise of online shopping but also the introduction of numerous new watch brands,” he says. “Our focus is being true to our own brands and supporting our retail partners [stockists] as much as possible, including training and promotions. The key point is to know your customer base and buy accordingly – what sells well for one store in a certain territory may not necessarily work for another.”

Competition is rife but solace should come from the fact that suppliers are focused on providing support.

Tuesday, 23 April, 2019 10:57am
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