Have Your Festive Season Preparations Commenced?
Yes, we know the festive season is still a long way off – or is it really? In fact, given the busy calendar the jewellery industry follows, what with the myriad jewellery shows (both domestic and international) and the wedding season, it is important to plan and execute for the festive season well before time. Take for instance Rakshabandhan – which is on the 13th August this year – and that’s only 2 and a half months away...Of course Rakshabandhan is a great excuse for some serious gifting to happen. In fact it’s time that you look beyond the Dhanteras and Diwali mania – Teej, Ganesh Chaturthi, Navratri, Dussehra, Karwa Chauth and Ahoyi Ashtami are some other festivals around which some hype can be generated and new schemes et al be launched to ensure increased footfalls and sales. So, before the frenzy begins, here are some areas that you ought to give a long hard look: Your stock...Fashion pundits have already made their predictions for the festive season – the pieces that are touted to be a part of every fashionista’s wardrobe - chandelier ear rings, cocktail rings, cuff bracelets, multi layered chains and hairpieces – which means that these should be part of your stock too. Besides ensuring that the jewellery consumer will always find buy-worthy jewellery at your store, another advantage is that these pieces can be bought individually and make for excellent gifting options, especially for the customer who is on a rather tight budget but still wants to buy something striking – this is especially true with the increasing prices of gold, silver and diamonds. Bright, colourful jewellery is also supposed to be fashionable this year. The schemes that you are going to offer...Do look beyond the usual discount and free making charges options. Many customers would be supremely happy to receive gifts in lieu of cash discounts – maybe something like a makeover session with a renowned stylist, a gift coupon from a spa, or even some nice traditional designer saris would be great options to offer the customer. But it’s important to get creative with the gifts... Your sales staff...Do ensure that your sales staff is trained well – The jewellery consumer is getting more and more savvy – she travels more, is exposed to a variety of designs, is on the net more often, and is fast turning into a connoisseur of sorts. So, there are some topics that your staff should be thoroughly knowledgeable about, and these include hallmarking, certification, the 4Cs, sustainability, fair jewellery, taking care of and storing jewellery, and being able to gauge accurately the consumer’s personality and mindset so that the right jewellery can be suggested to her – ensuring good sales. What’s more, all these questions must be answered clearly and lucidly. Time flies fast - and before long the festive season will be here...here’s to a great festive season, albeit with a lot of groundwork...do tell us about your preparations too!