A guest post by Bridget Sandorford of CulinarySchools.org
Attending jewelry shows is a great way to sell your products and to build relationships with new customers. Having a successful show requires more than just showing up with your jewelry and hoping for the best. Taking the time to plan for the show and to properly market yourself while there can ensure that you get the most benefit from your participation. Here are a few things you can do to make sure you have a successful show:
Use Unique Displays
Presentation counts for a lot. The right presentation will catch your customers' eye and draw them in. The right presentation will also make your jewelry appear more professional and of higher value. Experiment with different props and displays beyond the traditional mannequins and silhouettes. Some ideas to consider include old jewelry boxes, mirrors, large shells, pieces of driftwood, antique serving trays, picture frames, pin boards, mesh screens, and colorful scarves. Choose items that reflect the style of your jewelry for an organic display.
Include a Variety of Items
Attract the largest number of customers by including a variety of pieces that reflect different styles and different price points. If you make all types of jewelry, include items such as necklaces, earrings, bracelets, brooches, and matching sets. If you specialize in one particular type of jewelry -- such as rings -- include items with different stones, different colors, and different styles. Providing your customers with variety will give them more options to buy, both for themselves and for gifts for others. Include items that are different prices so that you can attract customers with all types of budgets. Don't price yourself completely out reach for some customers, but don't undersell yourself either.
Many customers like to browse and to quietly make their own selections. Some of these customers could be turned away by having to discuss price, or feel pressured by artists trying to talk up the pieces. Make it easy for your customers to make their selections without feeling pressured by tagging all the pieces with their prices. If your customers want to discuss the price with you or ask for a discount, they can do so.
Accept Multiple Forms of Payment
Not everyone carries cash, and fewer people are using checkbooks these days. Make it easy for your customers to purchase your items by accepting multiple forms of payment. You don't have to have a business account with a credit card company in order to accept credit and debit cards. Services such as Paypal (www.paypal.com) allow you to easily accept credit and debit cards for a small feel on each transaction. Customers can pay through a laptop set up at your booth or through a mobile phone. They do not have to have an account to use the service, but you have to have an account to accept payment. All payments you receive can then be deposited into your personal bank account.
Use Professional Packaging
You're not finished once you make the sale. Be sure to use attractive, professional packaging to make the best final impression and to encourage customers to repeat their business. Use backings for earrings and small boxes for necklaces, rings, bracelets, and other pieces. Make sure your business name or logo is printed on the packaging. Include your business card, or have your contact information or Web site printed on the packaging. Put the purchases in decorate bags or cloth pouches. Offer gift wrapping for gift purchases, or tie a small ribbon around the box or bag. These small touches will leave a good impression that encourage customers to purchase from you again and to refer your products to their friends.
There are many more things you can do to have a successful jewelry show, but taking these basic steps can get you started in the right direction and help you to maximize your sales. The more experience you gain, the more ways you will find to improve your success based on your individual goals. For those readers who have attended many jewelry shows in the past, what are some of your tips for success?
Tell us about them in the comments!
Author Byline Bridget Sandorford is a grant researcher and writer for CulinarySchools.org. Along with her passion for whipping up recipes that incorporate “superfoods”, she recently finished research on culinary schools in Ohio and culinary schools in Washington State.
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