The Valentine’s Vault: A Merchandising Mix That’ll Hit the Mark

With the holiday season upon us, it’s time to turn our attention to the next biggest jewelry occasion of the year – Valentine’s Day. This month we take a look at how to turn this hallmark extravaganza into a celebration of sales. From marketing tips and out-of-the-box PR ideas to merchandising mixes and customized diamond designs, make Cupid’s arrow aim straight for your stores this February 14th.

Trends And Tips

According to a survey carried out behalf of Sears last year, nearly one-third of women (29 percent) would choose jewelry if they could receive only one gift for Valentine’s Day. So are these 29% getting their jewelry? No, niet, read our lips – definitely not. Most (if they’re lucky enough) get flowers and chocolates and maybe a gift card. It seems that most men think jewelry is ‘too’ expensive, but the money they’re laying out for a bouquet of flowers, a box of chocolates and gift-card, could just as easily get them a beautiful piece of jewelry that their beloved is sure to appreciate much more. So how do we tell the men that jewelry is what their loves want and let them know that it’s more affordable than they think?

Valentine’s is also the time when engagement rings enter the psyche of the single, but in-love, male (and female). This same survey also reported that 26 percent of single consumers think that between $2,000 and $4,999 is an appropriate amount to spend on a diamond engagement ring, with almost half of those questioned noting that an appropriate price would be under $2000. In fact, an additional 22 % said a realistic amount they would pay would be between $1,000 and $1,999. This is supported by a recent trade journal article stating that the independent jeweler’s average diamond engagement ring sale is $4,500, with their chain store counterparts coming in at $2,500.

So what does this mean for your Valentine’s Day selection?

*Price counts: Make sure your Valentine’s mix includes an area focused on lower price point items. Silver jewelry, crystal and bead items and a large choice of charms in a range of motifs.

*Heart shaped and themed pieces are always sure-fire winners, but this year keep an eye out for time-honored styles and designs, with maybe just a little bit of a twist. Fashion-forward isn’t the first thought when it comes to Cupid’s celebration.

*Diamond studs and pearls are always popular. Classic gemstone and pearl pieces in mid-range price points are expected to sell well.

*Don’t forget the men. Feature cufflinks, watches, masculine bracelets and pendants in the lead-up to February 14th. She may be top of mind when it comes to your Valentine’s mix, but don’t ignore the other sex. Make sure she has a selection to consider for her significant other when she’s shopping in your store.

*Children’s jewelry is an often over-looked category much to a retailers’ detriment. If a consumer is coming in to purchase something for his or her other half, chances are he (or she) will also be interested in an add-on to celebrate not just each other, but their children too. Children’s heart-shaped lockets are mega sellers during this period, along with pendants, rings and bracelets featuring initials or the child’s name in gold.

Next week we look at ways to promote your Valentine’s message. From male-only events to hint dropping programs – make sure your marketing arrow hits the mark on February 14th 2013.

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