How COVID-19 Has Impacted the Jewelry Industry and How Businesses Can Adapt

 (photo credit: LEAH KELLEY FROM PEXELS)
If you run a jewelry business, you are probably well aware of how COVID-19 has halted in-person shopping for many industries. You will see that your sales have gone down since you were likely unable to open your store for at least a few weeks. While retail locations have been allowed to re-open in many places around the world, you’re still probably seeing the effects COVID-19 has had on your business. There are some great ways you can turn things around and get back to business as usual.
Jewelry Sales During COVID-19
According to some reports, jewelry sales dropped by as much as 82 percent during the initial stages of the coronavirus when people were quarantined at home and retail shops were shuttered across the globe. According to Edahn Golan, jewelry sales in February of 2020 were $2.65 billion, but had dropped to only $470 million in April. Though April tends to be a slower month in the jewelry business, this level of sales hasn’t been seen since the 1980s. May reported an increase in sales and experts predict that the jewelry business will continue to bounce back as 2020 goes forward.
Weddings and Jewel Sales During the Pandemic
Because many weddings and engagements were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic, the sales of lab grown diamonds dropped by 72 percent, which brought the prices of such jewels down by about 13 percent. However, in May, the increase in lab grown diamond sales went up by 150 percent, indicating that the market is set to bounce back in the coming months as people start again to book weddings and buy engagement rings.
Independent Jewelry Sales and Small Businesses
For people who operate a small jewelry business, the impact of COVID-19 has seen a shift from in-person sales to online sales. This is perhaps the biggest indicator of where the jewelry industry is headed as a result of the pandemic. Learning a new normal happened nearly overnight for many small businesses and making changes and figuring out how to proceed is something that is going to impact how these small businesses are run for many years to come.
Virtual Networking
One of the biggest trends seen from the pandemic is the shift to more virtual ways of running a business. Proactive brands spent time during the quarantine building their online presence via social media. For example, some of them made connections on Instagram, creating the opportunity to secure future customers based on that relationship.
Another way that proved successful was jewelers making use of their own websites, social media platforms and YouTube to sell diamonds. For example, video technology used by leading online jewelers bridges the sales funnel enabling customers see products in as close a way to a personal inspection as possible without visiting a store.
Many brands set records for online sales during the quarantine, Sotheby’s being one of them. This is likely because customers weren’t able to visit brick and mortar stores, but also had extra money on hand since they couldn’t spend it on dining out, vacations, and traditional shopping trips.
Why Customers are Still Buying
photo credit:Andrea Piacquadio from Pexelsphoto credit:Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels
Despite the massive drop in jewelry sales during March and April of 2020, things seem to be on the rise again. According to data published in Business Weekly, people used their time in quarantine to evaluate their life and their values and many of them are now purchasing jewelry as a self-care measure to reward themselves for their time in quarantine. Others are buying jewelry for loved ones as a way to acknowledge the difficulties we’ve been through during the pandemic. Another reason why jewelry sales are seeing a rise is because people are shopping as a way to escape the reality of what’s happening in the world.
Direct to Consumer Jewelry Sales
As things continue to go back to normal, those in the jewelry industry are seeing another trend, that being that direct to consumer sales are on the rise. Because jewelry brands had to get creative during quarantine, they spent more time appealing to specific customers, which works because it makes those potential buyers feel valued and important. By tailoring what they are selling, these brands are able to bring in specific clients and market the items they are looking for. Most experts agree that this will continue, even as traditional jewelry stores are able to open back up and return to business as usual.
Much like other businesses, the pandemic had both a positive and a negative impact on the jewelry industry. While sales may have dropped for a couple of months, sellers have found innovative new ways to reach customers, something that will carry them forward, even when the pandemic is over.