Chapter 17 - Conclusion and Recommendations

We've discussed the different types of retail options open to you, from the cash guzzling shop to the soul destroyer that can be eBay. We've touched on the different types of jewellery you might choose to stock in your new business. We've looked at the different range of suppliers, and what you should expect when dealing with them. And we've analysed the most common problems that afflict new and more established jewellery retailers.

Only you can decide what sort of business you are going to run and how you are going to run it. Only you can decide the styles of stock you will carry and the suppliers you will seek to do business with. I've seen many small jewellery businesses come and go, and I've seen a small number thrive and grow. I can't make the decision for you as to what to sell, where to sell it, or which suppliers to do business with. But I can tell you what I would do if I were in your shoes, eager to start up as a jewellery retailer, or to fix the problems in my jewellery business.

If it were me:
  1. I would start small, and be very careful not to over reach in the early months. This means keeping start-up costs to a minimum, and not even entertaining the idea of opening a traditional shop until I had a lot more experience in the jewellery business.
  2. I would visit one of the large trade shows in order to see what was out there in terms of jewellery and packaging.
  3. I would visit some of the walk in jewellery wholesaler showrooms, common in most large cities, and I would do so without buying anything.
  4. I would search the internet for different suppliers, comparing their stock and prices, and I would select four or five different suppliers to place a small sample order with. This would be my first real expenditure.
  5. I would look online, in the same way, for packaging and display suppliers, and I would place a small order, just enough to cover the jewellery I have already bought.
  6. I would buy a fold up table and ensure the seats of my car fold down.
  7. I would visit a couple of car boot sales in different parts of the country, set up my stall, meet lots of people, see how they liked my jewellery, and hope that I manage to sell at least one item.
  8. I would not get disheartened if I did not sell anything.
  9. I would search the internet to locate fairs and shows that allow jewellery sellers, and visit one of these shows. This would be my first real sale at which I expect to make real money.
  10. I would use my profits from this show to invest in more jewellery and styles that sold well, from the best suppliers of those I sampled.
  11. I would do more shows, and more research into shows and markets, planning ahead by a number of weeks or months, investing in more stock and displays from the profits.
  12. I would work this model for a full year, experiencing the Christmas rush, the January downturn, the problems caused by poor weather and times of the year when cash is scarce for consumers.
  13. I would use this year to test and source better suppliers, building relationships over time, and growing my range of stock.
  14. At the end of my first year, I would look at my profits. If I had avoided the many pitfalls common to jewellery sellers, and made as few mistakes as possible, I would expect to have generated a tidy and respectable income.
  15. I would go into year two expecting a large increase in turnover and profits.

This is what I would do. It's not easy, it's not plain sailing, and it involves real work. It involves getting up early many mornings, working in the evenings in preparation for the next day, and watching a business build up over time. It may lead to a life of the same for many years; it may lead to a successful shop in a busy shopping centre a few years down the road; it may lead to a party plan business or eCommerce business with many employees and a large turnover. But if you do it right, and avoid all the common mistakes, what it should not lead to is failure.

  1. All photographs of sample stock in this eBook were taken from the 2010 and 2011 Catalogues of Nirvana Wholesale.
  2. This eBook focuses on retailing in the UK and Ireland.

Please note that much of this publication is based on personal experience and anecdotal evidence. Although the author and publisher have made every reasonable attempt to achieve complete accuracy of the content in this Guide, they assume no responsibility for errors or omissions. Also, you should use this information as you see fit, and at your own risk. Your particular situation may not be exactly suited to the examples illustrated here; in fact, it's likely that they won't be the same, and you should adjust your use of the information and recommendations accordingly.

Finally, use your head. Nothing in this eBook is intended to replace common sense, legal, or other professional advice, and is meant to inform and entertain the reader.


© 2011 by Dolmen Media.

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