How to start a jewelry business online?
If you have a jewelry business, congratulations, this is something that takes a lot of studying, hard work and skill to accomplish. You should be proud of your efforts but it’s important to realize that the jewelry industry is as competitive as it gets. To stay successful, you should be taking advantage of the modern digital world, which offers much greater opportunities to reach new customers.
This step can be intimidating but don’t worry, you’ve already accomplished the hardest part of creating a strong jewelry business. Here are some tips to help you successfully make the step onto online.
#1 – Don’t Skimp On Photography
The first step is to realize that it is going to require some expertise and possibly investment to get high quality, high resolution images that show off your jewelry in spectacular fashion. Your collections may look amazing in person, but it takes work to get them looking as persuasive online.
When looking at a good return on investment, I really do feel that finding a professional photographer that can take great photos of your designs is going to consistently have the biggest impact for your jewelry store.
A skilled photographer with a strong portfolio of jewelry work should be your first port of call. When looking through their samples, look for how they use the background and placement to make the jewelry stand out. Are there bad reflections and ugly shadows? If so, then you might want to keep looking.
Your product is visual. Photography is probably the one area that will have the biggest impact on your sales, so take incredible photos and let them become your best sales people.
#2 – Words Also Matter
While your photos will speak to the quality of your product, your written content will speak to your brand. Language can be used in a variety of different ways, depending on the effect you want to have on your customers. The content can enhance your designs through elegant prose, instill trust through professional wording, and engage emotions through the telling of your company’s story.
We would recommend hiring a copywriter that can make words jump off the (web)page and connect with readers. There are too many jewelry sites that are, honestly, just boring and not fun to read. I would recommend trying to be creative. The wording should be an extension of your designs. So if your design looks like it would inspire poetry, why not include poetry with your imagery?
Aim higher and you will be rewarded.
#3 – Do Your Homework
To get your jewelry business where it is today, no doubt you spent a lot of time learning about the industry and your market. If you want to be just as successful online, it’s time to get back to school. Of course I’m not being literal, but it’s really important to plan your online business just like your planned for the founding of your company.
Research your competitors – their sites, their ad campaigns, their marketing. Look into payment methods, how shipping will work, what the best practice is for a returns policy. The work you put in now will save you so much time later. Trust me, you don’t want to have to deal with an online store that is missing an important link in the chain that ruins the customer experience.
The consumer is so used to purchasing online now that they expect it to work perfectly every time. Test, test and test it again before you go live with the online sales section of your online jewelry business.
#4 – Find The Right Website Platform
Setting up a website these days is getting easier and easier. The fact that is it no longer a scary prospect is due to a number of user-friendly web building platforms on the market today. The real challenge is actually the diversity of options and finding the right choice for you. I would suggest doing homework about WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, Weebly, Shopify and Magento.
Personally, if budgets are tight I like to work with Wix, which is incredibly user-friendly and designed for ease of use, however it might be frustrating if you want to do something that falls outside of the lines of what the platform and theme can do.
If you want the comfort of Wix with a more serious e-commerce toolset, I would recommend Shopify, whereas I don’t feel there’s much difference between Wiz and Squarespace.
When I want to customize something a bit more special, WordPress is what I typically turn to. WordPress has a lot more options and themes to be able to create whatever you want, but it might need assistance from a programmer or someone experienced with the platform.
Finally, Magento is the most advanced platform and a good option for bigger companies with the budget to invest in high-trafficked e-commerce websites.
If you are unsure, drop me a line and I’d be happy to advise.
#5 – Build Your Contact List
Whether selling in store or online, you should be collecting email addresses from your customers. This database can then be used to market directly to them in the form of announcements, email marketing campaigns or newsletters.
Finding new customers is important of course, but this contact list will be of people who you know are interested in your designs. If they bought from you once there is every chance they will do so again, so deliver smart messaging and valuable content to keep them connected to your brand.
There are a number of email marketing platforms but MailChimp is the current champion with an easy to use interface and a free version that supports up to 2, 000 subscribers.
You’re Ready to Start Selling Your Jewelry Online!
These are just a few simple steps to get you started. Be empowered by the fact that you’ve already done the hard part of setting up a business, and that these days, the online component really can be worked out by anyone, as long as you spend a bit of time on it.
As always I am happy to advise if you find yourself stuck at any point.