It’s the home stretch.

One week to go for this selling season and it should be busy. The last week before Christmas often accounts for more than 50% of the holiday sales. For some stores that is about one quarter of the year’s revenue. It is an important week and you need to make the most of it.

Enjoy the festive moods and strong sales but never forget that the holiday season is one of the most dangerous times of the year for retail jewellers. Review your security policies every morning at your staff meeting. When it is really busy assign one person to be a watcher, casually walking the store and observing from all angles. You can never be too vigilant.

Be patient with your customers. The holidays can be stressful. Offer them refreshments and allow them to relax a bit before getting down to serious selling. You want your store to feel like a calm, safe haven from the insanity of the malls. Once they have mellowed out you can encourage them to stay a bit longer by suggesting gift ideas for distant family members, friends and colleagues.

Always watch for that tired guy stopping in on his way home from work. If he is coming in this late in the season, he desperately needs your help. All he wants is someone to make him a hero as quickly and painlessly as possible. Guide him to that special gift and then follow it up by solving all of his other gift needs. Provide a one-stop solution to his holiday shopping and he will be ecstatic.

Your employees are working their hearts out for you. Make sure there is always a supply of snacks, soft drinks and a hot lunch. If the season has been kind to you, be generous with your team. Almost everyone that works in a jewellery store has their eye on a special piece for themselves. Find a way for them to own it. A deep discount and payment plan may be one way or even an outright gift, if appropriate to the situation and budget. They will share their own excitement of wearing a beautiful jewel with their customers and make better sales so it is a win-win for everyone.

The last weekend before the holiday is traditionally the busiest for jewellery stores. Falling in the middle between Christmas and New Year; the following weekend may be just as strong, if not stronger. The festive atmosphere will continue to drive sales well into January. Keep the energy going and don’t slow down. This year it is a marathon, not a sprint.

I wish everyone a joyous and profitable season no matter which holiday you celebrate.


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