Online Jewellers vs Retail Jewellers
The BIG question mark ?
So how do I start on a topic that makes simple & yet complete logic to people in the industry.
Sitting in my office observing our diamond grading team hard at work inspecting & professionally grading diamonds for a client who has placed an order for 3 dozen diamond bangles that we will manufacture & ship in 3 weeks. These same clients will then retail the very same diamond bangles in their local country at exorbitant prices from their fancy & glittering retail outlets – 5 branches currently.
I gaze towards the large span of Dubai with the main artery (Sheikh Zayed Road) helping people cross Dubai from one end to the other from Jebel Ali all the way to the outskirts of Sharjah past Dubai International Airport. A state of the art airport which today I believe caters to 50 million+ travellers as Emirates has become one of the foremost ranked airlines in the world. I think & try to visualize the number of tourists that arrive daily in the expectations of experiencing Dubai known for its sun & sand, the biggest and the best shopping malls amongst various other sightseeing places and mostly always returning back home with happy & good memories and lets not forget – yes a piece of jewellery be it a diamond solitaire, diamond earrings or whatever they fancy. Makes sense right ?
And why not Dubai prices are the best in the world. Due to zero duty on diamond imports & no taxes Dubai is fast reaching the epitomic position of becoming the best place to purchase diamonds and jewellery globally.The world is changing and changing fast. Maybe its due to the fact that the internet has become such an integral part of our lives that if it is switched off we will probably find ourselves quite lost. Dependancy is growing and growing fast – be it via mobile/smart phones, iPads, Tablets, laptops, etc – the list goes on and on. The funny thing is so are market trends.
I read this article by chance last night where it states branded jewellers are looking at internet sales much more seriously than in the past as online sales for diamonds & jewelry has catapulted to new heights in recent years. And it hit me in the face. This is what we are exactly doing and this is our vision – with the exception of retail premises as we are diamond merchants & jewelry manufacturers basically in “Wholesale”.
If you have read my other blogs or my LinkedIn profile I was fortunate enough to experience both – the retail and wholesale aspects of the diamond & jewelry business for quite a few years in the Gold Souk in Dubai. Being well travelled and exposed to different markets & cultures on almost a monthly basis (if not weekly) I understood quite clearly that customer trends for purchasing diamonds & jewellery is definitely and unquestionably changing. When branded jewellers are focusing today on an online presence there must be something to it. Logical – right ?
Safe to say I agree a 100% – with the article.
Here’s why: Logically a retailer will spend excessive amounts of capital on securing the right location which quite often leads to a large outlay of cash upfront (referred to as Key-Money), refurbishing the store to very high standards (trying to outdo the neighboring stores or competition) complete with the latest security camera systems, correct diamond lighting to enable the jewelry to sparkle when clients walk in through their doors, visually pleasing jewellery laid out in the best glass cabinets secure enough to avoid any mishaps. But it doesn’t stop there.
Stocking the retail premises with the correct diamond solitaires stock and dazzling jewellery pieces is the most expensive investment. This figure can go from USD $1,000,000 to on average of $3,000,000+ and these figures are on the conservative side. Realistically stock costs more. And still you have to hire at least 2 shifts of staff as retailers are open from 10 am to almost midnight in Dubai. An average of 8-10 employee staff at the very least if not more. Due to cost management most of the staff is under qualified and not certified to sell and they have only 1 objective – to make the sale !
Add on top of that rents, insurance, bank financing, marketing budget, employee salaries, etc. God forbid if a particular jeweler has more than 1 location as then expenses for each location accrue and daily management issues multiply. The list goes on and on but I think you get the picture.
And then the alternative – diamond merchants and online jewellers like us who create excellent rapport with 250+ established diamond manufacturers who buy directly from the diamond mines, cut and polish these very same diamonds in their very own diamond factories and then give us access to their stock so we can sell to our clients directly by adding a nominal margin as WE CAN – due to the absence of hefty expenses as described in the above paragraph. This is where our online platform springs into action: www.dubaiwholesalediamonds.com
Plus we have a very strict rule that favors our clients to their benefit – we don’t take any credit and thus pay our manufacturers “cash on confirmation” as this leads to much better & very competitive pricing as opposed to buying on credit – as is the common practise in the “retail arena“.
We focus more on hiring professional & knowledgeable where possible GIA certified gemologists who are dedicated & experienced in the field and who can add value & actually assist clients by imparting relevant information not sales gibberish to make a sale.
Focus is on working almost 24/7 so that any & every client who approach us get prompt answers to their queries as we are dealing with different time zones – globally. Much to our satisfaction clients are increasing as they know what they want and if they don’t we are there to help them – every step of the way.
That actually puts a smile on my face as I have been told on numerous occasions by the wise old man sometimes saying it “loud” makes one understand it better. And believe me “our clients” have understood too and stand by us based on a common underlying theme: Why Pay Retail when you can buy Wholesale ?
Till next time !
Other articles written by the author which have been published in The National – a leading daily publication in the UAE which comprises of staff from widely respected publications including the Wall Street Journal, New York Times and the Daily Telegraph.
If you are interested in searching for diamonds and or jewellery or know more about our establishment please click on the following link and you will have access to a new world of dazzling rocks – complete with 1,400,000+ certified diamonds at wholesale prices: www.dubaiwholesalediamonds.com