Jewellery retail between online and offline
During Digital Talks, the brainchild of a collaboration between Federpreziosi Confcommercio Imprese for Italy and Italian Exhibition Group-IEG, much attention was given to a study, entitled “Multi-channelling and Omni-channelling – Retail in search of its own dimension,” carried out by Osservatorio Federpreziosi and organized by Format Research, on the relationship between jewellery retailers and digital evolution.
The study portrays the jewellery sector as stable, and this is one of the first facts to emerge, and highlights the different aspects linked to the sector’s development in relation to the digital breakthrough. In a sector where 66% of jewellers are on line, to what degree can today’s jewellers unite the “physical” showcase with the “virtual one”?
The recorded increase in the number of companies mainly regards jewellers in North Italy (+3.1%) compared to Central South (+2.1%) and those that have been able to innovate, not only through e-commerce but also by adopting simple digital tools to deal with social communication and website management, seem to be more solid. Confirming this is the figure regarding a comparison between the revenues of companies that have a virtual window and those that have not yet implemented digital services: those who know how to move on the web record sales volumes of about one and a half times higher. Among jewellers with a website, 4.4% register revenues in excess of 10 million Euros while among those companies that offer e-commerce, 5.5% record even higher revenues. Facing change can therefore no longer be considered as a choice but rather as a necessity, to all effects, aimed at business survival.
The data relating to on-line purchases, compared to those relating to requests made on search engines to identify and contact traditional jewellers, are substantially the same: from observing the network in relation to the study, it emerges that searching for a sales point within one’s own territory is more common in large metropolitan areas, while searching for stores that provide an on-line shopping service is high in all regions of Italy. This finding underlines how the greater sales capacity of companies in the North could correspond to a greater capacity to cover buying needs throughout Italy.
The ground to cover in the near future is one of staff training, which needs to adjust to the various ways of contacting the client through the use of tools and relational sensitivity.