Annual Report on the State of the Jewelry BusinessPosted Nov 18, 2020
State of the Jewelry Industry
THE MVEye’s Annual Report on the State of the Jewelry Business
Even as the economy has been ravaged by Covid, jewelry consumers are still shopping and giving to family, friends and even themselves. There is something about the emotional embodiment found in a gift of jewelry that is propelling a boom in sales since April 2020. And this boom is likely to continue through the holiday shopping season.
But what is the current state of the jewelry industry and its preparedness for this unique time.
The jewelry industry today is an industry in pain. Plagued by:
Deterioration of a key product category (mined diamonds)
Inflated inventory valuations and excessive non selling inventories
Small independent players struggling against one giant (Signet)
Over retailed for the consuming population
The digital divide
Few succession plans
Fewer women, negligible ethnic diversity and no youth
But the number one challenge faced by the jewelry industry is a focus on the wrong consumer.
Today’s jewelry consumer is young, ethnically diverse, digitally native and focused on core value drivers in their brand and product purchases, such as sustainability, chain of custody and ethical sourcing.
Today’s jewelry industry is still largely lead and managed by older white males, designing, developing, marketing and distributing a product that is pre-dominantly worn by women.
And the bulk of the marketing still targets the baby boom generation (despite the daily loss of spending from that demographic) and its now ancient messaging of a man being the only purchaser of a diamond engagement ring and a woman being the only recipient.
Yet demography is clearing showing the jewelry industry the path to the new consumers, defined by three massive spending segments, each of which is at the beginning of their discretionary spending experience. An experience that will provide successful brands and products with 40 years of loyalty, if they act now.
These three key consumer segments are:
Next-generation bridal consumers
The jewelry industry must embrace these new consumers, employ them, design for them, market to them, and provide innovative shopping experiences for them.
Those in the jewelry business who win these new consumers will win the race. Here are a few reasons why:
America’s 44 million plus Hispanics are the fastest-growing consumer group in the country. It is estimated that nearly 8 of 10 (79.3%) Hispanic consumers in the USA will purchase at least one fine jewelry product in the next 12 months, with a median retail price point of $250. The estimated market sizing for Hispanic Jewelry Market in the USA is $8.7 billion.
Self-purchasing females are likely to buy jewelry for themselves or as gifts for others up to 4 times per year compared to male purchasers who are likely to purchase less than 1 time per year (or even per lifetime). 
Next-generation bridal consumers
Jewelry consumers are asking for lab-grown diamonds, and they expect the product to be among the fine jewelry offerings where they shop. Research reveals that 62% of 138 retailers find that between 5% and 50% of their customers ask specifically for lab-grown diamonds.
In fact, 8% of 1,027 jewelry consumers recently surveyed said that not only were they aware of lab-grown diamonds but actually own or have purchased lab-grown diamonds in the past.
The jewelry business, born from a primal need for adornment and propelled annually by a resilient consumer, faces a crossroads in 2020. The opportunity for growth, with the next generation of consumers, is significant but requires, as a starting point, the acceptance of radical change over tradition.
MVI Marketing LLC
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