Three ways to increase your average repair sales
Today every dollar counts. You and your staff are doing whatever you
can to make it through these times. Most jewelers are finding the
shop still is the main stay for positive cash flow. People still need
to have their favorite piece of jewelry repaired. Once you get used
to wearing a piece of jewelry, it becomes part of you. You don’t want
to be without it; not wearing it makes you feel “naked”.
Repair traffic for many stores has remained about the same. So how
do you keep increase the shop’s sales? It’s easier than you think.
- Look for and offer to repair anything that is needed on the
Many times the customer just says “I need my ring sized larger”.
Many sales staff will just “clerk” it by taking it in for sizing.
Customers will appreciate the service if you do a thorough inspection
of their piece before take in. You’re probably looking over the ring
now to see if anything is chipped to notate on the envelope, but now
you’re looking for problems that might fester itself in the future.
Pull out a writing pad and just say “I’m going to inspect your ring
thoroughly first”. Use an eye loupe to inspect the item and say
things you see and write them down on the pad. It might go like this:
“Hmmm, looks like 2 of your prongs are very thin; in fact one is
standing up a bit. Do you find this ring catches some times on your
clothes?” Then write on the pad “needs 4 tips”.
“I can see the shank is bent here at the bottom and there’s a line
where the ring was sized before. It’s very thin and bends because of
that. I’d make a suggestion that you replace just the bottom shank
part of the ring, making it thicker and stronger. It will also make
it look brand new again.”
Write down on the pad “New 1/2 shank”
Show the customer with the loupe the tips or draw a picture on the
pad of a good tip and a bad tip. Our price book has those pictures
already in chapter 200.
Back to the pad, write down on line 3 “size ring to a 7” and write
the price. Then write on the other 2 lines the prices to retip and
reshank. Draw a line under the last price, add them up and write down
the total price. DO NOT SPEAK THE PRICE! Just point to each repair
and describe quickly what you’ll be doing to fix the ring and then
just point to the total, without saying in verbal words of price, and
say “And that’s all it will be”.
Customers can read! Don’t say the price. It’s the same effect as 2
ways of saying this price: “$89.95”
You can say “eighty nine dollars and ninety five cents” or “Eighty
nine, ninety five”
The second line sounds less expensive. POINTING to the price is even
less expensive sounding.
- Check and Diamond stones and warranty their loss.
Our price book in the sizing chapter has check and tightening stones
already added in, but there’s plenty of opportunity to offer this
service on almost any repair. We add in additional monies to have our
jeweler check each stone for tightness. If loose we’ll make them
tight and will guarantee for a year that they won’t get loose, we’ll
tighten for free and if they fall out, we’ll replace them for a year.
No monkey business or playing around. If the stones come out, we
replace them. You don’t have to blanketly guarantee everything; some
people stop their stone loss guarantee at 1 carat. But here’s the
long and short of it:
If prong set, must be at least 4 prongs.
If over 1/2 carat, must be in 6 prongs.
If over 1/2 carat and only has 4 prongs, them must be set into
Prongs must be in good shape, as well if bead or channel set, they
must be in good condition as well.
With any repair work, we’ll check and tighten/guarantee 1-4 stones
at no charge. But once we get 5 stones, the additional charge is:
5-20 Stones $25.00
21-35 Stones $35.00
36-50 stones $45.00
The typical store reports they pay out of pocket $3000 to $5000 a
year for lost stones. Typical income from the check and tighten is
$18,000 to $45,000 a year! So don’t be so concerned if you have to
replace stones and you want to blame the customer, that she hit a
door. For every $1.00 you spend to warranty stone loss, you’ll take
in $6 to $9 in income. It’s just a numbers game.
- Offer Express Service
This was our best money maker. We typically promised repairs for
10-14 days. Many customers would say “That long? Why does it take so
long?” Or they might say “I need it back before then.”
Rather than giving excuses, we’d offer our Express Service, which is
the same repair at 50% added in premium. Let’s say a repair is
normally $30 and takes 2 weeks, we’d say:
“We do offer an Express Service. For only $45 we can do this repair
while you wait or within 24 hours. Would you like to see if we can
do this Express for you?”
Most small repairs, sizing, simple solders, retipping, can be done
while they wait. We’d do the 24 hour service if the jeweler was doing
work for someone coming in this afternoon to pick up something they
are working on now. Or we might offer to get it back to them at the
end of the day.
When offered, we found 40% of the customers took us up on the
Express Service, which is 50% higher. We never said to the customer
"we charge 50% more"; rather “it’s only $45 to have it done Express
for you”. It was the highest gross profit procedure we did with the
least complaints. Some folks after we’d offer it would say “You know
what, for the extra money I can wait 2 weeks.” Offer it; you’d be
surprised at how many people will take you up on this.
David S. Geller