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Show Dealers vrs Internet


All, At Tucson 2000 many dealers put forth the idea that the Internet
negatively impacted sales and show attendance. I was surprised that
the idea was so commonly held by so many. My business cards
indicated only my website, phone number, mailing address, and
products. Many customers were Internet connected and of foreign
nationality. Dealing in Tucson allowed me to expand my business
through the Internet. Does anyone else have any thoughts on this.
Gerry Galarneau,
Galarneau’s Gems


Gerry, I am sorry that I missed meeting you. In my travels around
Tucson, and personal conversations with Dealers I have known over the
years, they believe the shows are too stretched out over too many days
(mineral and fossils). The jewelry, gemstone, and component dealers
felt there were too many new venues and spread the customers too

I did not hear complaints about Internet. Some things need to be seen
and felt before buying. Internet may in the future trim down the
number of dealers, but many buyers and customers need to “be there” to
feel they have gotten the best available, and their money’s worth, as
well as that bargain no one else knows about.

Internet will not replace the atmosphere. IMHO Teresa


I’ve wondered about that, too. Is their attitude based on actual
statistics, personal observation, or a kind of stubborn resistance to
(or fear of) internet technology or the personal computer in general?
After all, not everybody is able to attend the Tucson shows, but
through the internet we can gain access to many of the dealers we
might otherwise have missed, provided they have websites. I-commerce
is still pretty young. At the beginning of the last century, when a
car broke down in the street, it was common for the pedestrian
public to holler, “Get a horse!” Well, the same thing probably applies

The internet ain’t goin’ away, folks. We might just as well learn to
live with it and make the best of it. Dee


Hi, I live in Tucson and have been doing the show for years, it seems
to grow, there are more promoters and more locations every year. This
year the show seemed to loose its feel. I was very surprised by some
of the pricing, what I had bought the year before had quadrupled its
price, and example, pearls, I usually try and buy a couple of kilos of
them to see through the 6 months that I have to wait around for it to
come back, there is nothing like picking them out in person! well I
was shocked, the same pearl, not better nor worst off was 2400 a kilo
when last year I bought them for 600 a kilo. Same supplier too. I had
bought some pretty 9mm-11mm potatos for 24 a strand and this year they
were 89.00. strange.

Anyway back to my idea on the show. I heard off and on at the show
that they were thinking of doing it at the Pima County Fair
Grounds…I know this is wishful thinking on everyones part, because
that would cut out some promoters and kill their shows but it would be
much nicer for the seller and for ourselves because we could find our
seller at the only show in town.

It is really unfortunate for the sellers, because they get nickled
and dimed by having to be in multiple places and some of them move
around to 5 shows! That is very expensive! plus it makes it hard on
the customer. It would be nice, but I don’t see it happening the
promoters would be screaming and kicking

Anyway Hi everyone!


Were these fresh water? I think (personal opinion) that the fresh
water have become very popular, because they are inexpensive, and
maybe the dealers figure they can now up the price, to make them more
exclusive like the salt water.

Or is you are talking Salt Water…maybe the dealers decided that
they should be even more exclusive because of the low cost of f/w??

Just off my head.


Biggest problem I have found at the trade shows is that ma kettle
takes little abners tax I.D. from bubbas gas station and bbq to get
into the show. And the dealers are uping their prices to retail as a
result. I have found that if I tell the dealers listen up this is the
wholesale show and I am a seriuos buyer lets stop the crap that the
prices change dramatically.

my 2 cents worth - lucile


Laura, I’m not sure of the details but, the price of pearls is much
higher this year due to natural weather disasters and pollution which
affected production. Susan (@Susan_Hoge)


Actually I prefer that my suppliers use keystone retail prices at
shows because I know that too many shows let people who are not
legitimately in the trade in. It is important that YOU carry proper
id on you so that the suppliers will know that you are legitimate.
There is nothing I hate worse than getting a customer in my shop who
went to some “trade show” and paid the same price I would for

Daniel R. Spirer, GG
Spirer Somes Jewelers
1794 Massachusetts Ave.
Cambridge, MA 02140


Ahh, well that would make sense, I asked and asked and no one would
tell me or could tell me why they were so much more expensive.

I decided not to buy stock because of that, it is very hard to
educate the masses about a price increase of 4 fold.



Yeah, there are some labor-intensive types that come to the shows.
One never knows if they are just there to kill time, or if the next
Carl Faberge is starting up any way he can. Take each case as they
arrive at your booth, smile, and on to the next client. Keep your
books well, get ID’s on checks, run all credit cards immediately.
Never let 'em see you sweat.

Maybe offer a (sales tax)% discount for copy of valid tax ID given
with the sales made at the show.

Dan Woodard, Indian Jewelers Supply Co.


Daniel, I would have to agree with you that having the prices at
retail is probably a better way to go at shows. There is just no way
to keep the public out of most shows. Furthermore, the realities of
the marketplace are such that it is not so much a matter of whether a
person is a retailer or consumer; it is the quantity that you buy
that most often determines the price that you will pay. To complicate
things further, you may have noted that the major supply companies
are very lax about verifying who they are dealing with. You can get
their catalogs simply by falsifying your commercial status and , in
other cases, they really don’t give a damn…they’ll sell to whomever
has the cash! Recently we attended a Gem Faire show in Santa Barbara
and, as most of you know, they are open to the public. No matter; we
were there to replenish our stock of Freshwater Pearls and, after
perusing the copious displays of the many bead dealers in
attendance,we went to the large display of the Oriental merchant with
whom we have dealt in the past. We found exactly what we wanted and
simply handed him the two full hanks of top quality potato pearls and
asked him to give us his best price. We bought them at one third of
the asking price. The man was delighted to be able to sell fifty
strands at once as opposed to quibbling with little old ladies who
haggle over the price of one strand while expecting to be romanced
for a half hour! And, contrary to the experience of the Orchidian in
Tucson who paid four times as much, we paid less than we paid last
year for the same goods. The references to increased pearl prices are
valid insofar as Japanese cultured pearls are concerned; the pearl
oysters have a virus which has wrought havoc with production. On the
other hand, the real virus is the impact of Chinese freshwater pearl
production…freshwater pearls can now be had in rounds that rival
the finest cultured pearls and the prices are substantially lower.
Moreover, the customer appeal of top quality potato pearls ,selling
for ten per-cent or less of the cultured pearl prices, invariably
impacts consumer choices! We have found it increasingly more
difficult to sell consigned cultured pearls, even at greatly reduced
prices. "The moving finger writes, and having written, moves
on…! Ron at Mills Gem, Los Osos, CA.