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Survey for December and annual sales


#1

Ok, so now let’s see how everyone ended up for December and secondly
how the year as a whole went.

I was down 20% in December (but this is tempered by the fact that I
had the best December in 2006 that I’ve had in 25 years).
Unfortunately, my sales for the year were also off 10%. This is being
currently moderated by the fact that it looks like my January is
going to be far better than usual at the moment (the .90 ct., F
color,
Internally Flawless ideal cut diamond sale I just made has helped
immensely but there has been a lot of other activity of late). So how
have you all done?

Daniel R. Spirer, G.G.
Daniel R. Spirer Jewelers, LLC
1780 Massachusetts Ave.
Cambridge, MA 02140
www.spirerjewelers.com


#2

December down 21%
Year end down only 2%.

Unfortunately we have been on a down trend since the beginning of
2001, and I am not seeing any end in sight. My store is in a small,
“bedroom” community for the auto industry and the middle class is
simply disappearing here. GM just announced buyouts for all their
hourly workforce, replacing $28/hour people with $14/hour employees.
We are rapidly becoming a two-class society, and the wealthy don’t
live here.

Jon Michael Fuja


#3

My sales were up almost 20% in December from 2006. Less show sales,
but lots more commissions and internet sales. For the year, however,
I was down more than 10%, mostly show sales. Again, commissions and
the internet made up part of the shortfall, but not all.

What a good question, Daniel. Having all my data in Quicken made it
amazingly easy to do, but I had never thought of doing that kind of
a comparison. It really made it clear where the trends are and where
I have to improve.

Janet Kofoed
http://users.rcn.com/kkofoed


#4

As an addenda to my own first post on this, I’d like to point out
that despite my sales being off 10% for the year, my profits were
actually UP almost 20% because I recognized the slow down
immediately and altered my spending habits. The advantage of being a
small company is that you can change direction pretty quickly if you
stay on top of things.

Daniel R. Spirer, G.G.
Daniel R. Spirer Jewelers, LLC
1780 Massachusetts Ave.
Cambridge, MA 02140
www.spirerjewelers.com


#5

December up 116%
the year up 60%

Business is growing faster than I can keep up with the workload. I
used to think that would be an enviable problem. But in reality it is
a huge pain. I may be forced to make some difficult decisions.

Neilthejeweler…suburban southwest Connecticut, currently lalaland


#6

Hi Daniel.

For December I did the same as last year.–Not so good.( I don’t
really have a Xmas season on the island)

However, I increased my annual turnover by 45%, so that is good-- I
am three years in my current location, so that was sort-ish of
expected.

BUT, so far, this January to date, I am up 180% on manufacturing.

Lots and lots of original design and commission work.–Freakin’ hard
work, though.

So things are quite good, actually…

Cheers, Hans Meevis.
http://www.meevis.com


#7
Business is growing faster than I can keep up with the workload. 

Raising your prices might help your situation.

KPK


#8

My sales were up 53% for December, BUT, I also spent more on
advertising than I have ever spent before for the year. Also my
profit margin was better, I did not focus on larger items with low
profit went for the low and mid range that had good markup. Last
January was dismall so we thought about closing for 2 weeks this
year, glad we did not, going for a record january so far. The posting
a few weeks ago about Tiffany’s made the season seem bleak, but stuck
way down in the article was this paragraph

Tiffany's U.S. comparable-store sales decline missed the
company's original forecast of a mid-single digit increase, after
a drop in the number of transactions. Total U.S. sales rose 4% to
$449.1 million. Comparable sales are a key retail performance
metric that excludes results from new and closed locations. 

I am not an economist but I read that the sales ROSE to a paltry
449,000,000.00 poor Tiffany’s. It seems to me that the headline
should have been TIFFANY’S SALES UP 4%,outlook is great, but the
media has to print gloom and doom for us to be happy.

Happy Hammering everyone
Bill Wismar
www.metalbendersgallery.com


#9

The year in business was OK. I don’t keep a close eye on percentages,
etc. I live in Santa Fe, actually a half hour north; but my story has
nothing to do with the local economy. We do ‘art fairs’ from San
Francisco & Los Angeles to NYC and Washington DC. We go, as Willie
Sutton said, to where the money is.

At the end of the year I go to Quicken and do a category summary and
leave the rest to our accountant. We’ve paid most of our bills and
have some money to spend in Tucson.

I wish all a successful year and a prayer for peace in the world.

KPK
www.kevinpatrickkelly.com


#10
Raising your prices might help your situation. 

Right on.

I’ve always said that any craftsman who has more work that they can
handle needs to raise their prices. My husbands fav quote is “If you
can’t charge your family and friends, who else can you charge?”

jo


#11

My Christmas season was down 15.5% from last year’s Christmas; while
overall sales were only down 7.1% for the year. I considered that
pretty good considering that I dropped a client at mid-year that
accounted for 25% of my sales for each of the past 3 years. I picked
up new (less stressful) clients to make up most of the loss.

My blood pressure also dropped 20 points on both ends of the
readings, making any loss of revenue seem very worthwhile.

Paul D. Reilly


#12

I realized after I posted this that Willie Sutton may be unknown to
many. Willie Sutton was a celebrated bank robber when that was a more
glamourous profession. Willie was asked why he robbed banks. “It’s
where the money is” he said.


#13
My Christmas season was down 15.5% from last year's Christmas;
while overall sales were only down 7.1% for the year. I considered
that pretty good considering that I dropped a client at mid-year
that accounted for 25% of my sales for each of the past 3 years. 

Yep, I’m sure Paul is referring to the same client I fired a last
year. Had a little bit of an education in Italy as a goldsmith but no
practical skills but that didn’t stop him from crtiqueing one’s work
to death, designing pieces that defied practical construction
techniques, wanting everything the last minute, and an ego the size
of Texas. Sometimes peace of mind is worth the loss in income.

Rick Copeland
www.csms.us


#14
..... headline should have been TIFFANY'S SALES UP 4%, outlook is
great.....

Ditto! This year has been my best year, and Christmas, in several
years. 18 months ago, we changed from a very busy one man/ one wife
shop to a 4 person shop that is busier now than ever. Keep in mind,
my shop is located in one of those supposedly ‘dying’ rustbelt towns
of America. But believe me, it doesn’t have to be that way.

Make yourself different from the others in your area.Watch and
jewelry repair is a great way to do that, and it leads the way for
most people who walk in my door the 1st time, but sales of finished
goods as well as a pretty consistent flow of mountings, light custom,
etc… has continued to grow thru out this year. Purchasing scrap has
been real good all year, too.

So far, I 'll have to say I need more data - alot more data, before
I’ll be convinced by the mainstream media about how bad it is
everywhere.

Ed


#15
My sales were up 53% for December....the headline should have been
TIFFANY'S SALES UP 4%,outlook is great, but the media has to print
gloom and doom for us to be happy. 

While watching a “news” editorial program on TV the other day, one
of the panelists pointed out that the economy is growing normally,
but people have become convinced that we are heading into a
recession, entirely due to the way economic news is being presented
by the media. Describing Tiffany’s healthy 4% income growth as a
"decline" because it was not the projected 6% is a typical example,
repeated in almost every market segment. I wonder how many
"recessions" we have endured that had nothing to do with economic
conditions, but which were solely the product of propaganda?

To return to topic, my faceted gems business is abysmal, but rough
gem sales are doing very well indeed this season.

Steve McQueen
gemsevermore.com