I’ve been in the jewelry industry for over 34 years. I’ve been training, educating, and teaching employees and staff the fine art of selling jewelry and diamonds for a long time and I’ve been loving every minute of it.
While the diamond business has evolved over the years, and customers are more knowledgeable about diamonds and certification than ever before. The core principles of sales remain the same; treat the customers with professionalism, educate them, give them quality merchandise, impressive customer service, and it will hold priority over anything else. It can make a sale or walk the customer to the competitor down the street.
It’s your choice.
Either way, you’ll have to work hard for what you want. it’s all part of the game.
You see, sales are exciting. There’s nothing else like it. The adrenaline high you get from a great sales presentation is incredible. Customers feel this as well. They love it and trust me, it works. Enthusiasm is contagious.
Interacting with people is something that no online jeweler can do as effectively. Consumers still like to window shop. They still like to hold the merchandise, try it on, experience it. It’s a jewelry thing. Seeing diamond’s glistening in person… Nothing else compares. You can’t sell that. It’s free.
In fact, people don’t want to be sold, but they do want to buy.
If you’re new to sales, or have been around the block, you’ll know that it takes years to learn about diamonds, gold, gemstones and jewelry. It doesn’t happen overnight. You soak it all in and educate yourself over the life of your career. Look at me, I’m still learning…
It takes drive, determination, a desire to learn everything you can about your product, service, company and customers. It’s trust. Clientele will reward you with loyalty that extends beyond sales. You will build friendships that are near and dear to your heart.
Working in a jewelry store is a wonderful profession that holds admiration and great pride. I enjoy everything about it. It’s a pretty priceless journey.
Needless to say, I’ve picked up a few pointers along the way. :)
So I thought I’d pass some of these onto you. I’m sure there are literally thousands of tricks and tips you could learn, but the initial training below (very long post), will get you started on the right path to selling jewelry, and more importantly, selling diamond engagement rings. That’s where the real money lies. When you learn to sell diamonds, you can sell just about anything.
A refrigerator to an Eskimo? You got it. :)
I call this jewelry sales training 101
So grab yourself a coffee and a donut (it’s only 14,000 words long).
let’s dig in…
To sell a million bucks, you have to look like a million bucks. Seriously. It will be hard for you to sell an $8,000 wedding set if you are unshaven, have stains on your tie, or are chewing gum like it’s going out of style. It just doesn’t work.
When you’re selling luxury items, you must step up your attire and dress accordingly. The way you present yourself is half the battle. You want to dress to impress. No slouching. No scuffed shoes. No holes in your sleeves… Customers notice things like this and it’s a big turn off. Spend the money to dress like you own it and it’ll repay you handsomely. :)
P.S. Guys wear a red tie… Red ties are power ties.
Know your merchandise
If someone asks: “Do you have any promise rings?” “Do you have tension sets in your inventory?” “I’m looking for an interlocking wedding set…”
Will you be able to help them? You will if you know your merchandise. Knowing what you have on hand will save you time and money. You’ll make many more sales if you can lead them right to what they want and show them. It’s true. Become familiar with what you have.
“Do you have this in white gold?” “Do you have any solitaires that are F color?“
Really. Go through your stock and look at the tags. Learn where things are. It will help you compare stones as well. “Let me show you what a diamond with Strong Fluorescence looks like.”
Upgrade. Sell more. Scope your diamonds. Microscope the stones and really look at them. Understand them. See what makes them tick. Learn where all the tools are in your store. Diamond tweezers? Polishing cloth? Warranty plan? Knowing where things are will keep you from looking silly and running around like your head is cut off. Become familiar with the merchandise on hand and you’ll look like a pro when someone says “I’m looking for an anniversary ring with exactly 8 diamonds.“.
Clean the goods.
I’ve actually heard a customer say to a salesperson before “Is this ring used? There are fingerprints all over it.”
The point is, you can’t show and sell a ring that is dirty, dusty, has sticky tag glue all over the shank, or has fingerprints on the stones. Just like it would be much harder to sell a brand new car that was covered in mud; clean your jewelry.
Keep a polishing cloth near the cases. When you’re not waiting on customers, clean and polish the merchandise (this also keeps you on the floor, and makes you look attentive and welcoming to customers coming in).
Get the fingerprints off the goods. And trust me, there will be fingerprints. Clean the goods. Make sure the tags are still attached and readable. If not, print some new ones. Tuck the tags under the rings and make sure the rings are sticking straight up in the trays. Not leaning over, you want those diamonds showing and shining.
Make the merchandise look clean and presentable. Make it look like quality. P.S. If the lights are out in your showcases or overhead, replace them or get them fixed. You can’t show diamonds in the dark. :)
This is a big pet peeve of mine. Break up the huddles. This isn’t football. Nothing’s worse than when you walk into a store (any store) and all the employees are huddled together. And when you walk in, they stop chatting and all look you at the same time. What a horrible feeling. Like you’re on display. Waiting to be pounced on. Not cool.
Employees should never group together (hold your meetings before the store opens). They should be spread apart and appear like they’re working… Polishing merchandise, straightening items, cleaning glass… casually waiting for a customer to help. Don’t huddle around the door and pounce on people the second they walk in.
And above all else… Don’t shout out across the room “I’ll be right with you.“
Everyone that enters your store should be greeted. Everyone. A nice warm and proper greeting just to let them know that you see them and you know they’re there. Just like you would if someone were to enter your home, you would welcome them and extend an invitation inside with open arms. Welcome customers. Smile. Don’t pounce. Just a friendly “Welcome” will do as they start to mingle around the cases.
And if everyone is busy, still acknowledge them gently. Let them know that everyone is busy and somebody will be with them shortly. Customers appreciate this and understand. But they don’t like to be ignored or felt like they’re invisible. “It’ll just be a minute…” is all you need.
Give customers space.
Don’t jump on customers like they’re a mouse in a trap. Give them time to enter the store and soak it all in. Let them browse for a minute. Let their eyes get adjusted. You can say “Hi” to them and make them feel welcome. Tell them that “I’ll be right over here when you need me.” that goes a long way.
And when you say “I’ll be right over here…“, be prepared to wait on them when they do want it. Watch them. They’ll give you signs when they’re ready. They’ll either stop at a case and start pointing or leaning forward, or they’ll start looking around for you, a visual clue that they are now ready to be waited on.
Be close at hand, but give them the space they need to feel comfortable.
Here’s a good rule of thumb: assume everyone who walks in the door has enough money to buy anything they wanted.
This will make you so much more in commissions if you just wait on everyone equally with the same attention to detail and the same sales presentation.
Don’t cut them short or brush them off. I grew up on a farm. I know this for a fact. Farmers have money, they just don’t always show it. Don’t judge people by the way they dress, by the way they comb their hair, by the way they talk, the hat they wear, how their teeth look, by the piercings on their eyebrows, by the holes in their shoes… You don’t know them. Don’t judge.
You don’t know if they have money or not. They could be loaded and you wouldn’t even know it. You could certainly miss out on an opportunity to gain a customer for life, just by ignoring your very own first impressions. You’re not here to judge, you’re here to sell.
No matter what they look like, how they act, or what they say… they all have the same color of money: green. Just remember that.
“I’m just looking”
Sales people will get this phrase a lot if you ask people “Is there something I can help you with?” the “I’m just looking” is a classic follow up line. Even if they are looking for a particular item, they will still shoot you down. Give them space. Let them find what they want and be ready to assist them when they are ready to put their wall down.
If you casually say hi and friendly welcome people into your store, you probably won’t get much “I’m just looking” lines. People blurt this out automatically and it can quickly derail a salesperson who doesn’t know how to handle it.
Some sales people take this as attitude and stick their noses up, but it’s not the thing to do. “I’m looking” is a normal response from anyone who walks into the store. As customers, we hate to be sold. We hate to be pounced on. We always feel like we’re nothing more than a wallet…
Understand this and accept it. You’ll get rejected many times. You just have to allow it and let it roll off your shoulders. Smile, allow them to “look”. Use the same non-pressuring statement as earlier “Please, feel free. I’ll be right over here when you need me.”
Remaining calm and cool will go a long, long way.
I love finding out if it’s the customer’s first time shopping. “Have you been anywhere else looking?” this info can help you greatly.
If I know they’re been all over town shopping for an engagement ring, then I know they haven’t found exactly what they’re looking for… yet. I know that I have a pretty good chance of making a sale if I can help them get what they so desire. I just have to figure out what it is.
A better price?
A GIA certified princess cut diamond with E color?
Interest free financing for 12 months?
What kept them from purchasing already?
Your job is to find out what their buttons are and push them. They’ve been everywhere looking and are still looking. They’re tired. Worn down. Their ring search is turning into a chore. Make this a happy time for them. Make them see that they’ve finally come to the right place. You’ll take good care of them. :)
I also know that if it’s their first time shopping, I better cover all the grounds. I better leave such an impression on them, that they will come back and buy from me after they search all the other competitors. This is not an easy feat. You really have to be on your a-game.
Customers don’t like to buy from the first place they shop. Be ready and give them the best deal you can, because everyone else will be undercutting you (or trying to).
Either way, knowing how many places they’ve been to can really help you and make selling fun.
And I know if I treat them right, have a good time, and give them one hell of a deal, they’ll remember me and compare everyone else to me. :)
Shake their name out of them.
What’s the first thing you do when you’re out with a bunch of friends and they are introducing you to people you don’t know? You exchange names and shake hands. Don’t forget this little detail.
The people you meet today may be your customers for life. Get to know them. Get their name and repeat it back to them. Use it during the sales presentation… But use it casually so it doesn’t sound forced. “Mr. Scott, let me ask you a question. Does your fiancée have other rings that she wears on the same hand?”
I would not use the customer’s first name, unless they tell you too. “You can call me James” “Thanks, James. I’m Richard. nice to meet you. My father’s name was also James, and he never liked to be called anything else, like Jim or Jimmy, it was always James.” :)
Names are a good place to start.
Oh, and no limp handshakes. A firm grip is absolutely required. :)
Look them in the eye
When you communicate with someone look them in the eye.
If you can’t look them in the eye as you talk, or you divert your eyes away, you’ll look like you’re hiding something and customers won’t trust you.
Looking someone in the eye says ‘I’m being honest with you’, ‘I know what I’m talking about’, ‘I’m sincere’, and ‘I want you to see that’.
Eye contact is important.
Build trust with them and look them eye to eye.
Features and benefits
Features and benefits are crucial to a sales presentation. You have to think like a customer “What’s in it for me?“
If you give a feature about an item “This diamond has v-tipped prongs”, then you must tell the customer why that matters to them. Otherwise it’s a useless feature.
“V-tips are where the points of your diamond (the weakest part of the stone) are covered with metal that bends around those vulnerable tips, and they not only protect them from chipping or breaking, but it will also help accentuate those defined edges that enhances the overall shape of the diamond.”
It’s telling them what something is, and why it matters to them.
“This ring has channel set diamonds in it” So? “The channels give the ring a nice, smooth appearance that protects the stones, holds them in securely, and won’t get caught on your clothing.”
See how that works? Now I understand why that feature is great and it’s something that I need and want. :)
Read more about features and benefits here.
Close a lot!
“Do you want to wear the ring out?” “Will that be cash or charge?” “How about we set up financing and get the ball rolling?” “Do you want to take it home today?”
Close, close, close, always close the sale. If you don’t ask for the sale, you won’t make very many of them.
Closing the sale is getting them to say “Yes. I will take it.“
It can be subtle as well… “When are you going to give it to her?” Feel them out. See what they are thinking. Gently push them towards the goal.
“Do you want us to gift wrap this?“
“You like the piece. You want the piece. Just take it and enjoy it. You deserve it.”
“How about you put a deposit on this and pay for the rest when you pick it up?”
“Take the ring and wear it. If for any reason you decide you don’t want it, just bring it back. We have a 90 day money-back guarantee. It’s that simple.”
Pace the customers
Pace the customer. Mirror them. If they are moving slow and talking steady, don’t rush them or talk rapidly. You’ll scare them off. Go at their own pace.
Mimic how they converse. Their rate of their speech. Their gestures. Are they leaning forward? Looking intensely? Are they going over all the dots and details?
Or, are they are chatting fast and furious? Pointing out this ring and that? They could be in a dash during lunch. Keeping up with them will seem normal then and not awkward or out of sync.
Are they happy-happy? Calm and deliberate? Steady and laughing? Quiet and reserved?
Knowing how to slow it down or speed it up will make things go more smoothly.
Notice body language
Read what their body is saying. The way they are posed. The way they carry themselves say a lot. Are they acting interested? Leaning forward? Are their arms closed? Standing back? Are they mesmerized by the diamonds? Is there a smile on her face? Is the guy quiet and making the hand to the neck gesture at me? The body can say a lot if you learn how to read it.
Get customers to open up. Come into the presentation. Get their arms apart and uncrossed. Get them laughing and interested. Calm down their racing heart.
Are they tapping with their fingers on the glass? Are they looking around nervously? Are they sweating like crazy?
Noticing things like this will help you interact with them better. Loosen them up. Make them feel as ease. “Everyone feels this way.” Help them make a decision to get past the buying burden.
I use the look on a woman’s face to my advantage. When they’re looking at diamonds and he says to her “Would you be happy with this stone?” Of course she’ll say ‘Yes’. But… When I bring out a bigger, brighter stone, her face will light up. “Look at the smile on her face. She’s grinning from ear to ear” I’ll say. “That’s what she really wants.”
Use their body language to tailor the presentation and help make a sale. :)
Be knowledgeable. Knowledge brings confidence.
“What is a natural?” “Why does this diamond cost more than this one?” “What’s the difference between white gold and platinum?“
Questions like this will come often. You have to be ready. The best way to be ready… Know your product and explain it in confidence.
If you know what you’re talking about, the answers will roll off the tip of your tongue. If you don’t know it, you’ll hesitate, pause, answer incorrectly, or have to go ask someone else. That doesn’t come across very good. It breaks up the pace of a sales presentation and brings uneasy doubt. It can kill a sale very quickly.
If this ‘not knowing‘ happens a lot, customers will want to deal with someone else who does know their merchandise better, who does know what they’re talking about, and who is much more confident in selling. And more than likely, that will be your competitor.
No one wants to buy from someone who is unsure and lacks confidence.
Learn your product inside and out.
You do want to make a sale, don’t you?
Use the scope Luke
You want to know what my favorite line is in my engagement ring presentation? “Have you ever seen what a diamond looks like under a microscope?“
Seriously, it is.
You know why? Because chances are, no matter how many different jewelry stores they’ve been to, the customer will respond with “No.”
I find this shocking. Really I do.
Not one person has shown them diamonds under a scope before???
I love this (the competitors must hate it)… because once I show customers the diamond close-up, once I compare stones, show them the different qualities and clarities, I’ve got them hooked. I’m teaching them why one stone is better than another. I’m showing them and telling them. This is why they should buy this diamond versus another. This is why they should buy it from me.
Use the scope in every diamond presentation. Customers should see under the hood before they buy. It builds confidence. It builds trust. They know what they are buying. And chances are, they’ll never shop anywhere else again.
If you don’t use the microscope to your benefit, you’re losing out big time.
Show them the diamond. It’s fascinating. People love to see them closer. You will sell far more better quality diamonds this way. It’s the coolest thing.
I get giddy when I take customers into the diamond room. I know at that moment, I’m probably going to be making a sale… They don’t know it yet, but I do. :)
Sell the extras
Use your warranties and policies to help sell your goods. Diamond guarantees, service plans, 90 days same as cash… anything that you have to offer as a company that will help the customer out, sell it.
“We have a service plan, that covers the mounting for a lifetime… That way, if you ever need any work done on the mounting, need the prongs re-tipped, want to get it polished or cleaned or even resized, it’ll be covered for free for lifetime.” (notice how I gave the feature and benefit?)
Sell your diamond guarantees. Does the mounting come with a manufacturer’s warranty? What happens if the diamond falls out? What’s your upgrade policy? Exchange policy? Return policy? Sell it.
Do you offer interest free financing? Layaway? Do you have locations all across the country? Sell it.
“We’re members of the BBB, and have an excellent customer service rating on Google Reviews.” “We’ve been around for over 100 years. Generations of customers have shopped here.” “We have our own repair shop in the back so we don’t have to ship your ring out to Texas to get it fixed.”
Sell, sell, sell what you got.
Clean their jewelry
This is a good way to get around the “I’m just looking” speel… “How about I clean your jewelry while you look around?”
Customers always want their jewelry and diamonds cleaned and sparkling. Who wouldn’t?
Offer to clean them… “It’s free to clean, and I’ll double check that your diamonds and prongs are tight and secure.” People love this.
Cleaning their jewelry does a couple of smart things: 1) it keeps them in the store longer. 2) it frees up their fingers for trying on rings. 3) it gives you an opportunity to inspect their pieces and make sure everything is safe and secure.
Often I’ll find broken prongs, loose stones, a bent ring, and even missing stones. Look over their items. Scope them if you have to. Check them out well. It’s all part of the service that jewelry stores offer. Plus, it’ll make you look good. Customers will be happy that their goods are cleaned and inspected and that any future problems are avoided (unlike the other jewelers who just are lazy and don’t care).
Just don’t forget that their items are in the cleaner… You don’t want your customers walking out of the store without them. :)
No one likes a grump. Leave your attitude at home. Put on a happy face and be open and friendly towards customers.
Chit-chat, laugh, build rapport, just be a friend to them. You can still sell and sell great without all the high pressure tactics.
Treat them like your friends and family. Don’t worry about making a sale. Just make friends. The sales will happen naturally and effortlessly. :)
Plus, you can get customers to do just about anything if you’re smiling and laughing with them. :)
Don’t slam the competition
Don’t slam competitors. Need I say more?
All this does is make you sound bitter and look bad. Don’t beat the competition up with what they sell, offer, or do… “They are mean to their customers.” “Their warranties suck.” “They’ll rip you off.” Instead, show the customers what you have and what you offer.
“We have a service plan as well. Ours covers your mounting for a lifetime.” :)
What you offer speaks volumes.
Trust me, there’s enough customers and sales to go around. :)
Watch the fake.
“That’s a cute sweater.” “I like your hair.” “This ring looks good on your fingers.”
If it sounds fake, no one will buy it. Customers know if you’re trying too hard. They know if their sweater is old and stained, it’s not cute. They know their blue-mohawk isn’t going to impress anyone. They know that the little itty-bitty ring looks out of place on their hands”, they know it.
If you compliment something or someone, make sure it’s sincere.
I know a sales person that made a compliment on a lady’s watch before (cheap gaudy watch) “Oh how pretty.” She half smiled. What she didn’t know was that when she turned around, the husband saw her roll her eyes in the mirror. Not cool.
You can see through fake smiles. People know when you’re pouring it on too thick. They’ll know if you’re just saying it to say it and not really meaning it.
Don’t try to fool them. They know.
Believe it or not, but many people will buy from you, because of you.
They buy because they like you and trust you. You have what they want. They enjoyed working with you. They appreciate your time and will definitely be back in the future to see you and buy more.
Customers get loyal when it comes to sales people. They are more willing to spend a little extra if they like the person. They will go out of their way, drive longer distances, and refer others to you, if you make a difference to them.
I make it a point to be myself, make customers laugh and smile and want to come back again and again. They come back to see me. They ask for me by name. Customers will follow you for life. Even if you move from jeweler to jeweler, your customers will come with you.
They know you. They like you. You make the difference.
Let them get to know the real you.
Show the 4c’s.
The fundamentals of selling diamonds are the 4c’s.
Learn them well and explain them effortlessly.
The are the bread and butter of engagement rings.
Showing the 4c’s chart (you should have a professional looking, laminated chart handy), is important in every single sales presentation. Even if it’s just to quickly touch on the basics with them so they can see where the quality of goods you are showing them fall.
If you don’t show the 4c’s, you’re missing out on a lot of opportunities to upgrade and sell bigger and better items.
Go over cut, color, clarity and carat weight. Tell them, and show them what they mean.
“These are what visible inclusions in an I clarity diamond look like…”
“Notice how white and bright a colorless diamond is compared to this lower color stone”
“Even though this diamond is smaller in carat weight, it faces up the same as a bigger stone because the diamond is spread. it appears larger. so you could buy the smaller stone, not spend the extra cash, and keep your money in your bank where it belongs.” :)
If you learn anything, make it the 4c’s. It’s the backbone of diamonds and a must if you want to sell.
Justify the price
If you relate the price of the item to what they get out of it, or compare it to other items, it doesn’t seem so bad.
After all, you can put $8,000 into a diamond ring that will last you a lifetime. Literally, you will wear it every single day for the rest of your life. Break that down into 30-40-50 or 60 years and what does it come out to be? Not much… compared to buying a car today for $30,000 that in 10 years will be worth very little.
Justify the price so it makes sense to the customers.
This service plan is only $25. That’s the price of just getting just 2 prongs re-tipped. Two. So for the same price as the plan, you could get all of them re-tipped, get it sized, polished, soldered to her wedding band, and anything else that happens to the ring… Get my drift?
Why does this diamond cost so much? Because diamonds last forever. You couldn’t put that kind of money into anything else in your life and have it last you half as long. Look at how much you spend on clothing. Look at how much you spend going out to eat, or to the movies… Any item that you buy today will only last you so long.
Appliances last around 20 years and you’re out buying new ones. But this diamond will look brand new forever. It doesn’t scratch, wear down, or erode. It will look brand new your entire life. What else can you spend money on that in 80 years from now will look exactly like it did the day you bought it? Nothing.
Cars fall apart. Clothes wear down. Material items get thrown out and replaced. But not this diamond. It will be here forever and get passed down from generation to generation.
And that’s worth every penny. It’s here to stay… Just like love, just like marriage. :)
What’s the best way to sell diamonds? Compare them.
Show customers the differences (under a scope, of course) of one diamond to the next. Show them the different clarities and colors. Let them see them for themselves.
Have some diamonds ready that help make great comparisons. I know exactly where our brilliant cut solitaire is with I color. I use it and show it often. Customers can quickly understand color if they can see the color.
I go right to the I2 clarity diamond ring when I want to compare clarity. That way they know what inclusions are and it all clicks. They see I clarity flaws up against an SI, VS, or VVS. It opens their eyes. You can hear people gasp when they see the differences. It’s that impressive, and it works like a charm.
Compare diamonds so people understand the 4c’s. You’ll see your sales go up. :)
Teach as much as they want to learn
One thing you’ll learn quickly is that some customers want to learn everything, and others don’t really care.
Some people are fine with learning the 4c’s in 4 minutes. You can go over them, point out a couple of things on the chart and they’re good to go.
But some people, some people want an entire diamond certification course in 3 hours. They want to look at every dot, microscope every detail, analyze each stone… They want to study the diamond report and write everything down… they will work you. :)
Going between these two types of customers is a nice balance. But the bottom line is, you have to learn to read the customer and figure out how much they want to learn. Their questions, responses, and body language will alert you. Are they interested? Are they asking for more?
Listen and watch. The customers will ask for more info, or they will pull back and be perfectly fine with what they get. If you teach them more than they want, they will overload and want to bolt out the door. Their face, body, and voice will direct you. Learn to watch for customer signals, and don’t give them more than they ask for.
A good part of being a jewelry salesperson is learning inventory control. Watching the merchandise and watching out for theft and shoplifting.
It happens (more now then ever). There are a lot of pros out there that can swap out a diamond ring in the blink of an eye. Would you know?
I find the best way to prevent theft is by slowing down the inventory exchange. Don’t just hand out ring after ring and try to figure out how many rings you have out at one time. Hand out 1 ring at a time. No more. Unless you are comparing two rings, then always keep one hand on one of the rings. Don’t hand over everything. And don’t pull out an entire tray of goods for the customers to pick through (this scares me).
Before you hand an item over to the customer, take a second to polish the ring up with a polishing cloth (chat while you do so). Wipe off any fingerprints, and at the same time, glance down at the ring ticket, notice the carat weights and quality… You’ll need that info to talk about the ring as they’re trying it on anyway. How awkward is it to keep flipping her hand over to read the ticket???
When they hand you back the ring, glance at the item and the ticket again. make sure you got your ring back. Tuck the tag in and set it properly back in the showcase. This shows customers that you are aware of your merchandise, what you hand out and what you get back. It will make them think twice about trying an old switcharoo.
Other things that I have seen stores do, diamond test every diamond. Some criminals will actually switch out an entire ring, your ring for a fake one, and hand it back to you while pointing and tapping at another ring to see… “Can I see that one?” They are sneaky. They know how to misdirect you and cause confusion to deceive.
Some stores really do diamond test every stone when they hand it out and when they get it back. I would guarantee you that this would avert many potential rip offs (even though it’s probably a big pain).
Other things you can do to control your items… use a place mat.
Using a place mat will force the customers to concentrate on just that ring that you have out at the time. Some sales people also put the ring on a display ring stick so the customers can hold it. The place mat does a good job of covering up the rest of the items in the case so customers don’t lose attention and start looking away. It keeps them focused on that one particular ring and keeps you focused on getting that ring back.
Be alert and aware of your surroundings and merchandise. Close the case after you pull a ring out. Don’t leave doors open for prying hands to reach into. I’ve seen little kids reach in and swipe a ring while their parents point to another ring at the front of the next case. It’s all diversion. Don’t look away.
Keep a watchful eye out for people that want to steal. Control the presentation and control the inventory.
Don’t let it happen to you.
Loose diamond’s fly
Do you know how easy it is to switch out a loose certified diamond? It would only take seconds. Seriously.
When you’re showing loose stones, be extra careful and cautious. It’s too easy to be pointing out clarity and color on the certificate and having a customer swap out the stone for a lower quality stone or a fake stone. It can happen that fast.
Even if you have the diamond locked in locking tweezers, it’s too easy to unhook it and grab a different stone. Keep your eyes open. Customers could steal a $10,000 diamond and set a $2,000 diamond in it’s place.
Something else to watch out for: flying diamonds.
When customers hold tweezers, they are not very good at it. Often the stone will come loose, fall out, or go flying across the room. I’ve seen this happen to salespeople (including myself). Diamonds are round and slippery, it’s easy to do. Watch and be prepared.
I’ve had stones fly out and land in the carpet before, and have had 4 people on the ground searching for it. Not cool. Anybody could swap out a stone or replace it with a crappy one. You have to be alert and keep a watchful eye out for switching, swapping and flying stones.
Diamonds are small, watch them like a hawk.
Clean loose diamonds.
Before you take the customer over to the microscope to view diamonds close-up… clean the stone.
You must do this.
Dirt, dust and fingerprints mar a diamond and make the stone look like there’s inclusions and flaws inside. It gets pretty embarrassing when you’re showing an internally flawless diamond and the customers see a big line in the stone (hair), or a huge oily fingerprint on the table.
Clean the stone before you microscope it, especially certified ones. Steam clean the stone to remove any debris, because you only get one shot at showing off that diamond and showing the customers how clean it is under 10x magnification.
Every thing shows up.
Clean it and clean it good. It’s the only way to sell loose diamonds.
This goes without saying, respect others. Treat customers with respect. No cursing. No dirty jokes. No offending. No racial remarks… DUH!
Treat people with professionalism and mind your manors.
It doesn’t matter how well you know these people, or how open you want to become. You are in a business setting and are selling a company’s expensive merchandise. Treat it as such and it will reward you.
Act like your mother is watching. lol
Don’t talk them out of a sale
If the customer wants an item bad. Sell it to them. No matter the quality, no matter the price, if that’s what they really want, don’t stand in their way.
I’ve seen salespeople talk customers out of a sale because they wanted to up sale the client. They wanted the customer to buy an SI1 diamond instead of the SI2. “It’s only $400 more, and the inclusions are microscopic only. With the SI2 you can see flaws just by looking at the stone. Your girlfriend will see those and think you bought a low grade diamond.”
While it may sound good to you (I’ll make them buy the better stone)… The customer may be thinking, “I have a budget. I need to stick within my budget and no more. I like the SI2, but they’re making it sound like a bad choice….”
It’s too easy to persuade people and push people away from what you don’t like. For what ever reason, you must listen to what the customer wants and what they are saying.
You’ll know if you’re pushing them away. Trust me. You can feel this. Don’t talk them out of a sale, unless you just don’t want to make any sales…
Turn negatives positive.
Every ring and every diamond has both good qualities and bad qualities to them. Your job is to push the good quality and smooth over the bad ones.
Don’t lie about anything, but don’t disregard them either. You do want to mention both the bad and the good.
Not mentioning these things is hiding them from the customers. It’s not good and will come back and bite you in the rear.
If a diamond has low diamond color, point it out. “This diamond has J color, which means it has a little yellow hue in the stone. The good thing is, if you set this stone into a yellow gold mounting, it will hide that color and not make it stand out as much. Plus, buying a diamond with J color will actually save you hundreds of dollars. Not bad for something that most people would never even notice.” :)
See how you can talk about it and still make it sound positive? (also notice how I threw in the feature and benefit?)
I wrote a whole article about selling diamonds that you may enjoy reading: I’m here to sell you a diamond. It’s a good read and goes into more detail and info about how to turn a negative aspect into a good one.
Avoid future problems
Have you had problems with invisible set stones? I have. I’ve seen rings come in all the time from customers that have had stones fall out of these types of settings.
While I love the look and feel of these rings, I don’t like how unhappy people get when we tell them we can’t fix them, the ring has to sent back to the manufacturer to be repaired, and that could take up to 6 weeks and be pretty pricey. :(
As sad as this sounds, it’s the truth. I don’t advise anyone buying invisible settings, and I’ll be the first person to tell you my opinion on them (unless that’s what you really want).
This isn’t to say that people buy invisible set diamonds all the time and have been wearing them for years with no problems. I’m sure there are good ones out there and some people do get lucky. But I’m just passing on my own personal opinion. Take it or leave it.
I’m being honest with people and averting future problems. I would rather steer people into better quality goods that they won’t have issues with… But, if they really want an invisible set mounting, I’ll sell it. Just as long as they know to be extra careful with them and get them checked often.
I’m also leery about tension set mountings. Stones get bumped and come loose all the time. I’ve also seen people chip their stones easier in settings like these. But they are still highly popular.
I would not be doing any justice to the customer if I didn’t mention these things during a sales presentation. I’m not talking them out of a sale, I’m just warning them about some problems that may arise.
Same with rings that have tons and tons of prongs. I talk about the prongs and how they could get caught more often, snagged, and need to be re-tipped (expensive).
If you know a particular item, whether it’s a ring, mounting, bracelet, watch, whatever, has problems. bring it up. Customers will thank you. And you may just gain a customer’s trust for life. :)
Up sale and upgrade
People don’t know something better exists unless you show them.
You could talk about VVS diamonds all day, but unless you put one side by side with an SI diamond, they may never understand.
You have to show them and teach them about higher clarity and higher color. Teach them, tell them, show them under a microscope.
Customers need to not only hear it, but see it, to fully comprehend.
Once they can see it with their own eyes, it will all make sense. They can then justify the difference in price and want to spend more money to get something better.
Always compare and show higher quality goods. You may not be able to take them all the way to the very top, but I assure you, you’ll probably get them somewhere in between.
This can work on carat weight, or any higher priced items:
“I can show you a much bigger diamond, that will give you the same exact look, with only going one step lower in color, for just a small difference of $600. Let me show it to you so you can see what I’m talking about…“
Ooops. I forgot to ask them if they wanted to see it. ;) I’m leading the sale.
Show them. Let them decide. You threw out a line, see if they bite.
Show big and you’ll make bigger sales.
Avoid yes or no questions
You want the quickest way to walk a customer? Ask them a yes or no question.
“Can I help you with something?”
“Do you like this ring?“
“Are you happy with this carat weight?”
“Is white gold okay?“
“Do you want to buy it?”
This allows the customer to say yes or no, and that’s it.
To find out what a customer really likes, wants, needs and desires, you have to get them talking.
Ask them open-ended questions that matter.
“What are you liking best about this ring, the channel set stones, the princess cut diamond, the way it fits on your finger…?”
This opens the customer up and gets them talking about what they like, what they don’t like, what they’re looking for… It will help you pinpoint what you should be showing them, and zero in on the target.
“What do you think about the way that the diamonds are set around the head?”
“Do you think she’d like a ring that sits up high, has a low profile, or one that sits flush with the mounting?”
“What styles of rings does she wear now? Flat rings, rings with high settings, wide rings?“
Questions like this get the customer talking and telling you important information that’s needed to close a sale. Listen up.
“Are you looking for a stone that’s pure white, or is color not a big issue?”
And don’t assume that they fully understand the 4c’s. “Have you gone over the 4c’s yet?” This is a bad question. If the customer has been out looking, they will very quickly say “Yes“, and this pretty much closes the topic of the 4c’s and will make it harder for you to talk about them.
Instead, just bring out the chart and start going over it. People like a refresher anyway and it shows them what they’re looking at, and shows that you know what you’re doing. Don’t give them the opportunity to close you off.
Previous customers bought…
People are always interested in what other people bought and didn’t. “I had a lady earlier who was looking for a yellow gold ring, but once she saw how these diamonds sparkled in the white gold mounting, she was sold.“
Give advice on what previous customers would do or buy.
It will help them decide if they know that other people did the exact same thing.
“She was in search of a brilliant cut diamond, but she tried on a princess cut and fell in love with it because it looked so large on her finger.“
Tell them what other people bought. Tell them what’s popular.
Customers won’t know unless you tell them.
People like to go along with the flow. Get the approval of others. They want to make the right choice and if a lot of other people are buying SI1 diamonds, then by all means, they probably will too.
Tell them stories, show them what others purchased, and why.
“He wished he had bought the service plan because his fiancée got her ring caught in her gloves and ripped a prong off…“
“He ended up going with the bigger stone because it didn’t raise his payments, and he knew that once she put the ring on her finger, it wasn’t coming off.”
“My neighbor Susan bought her ring here, even though it was a little more expensive than what the competitor had, just because we had a jeweler in the back who did the sizing while she waited, she didn’t have to go 2 weeks just to get it fit. Having a jeweler on hand was a great benefit to her and she walked out of the store with the biggest smile on her face.”
Jewelry that compliments.
Having a customer unsure of what style or type of ring to buy? Show them ones that compliment their skin tone, looks balanced on their fingers, and works well with their other jewelry.
Some people try on rings and don’t realize that it doesn’t look right on them. The ring is too wide for their fingers. The white gold doesn’t go well with their sun tan. The marquise cut diamond gets lost on their hand. The mounting is too wide for the stone…
Show them rings that not only look great, but compliment their hands. it has to look good.
The last thing you want is for a customer to end up with a dumb looking ring “The jeweler picked this out.” Ha!
Steer them casually into something that works best for them.
“I would get something like this that is two-tone because it will match both your yellow gold jewelry and your white gold jewelry. It will compliment everything you own.”
Find out what keeps them from buying.
If you can learn what their objections are, you can overcome them and make the sale.
“What’s holding you back?“
“Is there something about this ring you don’t like?”
“What will it take to get you to walk out the door with this?“
“Why not buy it today?”
See if you can dig up what the real issue is. If a customers is showing buying signals, but isn’t buying, then see if you can get them to spill the beans, tell you what exactly is keeping them from buying right here, right now. Price? The color of the ring? The size of the diamond? The shape?
If you ask enough questions, you can usually get to the root of the issue. And when you overcome that objection, the customer has no more reason not to buy. It’s usually a done deal.
Most of the time, the objection is price. You don’t necessarily have to give them a better price, you just haven’t talked enough about the benefits and quality so it justifies the price.
When they aren’t buying it, I like to think; they’re not buying yet.
That’s the fun part of sales. Overcoming obstacles. Jumping the hurdles to the finish line.
“If we could finance this interest free, would that make a difference, or are you fine paying cash?“
“We can have the jeweler put this bigger diamond in that mounting today, so you can wear it home. Would that be okay, or do you want it boxed up?”
“I can order the same ring in white gold for you. All you need to do is put a small deposit on the item and I’ll order it today. Simple as that.“
“What are you willing to spend on this piece? How far apart are we?“
Find the objection. Solve it…
You’ll have your sale.
“How about we set it up with no down payment, or very little down?“
Often you’ll find that customer’s objections are not big issues… The price is only $200 more than they wanted to spend. He doesn’t know her ring size. They didn’t know that you had lay-a-way. She really wanted to pick out the mounting herself. He wanted a one carat diamond.
These are all pretty easy to overcome… now that you know what it is. :)
Assume the sale
It’s amazing what you can do when you have the mind set that ‘these customers are buying‘.
Really. If you believe and assume the sale, you’ll make more of them.
I like to start getting the customer’s info before they’ve even said yes.
“How about we size her fingers and see what ring size she needs?”
“Let’s run a credit check and see how much they can approve you for.“
“Let’s put a deposit on this and you can pay the rest when you pick it up.”
I’m assuming they will buy.
“You’re just going to love your new ring, and wait until you see her smile…”
“When her girlfriends see how big this diamond is, they’ll faint.”
“She will be so happy you picked the mounting out for yourself.”
Assume the sale, and ask for it.
You’re going to buy it, I just have to prove it to you. :)
Don’t be a nervous Nelly
Here’s something that new salespeople do… they get nervous showing big ticket items. They do.
This is also why I never let a newbie show expensive items without the proper training.
Nervousness comes with lack of experience, training, and knowledge. They stutter, stammer, sweat, shake…
Customers see this. Feel this. It’s not good. It doesn’t make them feel like they’re buying from a seasoned pro or an experienced jeweler. “They don’t know what they’re doing.“
Big sales have to be worked up to. You can’t just sell $12,000 right off the bat (unless you get lucky). Knowledge brings a confidence that gets rid of the jitters. You gain a smoothness that the professionals have. The gift of gab.
Build slowly. Big diamond sales will happen… When you’re ready.
The secret is…
I love telling customers a secret. Pssst… it brings them into the presentation and into my world. I have their full attention and they feel like they’re getting an inside scoop.
I lean in, keep my voice low (almost to a whisper), and tell them what I can do…
“I can get you a multi-item discount if you buy 2 items or more.”
“We can throw tax in, so it’s built into the price of this ring.”
“The manager said we could give you the service plan for free if you buy the ring today.”
“We have a sale on Saturday that will mark the price of this ring down 20%.”
“We can size this ring right here, now, while you wait.“
It doesn’t matter much what the “secret” is, just that you’re giving them something special that you don’t want to announce loudly for the rest of the store to hear. It’s between you and them.
“I’ll have it set in a solitaire setting for you, free if you pay cash-cash.“
Things like that hook a customer. They get excited about this so-called secret.
“We can give you 6 months same as cash, and defer the payments for 2 full months.”
What’s your secret?
Sell the diamond reports
If you truly want to sell diamonds and a lot of them, learn how to read a GIA diamond report. know what every line means. Know how to explain everything on there. Know how to use that info to sell your stones.
Show them the diamond plot and how to find those inclusions listed inside the stone.
Go over clarity and how rare it is in nature as you go up the scale.
Show them where the inscription is on the report and where to find it on the diamond (and show them).
Show them diamonds above and below that clarity and color so they can compare and see for themselves why it would matter or not.
Show them the date on the report and why that would matter.
Show them that it has no value listed on the report and why.
I did an entire article in my diamond guide section that goes further into reading a diamond report. I suggest you read it.
It will help you immensely.
Customers say no 8 times
Understand that customers will say “no” many, many times before they’ll actually say “yes“.
In fact, studies have been done that suggest customers say no up to 8 times before they finally give in and buy.
That’s 8 rejections back to back.
8 objections. 8 hurdles to jump. 8 no’s that could break you down if you let them.
You have to keep working. Keep moving towards a “yes” in order to make the sale.
8 times a charm.
Granted, it could be 6 times, 20 times, or never, but you’ll hear “no” a lot.
Get used to it. Learn how to deal with it and roll with the punches.
8 is enough, isn’t it?
This, or that?
Give customer’s ultimatums.
This, or that?
It will help sell your goods and make the register ring.
An ultimatum is giving them a choice between one thing or another:
“Would you like me to box the ring, or wrap it up?”
They haven’t even said they’ll take it yet, but you’re maneuvering around that subject. You’re going directly to the finish line.
“Would you like to size it, or give it to her as is?”
“Do you think you’ll be paying cash, or do you want to charge it?“
“Do you want to wait for the appraisal, or do you want me to mail it to you?”
This or that will keep them from saying yes or no…
Bring up topics early on in the sales presentation and it will make the transition much easier later on…
Many sales people wait until the customer is buying the ring to bring up the service plan. Not cool. They’ll wait until they’re at the counter, ringing up the item, and they’ll say something silly like “Do you want the service plan?” (and for some reason, since they hate selling these plans, they say it sadly with a frown on their face). Why bother?
They won’t say anything else. :( They’ll just look at the customer for an answer.
So what does the customer say “No!” Of course.
But… If you started selling it early, you would more than likely hear a yes.
I start selling items like this while I’m still on the floor showing customers merchandise. If they’re looking at a white gold wedding set, I know that white gold will need rhodiumed later… So I run with it and say something like:
“This ring is 14k white gold. White gold is basically yellow gold with some zinc added to make it look whiter. Then the metal is rhodium plated, which is a durable, white metal, and makes the ring even more whiter. That plating though will eventually wear off over time. This is done by just normal wear and tear on the ring. It’s natural, and normal. It could take anywhere from 1 year to 3 years depending on the acid in your skin and how rough you are on your jewelry…
“But don’t worry. You can bring it into the store at any time and we will re-rhodium plate it. Rhodium is not cheap though and it could cost you up to $200 per time unless you purchase our service plan.
“Our service plan is a one time charge of only $25 that literally covers the entire ring for life against re-tipping, polishing, sizings, solderings, any kind of prong work, and of course rhodium plating. Our $25 service plan will allow you to get your rings rhodiumed whenever you need it for free. It’s well worth the small price. Just remind me at checkout and I’ll add it to your order” (notice I’m selling features and benefits and assuming the sale).
Then, at checkout, instead of saying quite sadly “Do you want the service plan?“
I’ll actually say “You do want to get the service plan that we talked about, right?” and as I say this, I’ll nod my head yes and look directly at them.
Because I sold early, adding on is easy. Customers will almost always say yes about 99% of the time. :)
You can do this with finance plans, insurance, warranties, appraisals, jewelry cleaner, anything you want, as long as you drop it into the presentation at some point early on so they hear it and are familiar with it. It’s as good as gold.
Sell early, and it will be hard for customers to say no.
Size their fingers
Here’s me assuming the sale…
“How about we go up front and get your finger sized?“
Everybody wants to know their ring sizes, right?
This actually works great. It gets customers away from the dreaded yes or no buying decision. It gets them away from the diamond case with all the expensive merchandise staring them back at them. It gets them up front, to the safety of the counter (register), as I size their fingers, which of course, I would have to do anyway… And it gives the customers a chance to catch their breath and relax.
And while I’m sizing their fingers I’ll introduce them to the office manager “This is Betty. She’s the one who would handle your paperwork, payments, appraisals…”
This gets them smiling and exchanging “Hellos” with Betty.
I’ll also point out that our shop is in the back (pointing to the back room), where they would size the rings (we don’t send them out to be done).
And if the boss is around, I’ll point him out too and possibly call him out to introduce him (meet our friendly staff here). :)
Then I’ll go easily into something like this “You know, it only takes a couple of minutes to run a report and get this whole thing going. We could probably size the ring right now while you wait. “Would you like me to see if that’s possible, or is it easier to just pick the finished ring up tomorrow?”
She’s glancing at him, he’s glancing at her…
This was unexpected. :)
Normally, since customers don’t have to say yes or no to actually buying the ring, they’ll probably say yes about the sizing (that’s all I’m doing is dropping bread crumbs).
But, here’s what I know… a yes means I’ll take it.
I just made it easier for them. :)
And of course, the office manager will take it from here…
Keep it professional
Be a pro from start to finish. Don’t get all touchy-feely with them. A light tap on the shoulder while you’re peering through the microscope is fine, but don’t go grabbing their arms or body… Don’t get in their comfort zone. Their personal space.
Keep it professional at all times. Don’t call them Honey. Don’t call them Sweetie. Don’t go winking at her while he isn’t looking…
Stay business. I’m not saying be a fuddy-duddy with no sense of humor, I’m just saying remain an upstanding citizen and treat your customers right. A sense of humor is good, if used properly.
People like to hear stories (short ones), that will make them laugh, make them feel good, and help them decide what to do… Or to just get their mind off spending $4,000, if only for a second.
“This guy bought a ring from me last week and he had the coolest idea for a wedding proposal. He was going to send her on a geocaching treasure hunt….”
See how that story hooks you? You want to learn more.
“I had a couple looking at rings one time, and the man bolted out of the store. The girl turns to me and says ‘No boyfriend, no ring, no worries.‘”
Tell a story, make them laugh, ease the tension.
“I’m waiting on this married couple, and the guy turns to his wife and he says ‘This or the couch’, and then he turns back to me and says ‘And you can’t beat what I can do on the couch.'” Ha!
People like to laugh. They like to have a good time. So do I…
“This older lady said to me ‘My ring used to snag real bad. It gets caught on my dog, and now I have a hairless dog.'”
bwahahahaha! Not right, but funny.
“What cut is that?” the man asks. The wife says “Trillion cut” “Why do they call it that?” he says. She thinks for a minute, smiles, and says “Cause it costs a trillion dollars.“
:) Tell a story. Get them laughing. It can be anything. It could be nothing. Just talk and be real.
And if you can be funny, more power to ya. :)
As a salesperson, learn everything you can about diamonds and gemstones.
Many jewelry stores and corporations want employees to be certified. Many will even pay for their workers to go through certification courses just so they can become more proficient, more valuable, and experts in selling stones.
The two biggest that I can think of in the country are GIA certification, and DCA (Diamond Council of America). They will both certify you in diamonds and gems (among many other wonderful courses available), and help you understand gems through and through so you can sell better, sound better, and ultimately, make more money.
Get certified in diamonds and gems today.
Courses can cost anywhere from $300 to $3,000. But learning your subject that well, is worth the added expense. It’s investing in your career and your future, which I highly recommend. :)
This is how you hold it.
An inexperienced salesperson let’s a customer hold a loupe to view a diamond any way they want. And customers will. They will hold the loupe at arms length and try to see inclusions in the stone. They will bend all the way over the stone and keep moving the hand-held magnifier in and out trying to see it.
In other words: they don’t know how to use one.
A bad salesperson will just watch them (maybe snicker), and not teach them how it’s done.
Customers should be taught how to hold a loupe; hold it up to their good eye about 1/2 inch away (see image above). They need to plant their thumb against their cheek to keep the loupe steady and not moving (stabilizes it). They then need to bring the diamond, held in tweezers or a mounting, up to the loupe until it comes into focus. And they should do all of this while tilting their head slightly back so their shadow doesn’t fall over the stone and darken it.
It’s a simple thing that takes practice, and a good salesperson will show customers and tell customers the right way to use one.
Make sure you can use a loupe yourself. Nothing makes you look more inexperienced than when you’re fumbling around, trying to find flaws in a stone, and the loupe is bobbing all over the place.
Loupes can work great in any presentation, just like the microscope. They all serve their purpose and will help to sell diamonds…
If used properly. :)
It’s 10 minutes before close. A couple comes into the store to shop for engagement rings. What do they get? A 5 minute rushed presentation that kicks them out the door!
Did they get the same sales experience as if they were to come in during the day? No. They don’t get the great 1 hour happy presentation. They don’t even get very much explanation. They didn’t get to see the diamonds under a microscope… the sales person is talking way too fast. They’re moving fast. Looking around… Trying to get them to buy quickly. And all they really want is to for the customers to leave, get out… it’s closing time. They want to go home.
I get it. It’s easy for people to feel rushed. “Sorry to have bothered you.” It happens during lunch, everyone else is in the back is eating pizza… But you.
It’s time for your shift to end… You have an appointment you can’t miss…
It does happen. It happens to the best of us. But if that’s the case, then those customers should be waited on by someone who will take the time with them. Who will give them their full attention and not shut the lights off. They are spending the same amount of money on their rings as the previous customer. They deserve the same respect.
I’ve seen salespeople rush customers just because they didn’t think they were buying. They just decided that they didn’t want to wait on them and pretty much left them stranded.
“Who’s waiting on those people?” No one (the competition soon).
Give everyone the same time and courtesy as long as you’re open for business, treat everyone the same way and you’ll make a lot of sales, regardless of the ticking clock.
If that’s the only time that customers have to shop and buy… Then so be it. I’m not going to deny their money.
Kings and Queens
Treat customers like they are Kings and Queens. Pamper them. Be friendly to them. Be professional at all times. Don’t disrespect them. Make them feel special.
Go out of your way to enhance their experience and really make them feel like you’re giving them more than anyone else would.
A great experience comes from great customer service. It’s going the extra mile.
“Would you like a coffee while you decide?”
“Don’t worry about it, we will deliver your ring to you when it’s finished.“
“The jeweler will polish up all your rings while you wait, at no charge.“
“Don’t worry about the watch battery, it’s on the house.“
“Here’s a bottle of jewelry cleaner so you can keep your diamonds sparkling.”
“How about I fax over a copy of your appraisal to your insurance company so it saves you a trip?“
“Here’s a certificate that you can use when you come back to see me to buy his wedding band.”
Anything that you can do to go above and beyond, whether it be giving them something, doing something, or just taking care of a problem, do so. Customers want to feel important. They want to shop somewhere were they know the employees are happy and excited to see them when they enter the door.
Raise the bar.
Great customer service starts with you.
You must create memorable first impressions. You must wow your customers. You must build loyalty. Your competition will envy you. Your customers will thank you. You’ll see immediate results.
Kings and Queens. Treat them like royalty and they’ll shop with you for life.
Sell what you love
The items that you love are the items you’ll sell tons of.
It’s true. I love channel set diamonds. So because of this, I show them, talk about them, get excited about them, all because I love them.
Customers can feel this love. They see my eyes light up when I’m going on about them. This love rubs off on them. They buy because I love it so much. They buy because I can sell the crap out of things I love.
I love princess cut diamonds. I love the way they look so large. I love the shape of them. I love how they are just as brilliant as a brilliant cut diamond. I love showing them off and building them up. I just love them.
I love pave set diamonds. I think they are about the most beautiful styles on the market. I adore them and sell them like hot cakes.
If you love something, you’ll push it without even trying to. it just comes naturally.
So show the items that you love the most and watch your sales go up. :)
Recognize buying signals
Can you read customers? Can you read body language? Can you tell if a customer is giving you the signals that they are interested in buying?
What is a buying signal?
Interest. Is the customer leaning forward? Are they really looking intently at one particular item? Are they really thinking hard about it and scratching their chin? Are they thumbing through their wallet and counting their cash?
Customers do and say all sorts of things that tip you off as to what they are thinking.
Are they asking how long does it takes to get the ring sized?
Are they going back to the very first ring they looked at and comparing it?
Are they asking if it comes in white gold versus yellow?
They are giving you buying signals.
“Do you offer financing?”
“What happens if she doesn’t like it?”
“How much do I need to put down?“
If they’re asking questions about payments, exchanging, returning… Anything of the sort, they’ve already accepted the fact that they want to buy it. You just need to overcome a few obstacles.
You have to reel them in.
“Does the credit check take long?“
“Not at all. I can type pretty fast and it only takes a couple of minutes to get it going. Let me see your driver’s license and I’ll get started right now…
Of course… I’m assuming the sale. They never had to say yes. :)
Here’s the best advise I could probably give: mimic the pros.
To learn how to sell, watch an experienced professional sell.
When I first started selling, my mentor would pull me aside, point to this pro salesman and say “Watch him. He knows what he’s doing.“
Watch how they lead the conversation. Listen to how they close early and close often. See how they build rapport, calm the customer’s nerves, and justify the price of the goods.
Watching a pro sell a diamond ring is better than any training course out there. It’s watching, listening, learning and repeating. It shows you how smoothly things can sound. How smoothly it all rolls off the tongue. It’s an art form. It takes practice and eventually you’ll find your own voice and your own way of selling.
Learning from someone who is seasoned is worth all the time and effort. Stand close enough to listen, but not close enough to interfere or look awkward. Clean some rings a few cases over and pay attention. You’ll pick up a ton of tricks and tips. Things you never knew you could say or do.
You can also read up on selling. I did. I read a lot of sales books, like Zig Ziglar (secrets of closing the sale and top performance). He taught me about selling and how to close, close, close a deal. It’s my greatest talent. Train often, mimic the experienced salespeople, read, and practice.
Soon enough you’ll be selling like a pro too.
Act like it’s their ring already…
“Just look at the way your diamond shines.”
“Your diamonds won’t ever fall out of the mounting because of the channel walls.”
“You could put your diamond up against any diamond out there and it will outshine them all.”
You, Your, Yours, You’re
Say you and you’ll sell much more.
Put the item in their possession. It’s theirs.
“Your girlfriend is just going to love her new ring.”
“These sparkles will just light up her eyes.”
“When you give this to her, she will get the biggest smile on her face.”
Act like it’s theirs. Act like they’ve already bought it.
“When would you like your ring finished?”
You get my drift.
Break the price down
Break down the price of the ring so it’s in little, bitty bites.
“That diamond is only $900 more than you wanted to spend (we won’t talk about the other $8,000). That’s only $75 more a month, which actually works out to only $2.50 a day. That’s a pretty small difference. In fact, that’s less than the price of one coffee at Starbucks.” lol
Break it down.
“It’s only 1 more payment on a credit plan, you’ll never even notice it. You’re already spending $3,000, what’s another $95? Really!”
See how that works?
Now the price doesn’t seem so much. :)
Once you sell the customers one thing, you can sell more.
Sell add-ons (do you want to super-size that?)
Once they buy, their guard is down. You already have their trust. They’re in good spirits. The hard decision is over… Now it’s easy to say “Let’s just look at his band while you’re here.”
Sure. Why not?
“Let me show you the perfect wrap for this diamond since they’re right here…”
You can also give them more incentives to buy… “We can give you a discount for multi-purchases.“
Selling more gets easier once they are in that buying mood.
“Want to see the perfect earrings that would compliment this ring?” Wink Wink!
Quality not quantity.
One thing you’ll learn early on is that, for the most part, people really do want to buy quality over quantity.
People are more willing to step down in carat size and buy a smaller stone, if that stone has a better clarity or color.
Quality sells. People want good quality. They don’t want to spend their money on junk.
Granted I have run across a few individuals that just wanted size regardless of how big the inclusions were inside the stone (and trust me, they were huge). They didn’t care. They wanted something that you could see across the room.
But for most, it’s quality. It’s knowing that the item they’re buying is average or higher in clarity or color. They want to know and feel like the money they’ve spent is well worth it.
So before you try to sell huge diamonds, sell clarity and color first.
Generally higher quality is higher priced anyway. :)
Draw it out.
My favorite way of teaching customers and getting my point across…
I draw it out.
Seriously. I get a pencil and a pad of paper and I draw out what I’m talking about. They can hear it and see it.
It makes them comprehend it all better.
I draw out a diagram of how light enters a diamond “This is light entering the stone. Notice how it bounces across the pavilion and comes back out in brilliance and fire…”
Draw it. Circle it. Show them and they will get it.
“Right here is where the small feather is inside the stone…”
“We can design the piece so the mounting comes up and over the stone like this…”
Oh. I get the picture now. :)
And speaking of pictures…
Paint an image inside your customer’s mind and they will go there and visualize it. It will take them out of the store. Back into their own life. And they can see and feel what you’re saying…
“Imagine her eyes light up as she’s opening the box on Christmas day.”
Guess what? They’re imagining it. :)
“You’ll need to wear sunglasses outside because this diamond is so bright.”
“Can you picture what her friends will do when they see the size of this stone?”
“Imagine handing her this ring on a beach in Hawaii. The sun. The sand. The gentle sound of the waves. Getting down on bended knee…“
You can almost feel it can’t you?
…On a cruise in the Caribbean.
…While white water rafting.
I’m painting a picture of them with the ring somewhere other than here. it works.
You pictured it. Didn’t you?
“Oh my god, I can’t wait to show you this ring we just got in, it’s to die for. Follow me…”
Now, whether or not they wanted to see that ring is one thing, but trust me, they are going to look at that ring. Why? Because my enthusiasm was too much for them to resist.
Be enthusiastic about your jewelry.
Enthusiasm sells. Enthusiasm is contagious.
“Just look at how that diamond is sparkling like crazy. It’s so full of fire and life it’s insane.”
Enthusiasm is a huge driving force. It’s unstoppable. It will suck people in and sell them and they won’t even know it.
“That diamond ring looks so awesome on your hand. Here, put it in the light, just look at it shine. Tilt you hand back and forth. It looks like there’s a spotlight on the stone. That’s stunning. You need this ring.“
Crazy. But my enthusiasm is rubbing off…
“Look at how big that smile is on her face. I’ve never seen anyone so happy. She’s glowing from ear to ear. She wants this ring. She wants this ring bad.”
Can you feel me?
Makes you want to buy, now doesn’t it?
“Are you thinking about a larger stone, or is this diamond the perfect size for you?”
You won’t know unless you ask.
“Is she a fan of white gold, or does she primarily wear yellow gold jewelry?”
Ask, and you shall receive.
“How are you thinking about paying? Credit card, account, or just paying cash?”
“You know, we have a layaway plan that could hold the ring for you, unless you just can’t wait and want to give her the ring right now. What do you think?”
If you want to overcome objections, you’ll need to find out what they are. And the only way to do that is to dig. Ask the right questions that will get the customer talking…
Customers will tell you everything you need to know. Ask for it. And listen.
2 months salary.
Selling the 2 months salary guidelines really does work.
People are always wondering how much to spend? What is recommended? What do others spend? What price is normal?
Use the 2 months salary to guide you.
“Most people spend 2 months salary on a diamond ring. That’s really not much considering the fact that you’ll be wearing this ring every day for the rest of your life. 2 months really is nothing in the grand scheme of things.”
I like to them break the price down and associate it with other expensive items…
“There are few things in life that cost this much money. You work and save your whole life and you spend your money on cars, houses, education, weddings… And the engagement ring is one of these luxury items. You only buy it once, but it will last you a lifetime.
“It would be nice to do that with homes or vehicles, but you’ll always be upgrading those, fixing them up, putting more money into them. It’s never-ending. This ring you buy once, and you’ll need to put very little in it for as long as you own it. A few prongs here and there. A polishing. Maybe even a sizing. But when you spend this money, this 2 months salary, on an item that will be around forever and passed down from generation to generation, it’s a pretty small price to pay for the benefits and the sentimental value it brings.”
Is 2 months too much to pay? I think not.
Sell the averages. People like to feel normal. They like to go along with the flow…
“On average people buy SI1 clarity.“
“People buy G-H color diamonds the most…”
“The average wedding ring costs around $3,000.”
“The normal carat weight sold is just 3/8 carat…”
This gives them a starting point. Most people have no clue as to what the average Joe buys. How much they spend. Or what to expect. That’s where you come in…
Averages help them plant their feet and gives them a target to shoot for. :)
Give them time to decide
When I know customers are trying to decide whether to buy or not. I allow them the time to talk it over. To decide.
I don’t continue to pressure them. I give them space to think. And I allow them to do it here, versus at home…
This is usually the time when I’ll go get their jewelry from the cleaner…
“While you’re deciding… Let me go get your jewelry. It should be clean by now…”
And I’ll come back slowly. Watching. Seeing if they’re still debating…
“Do you still need a moment to talk it over?”
Don’t rush them. Get out of their hair. Let them decide.
There is no reason to force them. You don’t need to put a foot to their throat…
Just give them as much quiet time and space as they need. When they’re ready, you’ll see them looking around for you.
I find if I allow them the opportunity to discuss the purchase, I sell more, and sell more often.
A little breathing room goes a long, long way.
We all need some of that. :)
Think long term
After you sell your customers, plant thoughts in their head about future sales.
“Now, when you’re ready, come back and see me to get your wedding band.“
“When you need to buy her that pearl necklace for the wedding, look me up…”
“We have the best gifts for the bridal party. Make sure you come back and I’ll be glad to show them off.”
Think long term.
“When you want to get her a mother’s day ring, I already know her ring size.“
“In a year, when you want to get her an anniversary band, I have the perfect ring that will fit up against her set.“
Push for future sales, and push yourself.
You want them to come back, and come back and shop with you. :)
Keep in contact with your customers. Don’t just sell them and dismiss them. Make them your customers for life.
Call them when their ring is finished (just don’t ruin a surprise.)
Send them a congrats card on their wedding.
Mail them a birthday card.
Keep yourself and your store in their thoughts.
Remind them they have an anniversary coming and you have the perfect gift for them.
Follow up takes work and dedication.
“I just wanted to call you to tell you that your sizing is finished a day early, and it looks wonderful.“
I recommend keeping a customer book, that holds names, dates, ring sizes, anniversaries, special occasions, things like that can lead to future sales…
If you start one of these, and use it, you will make more sales and more customers for life. It really does work. Daily planners work perfect for this.
Here’s my card
If you can’t sell the customers today, don’t just let them just walk out the door empty handed. Write the info of the ring down they’re looking at on your business card and put it in their hand.
Having that info makes it easier for them to remember you, remember exactly what they looked at, remember the carat weight, color and price. It makes it easier for them to shop and compare.
Even if they didn’t find a piece they loved in your store, they still may like you and come back at a later date to shop.
Hand out your business card, give them a warm smile, invite them back so when they do need something else, they’ll know where to go…
You can’t always win every sale. But you can still gain customers for life.
“Come back and see me. I’d love to do business with you in the future.“
Top Recommended Vendors:
James Allen is a leader in diamonds. Their real time interactive diamond inspection is the best in the industry. View and rotate any diamond under 20x magnification. Their prices, selection, lifetime warranty, 24/7 customer support and hassle free returns are unbeatable. Visit James Allen today.
Blue Nile is the largest and most well known respected diamond dealer online. They are highly trusted, have a huge inventory, and low low prices (compare anywhere and see for yourself). If you want to save money, or build your own ring, this is the place to shop. Visit Blue Nile today.