In 2018, more than 29 million people purchased jewelry online daily. So buying and selling jewelry online is big business and can be hugely lucrative!
With stats like these, however, it’s safe to say that competition is huge. Not to worry though! We’re here to provide you with an expert guide to get you on the right track.
Ready to become an entrepreneur selling jewelry online? Let’s dive in!
With jewelry being a billion-dollar online marketplace, why wouldn’t you want a slice of that pie?
Because jewelry is a consumer product, it knows no boundaries! Jewelry appeals to both men and women no matter their age (or culture)! With this in mind, you know that you’ll never run out of buyers.
Check out what’s being bought online:
Jewelry is also hugely diverse:
Sellers can offer rings, necklaces, bracelets, anklets, or belly rings, just to name a few. Each of these products can be made from hundreds of different mediums such as gold, diamonds, gemstones, shells, beads, and more!
In fact, jewelry is so diverse that if you start digging into the multitude of options, you may find your head spinning. For each unique piece comes a unique design and so on. Take a look at the image below for a better insight.
Head spinning, yet? These are just the clasps available to tie your jewelry together! If something so small is this diverse, there should be no problem finding unique pieces to offer your customers, right?
Right! The number one thing you should focus on before starting your jewelry store is understanding how to keep it running.
So, how do you sell jewelry online to make a living? We’re glad you asked!
Because fashion is a fluid industry, you’ll need to keep your customers engaged by updating your product range and adding up to date trends to your store. Keep in mind that fashion is an ever-evolving niche with new trends and fads.
Your customers will constantly be on the lookout for new pieces to add to their wardrobe. In order to make sure you have these new hot items in stock, you need to know about the trends even before the most devout fashionistas!
But, how do you know when new trends roll in? Great question! One way is to follow jewelry blogs such as:
But here’s a pro tip for you: Plug in the keyword “jewelry trends” into Google Alerts for up to date trends. When you do this, Google will help you out by emailing you when a new article pops up including your keyword - nice!
Finally, SaleHoo also offers a way to find new jewelry by using the Market Research Lab. Here, you’ll find hot new products including how much an item is selling and average profits.
To be honest, it’s going to take more than following a few well-known jewelry blogs and typing in keywords to rank your online store.
A few extra tips to follow are:
It's also best to do your research and try to get some inspiration from already established dropshipping websites.
One of the toughest decisions you’ll have to make: pricing your jewelry. A good rule of thumb to follow when starting out is to start with four times your material cost and packaging.
Most consignment or wholesale opportunities take up 40 to 60 percent of your retail cost. By starting your base price at 4 times your materials cost will keep you from working for free (or worse, losing money).
Think about whether or not you’re going to charge customers for shipping, too. If so, be sure to add in how much it’ll cost them before they abandon their cart at checkout.
Other questions to ask:
Will you accept returns? What about refunds? What will you do if your jewelry breaks before your customer gets it? Have a backup plan in mind for freak accidents, and you’ll be good to go.
Etsy is the darling of the arts and crafts retail world. It’s the most established and popular eCommerce platform for handcrafted goods. That’s largely because it was the first major breakaway from the likes of eBay and Amazon. It claims to have close to 54 million registered users, 20 million active buyers, and 1.4 million sellers. This was back in 2014, though, so those numbers are likely to have increased. While Etsy looks and feels like a niche platform - the online version of your weekend craft market - it’s really a massive retail force.
Jewelry is perfect for the Etsy platform, especially if you can source or create something unique. You’ll be competing with thousands of other sellers, so you need to do everything you can to stand out. Just be aware of the $0.20 USD listing fee per item, which can add up quickly if you’ve got a large inventory. There’s also a 5% transaction fee.
Ruby Lane is an online marketplace devoted to antiques, art, vintage collectibles and jewelry. It’s the perfect place to sell jewelry online. While Ruby Lane is smaller than places like Etsy and eBay, it has a much more targeted customer base. And besides, Ruby Lane claims to have 1.1 million unique visitors per month, which is a lot more than you’ll get coming through your doors in a traditional retail store. Ruby Lane is also more “high brow” than its competitors, which means you could have more success selling high-end fine jewelry.
Most of Ruby Lane’s users (85%) are women aged over 40, which also happens to be a demographic with disposable income to spend on jewelry. While there’s no commission, Ruby Lane charges $0.19 per listing and a tiered “maintenance” fee that ranges from $69 a month for small sellers, to $0.01 per item for major sellers. There’s also a one-off $100 set-up cost.
eBay is the second largest online retail website in the United States, behind Amazon. It’s auction option makes it a good platform for selling jewelry, especially secondhand items or antiques that might hold more value than you realise. eBay has become a highly competitive market and tends to favor sellers that can compete on price - sometimes leading to a race to the bottom.
If you can optimize your listings and source jewelry that people want to buy, then you can still have success selling jewelry on eBay. eBay has put together its own guide to selling jewelry, which is worth reading if you’re considering selling on the platform.
Bonanza is becoming one of the most popular alternatives to eBay and Amazon and seems to be a great option for selling jewelry online. A quick search shows more than 85,000 items listed under “handcrafted jewelry” on Bonanza. While that sounds like a lot, it’s not as much as some major online marketplaces. If you have a unique jewelry product backed up with some savvy marketing, you could have success selling jewelry on Bonanza.
The best thing about Bonanza is that it’s free to set up your store and they only take a 3.5% commission from the final value of each sale. That means more money in your pocket compared to most other platforms.
Amazon launched Amazon Handmade in 2015 to give artisans a more targeted platform to sell their wares. As the name suggests, Amazon Handmade is exclusively for handmade goods, including jewelry. Amazon Handmade reviews every artisan application and audits production methods to ensure that the goods are genuinely handcrafted. This is a good option if you make handcrafted jewelry as it removes the competition from sellers of cheap, generic jewelry. Amazon is offering free Professional selling plans (usually $39.99 per month) to Amazon Handmade artisans until the end of 2019. They do take a 15% referral fee per item sold (or $1 minimum per item). So you’ll have to weigh up whether the fees are worth it. Keep in mind, Amazon is by far the largest online retailer in the United States and one of the biggest in the world. If you can tap into that customer base, you could do very well for yourself.
If you’re not making your own jewelry, you’re going to need to find a reliable jewelry supplier. But where do you start? It’s fairly easy to find jewelry suppliers, but it can be a challenge finding a good one that you can trust. First, you need to decide if you’re looking for a dropshipper, wholesaler, or manufacturer. While the process of finding them is similar, there are minor differences.
You can read more about finding quality suppliers here.
It’s easier than ever to build and launch an online store to sell jewelry. Once you have a product and a supplier, you can use one of the following tools to start building your store. All of these tools allow you to either build an online jewelry store from scratch, or add eCommerce capabilities to your existing website.
When setting up a online store for jewelry, style is very important. You want the website to reflect your brand and its messaging. If you’re selling fine jewelry, you want to use a sharp, clean, modern design with slick product photographs.
If you’re selling handcrafted jewelry, you want it to appear more laid-back and bohemian. Think about your audience and customers when designing your website and, if you can afford it, pay for the services of a professional web and graphic designer.
You should also consider offering a range of payment options on your site, including credit card, Paypal, Stripe, and Afterpay. Most of these can be added easily using any of the software above.
Now that you’ve got a good idea on how to start up your online store, as well as what you’d like to sell, we’re going to offer you some pro tips to keep your store up and running.
Don’t worry, these tips are free of charge! All we ask is that you implement them daily (and share this article, if you found it helpful). Sound good? Great!
This is probably the most important tip we can offer you. By avoiding fake products, you’re saving your customers (and yourself) from grief. Did you know that brand-name jewelry (like Tiffany and Co., Bvlgari, and Gucci) are all victims of counterfeiters?
One sure-fire way to avoid selling fake jewelry is by only supplying materials from suppliers who are members of the BBB (Better Business Bureau).
As shown in the image above, it’s easy to spot fake jewelry. Most fake products will turn your skin green after a while (and, in some serious cases, can cause rashes). This ring, however, looks like costume jewelry, so the buyer should have seen this coming.
There are so many suppliers out there currently selling cheap products. Here’s the problem, though: If you’re caught selling knock-off items, you could have your website shut down. You could even face prosecution by the original brand owner!
Even if that doesn’t happen, your customers will still be unhappy and won’t come back.
Think about it - would you rather buy items at a higher cost to please your customers (and keep your store up and running), or buy dirt cheap knock-off items and get tons of negative reviews?
The answer should be simple: stay away from fake products.
Selling jewelry online can get pretty competitive, as we talked about before. It's vital to think of a way to differentiate yourself from the hundreds of other sellers before you get started!
Selling fair trade items is a great way to do this. Fair trade jewelry is made by artisans who work under safe and humane working conditions.
These workers are also are paid a fair wage for their work. Another great thing about fair trade jewelry is the fact that it’s also made without child labor and is crafted using environmentally sustainable methods!
If you labeled your jewelry as “Fair Trade” and explained what that meant to your customers, they’d go crazy over it. Knowing that they’re buying jewelry from a reputable source is something they’ll pride themselves on.
Facebook campaigns will quickly become you best friend. Because you’re able to target consumers according to certain demographics (age, gender, and location) you’ll be able to reach a multitude of people whether they’re currently connected to your business, or not.
You’re also able to set a strict daily budget as well as select how long you want your advertising campaign to run. For more help on Facebook ads, check out this post by KlientBoost.
Sharing posts on social media is vital to keeping your business in the loop, but you have to share content daily!
This means you have to constantly post pictures, blog posts, and simple status updates on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Take some time at the beginning of the week to gather some photos, quotes, or product shots and schedule them for different times during the week. Once you get good at this, try to schedule for two weeks at a time. (You can use a tool like Buffer to do this on the cheap.)
You’ll end up saving a lot of time by putting posts in the que. Doing this will ensure that you’ll never forget to post again.
While you obviously don’t want to overwhelm buyers with huge paragraphs for each item, you’ll want concise and descriptive information for each piece of jewelry.
Most people want to know what they're getting ahead of time and, if anything is unclear, most won't reach out to ask questions.
By providing the materials used in designs up front, your customers will know exactly what to look forward to. You can even add why you love the piece!
More information also includes making sure your policies are easy to find so there's no confusion about returns, exchanges, etc., later on.
Finally, strong product descriptions can improve your store’s search rankings.
Without further ado, here are four up to date jewelry niches to dig into!
This website carries affordable fashion jewelry for, well, everyone! They carry nearly every staple piece of jewelry you can think of at a great price.
Salamander jewelry is more or less an alternative wholesaler. They carry body jewelry such as nose rings, eyebrow rings, belly-button rings, tongue rings, and more.
Can you guess what this wholesaler carries? You guessed it… Silver plated jewelry! They’ve been in business for over 15 years and are well trusted by many.
Remember when we said that fair trade jewelry was incredibly popular? This wholesaler boutique offers tons of fair trade jewelry at a low cost. Their jewelry is unique and will help you stand out from your competition!
We’ve talked about why you should sell jewelry online, how to do it correctly, what to avoid when selling products, and even gave you a few wholesale jewelry suppliers to get started.
I’m afraid that it’s now time for us to part ways. Before we do though, let’s go over some of the most important details when it comes to selling jewelry online.
Now it’s time for you to spread your wings and fly! Or at least, spread your wings and create a kick-ass jewelry store. Have fun!