Though retail stores over the country—and world—are starting to (cautiously) open their doors to customers amid the pandemic, many have opted to take their businesses online, either in part or wholly.
Jeweler Stephanie Gottlieb is no stranger to the digisphere. Though the designer and curator runs an in-person showroom in New York City (appointments are currently being held remotely), Gottlieb’s successful Instagram presence makes her business a natural fit for online sales, both on the social media platform and on the store’s website, stephaniegottlieb.com. This was impressive pre-COVID-19; now it’s prudent.
What are the top three most popular styles you’ve sold over the last six months?
Our top three sellers have all been bracelets, funnily enough: the Slider bangle, the I Am bracelet, and Roberto Demeglio’s Aura bracelets.
How do you think the pandemic has affected jewelry trends, if at all?
We’re finding that our clients are still shopping. The classic category is performing very well, and per usual personalization is always popular. Going into fall, I think we’ll see a lot of enamel. For me, color is always uplifting, and I think people are resonating with the bright pops of happiness in their jewelry.
Are there any trends that come to mind that have come out of this quarantine period, and why do you think they appeal to customers right now?
I would say that overall, ring shopping is down, largely because of the inconvenience of wearing rings with the constant use of hand sanitizer and gloves! Bracelets are up big time for us, and I think it’s because of the ease of wear and ability to just leave them on all the time.
How has the pandemic—and subsequent quarantine—impacted your business?
Luckily our business has not been drastically impacted in a negative way. There were definitely a few weeks where it was difficult to run “business as usual” because all of our factories were closed worldwide, starting in Asia, then in Europe, and finally in the U.S. But now that production has resumed, we feel confident in the direction our e-comm business has taken. We are fortunate that we were set up to work with clients remotely; we have scheduled Zoom meetings and arranged for consignment packages. As we go into the fall, we are pushing to create a more seamless experience for the shopper so that they can feel comfort in shopping from home. Production will be slower due to our factories trying to maintain social distance and safety measures for their workers, so this is a huge consideration for us going into holiday. We are going to be back-stocking more inventory than we normally would so that we’re prepared for holiday deliveries.
Do you have any advice for retailers—particularly brick-and-mortar ones—wanting to take their business online?
I think it’s important that the client gets (as close to) the same experience on your website as they would in-store. One of the more useful features of a website is the chat function—this allows the client to get the immediate attention they’re seeking when making a purchase.
If there’s one style a retailer should have in stock for the holiday season, what would that be?
Rainbow! I’m so excited to see that the rainbow trend has spread industry-wide. This continues to be a top-selling category for us in 2020.
(Top: Image courtesy of Stephanie Gottlieb)Follow JCK on Instagram: @jckmagazine
Follow JCK on Twitter: @jckmagazine
Follow JCK on Facebook: @jckmagazine