Source Credibility

Source credibility can be the difference between making a sale and not even getting a chance to make a presentation. Retail jewelers rely on their ability to be perceived as trustworthy. When source credibility is high, the information presented by a jewelry sales associate is perceived to be useful, thereby facilitating the transfer of knowledge. Jewelry customers who receive sales presentations and demonstrations attempt to assess whether the information provides an accurate representation and whether the source is knowledgeable.  Done correctly, shoppers view the information as imparted knowledge which is perceived as useful.  Successful jewelry sales associates know how to create source credibility. When source credibility is low, jewelry shoppers will perceive a source’s information to be less persuasive and will discount their knowledge.


There are three dominate factors that underlie source credibility: expertise, trustworthiness, and likability. Jewelry expertise is perceived as specialized knowledge that sales associates possess to back up their claims. Trustworthiness is the related to how sales associates are perceived to be objective and honest as a source of information.  Likability describes the attractiveness of a sales associate by shoppers. How do you promote your expertise in the jewelry industry? Do you use degrees earned in education or certifications or memberships in industry associations? What about repurposing industry articles or other media coverage to show customers how third parties view your expertise?


Source credibility can influence knowledge transfer indirectly through arduous relationships.  Consider the attitudes that shoppers might have as recipients of information provided by sales associates and their willingness to communicate and collaborate with customers.  Sales associates must develop communication strategies and tactics to lessen arduousness relationships with shoppers. The more credible the sales associate, the less arduous the relationship.  Credibility can be enhanced through messages delivered by attractive or popular sources that draw attention and recall of contect, which is why so many jewelry advertisements use celebrities in advertisements or as spokespersons.  Highly successful jewelry sales associates are effective due to their high source of credibility and because they know how to personify key product attributes. Promote your expertise, build relationships based on trustworthiness and be improve your likability with customers to enhance your source credibility.