Q: “Are mobile websites part of your Internet marketing strategy?”
—Donald Smith, owner, E.M. Smith Jewelers, Chillicothe, Ohio
“It’s always important to stay innovative in order to relate to current times and customers. I’m part of the third generation of the family, and I’m in our target demographic. It helps to see what people my age are doing to look at engagement rings or watches—it’s mostly on the Web or phones. We’ve had great success with our iPad and iPhone app. We had over 1,000 downloads in the past few weeks. It’s pretty incredible because not only are people in Michigan downloading it, people all over the country are. We update the inventory on the app every few weeks. We have a feature on the app that is kind of like a lifestyle magazine. It was updated the day after the Academy Awards with images of what celebrities wore on the red carpet. It’s been great to bring it on our showroom floor and show [customers] how to download it.”
—Anthony Ahee, director of marketing and social media, Edmund T. Ahee Jewelers, Grosse Pointe Woods, Mich.
“When we had our main website redesigned in December, we asked our webmaster to use Magento, an open-source e-commerce platform. In looking ahead to the future, we knew we wanted to have an e-commerce site and a mobile-enhanced site. Using this platform gave us the flexibility to grow our business. What I like most about the Magento platform is that when the migration does occur, it automatically adjusts navigation methods, making the e-commerce and other sections easier to use on a mobile device. What surprised me was how inexpensive these technologies are compared to many years ago, when retailers had to pay $25,000 for an e-commerce website.”
—Lee Krombholz, owner, Krombholz Jewelers, Cincinnati
“Last year, when we redesigned our website, we decided to launch a mobile-enhanced site, too. We kept the mobile site simple and easy to use with an emphasis on our locations, directions, hours, and contact info; we give customers only what they need to find us immediately. But we decided to do more mobile-device marketing. Across the street, we have a Cabela’s superstore that’s visited by 6 million shoppers each year. We’re exploring using Bluetooth technology to send an automatic text message to people within a one- to two-mile radius of the store. This would allow us to get impulse purchases from a small portion of these Cabela’s shoppers. This is something we’re excited to launch.”
—Mallory Murphy, marketing director, Murphy Jewelers, Pottsville, Pa.
The Orinda News
“Not yet, but they absolutely will be! We are in the process of building a new Web page for a greater presence online. We pulled our ad money out of more traditional ads like Yellow Pages—where the 40s and under don’t even look anymore—and are putting it into online advertising. I get my Jewelers’ Security Alliance updates on my phone and click through to its website to read. I’m not the techiest guy in the world, but I like the convenience of reading updates on my phone, and would like visitors to my site to have up-to-date information about our goods and services as easily as I do through industry websites. As a fourth-generation jeweler, I am slowly but surely bringing our store into the 21st century.”
—David Berryhill, vice president and owner, Morrison’s Jewelers, Orinda, Calif.
“We will look into one. It’s another source of information that everyone is using. While I find it easier to get the information I want on a computer, my salespeople—many of them younger than others on staff—say a mobile site would be a good tool for us. They tend to use their phones.”
—David Clay, president, David Clay Jewelers, San Francisco