Nail Your Niche: How Retailers Can Zero In on Their Jewelry Sales Zones

Half a century ago, Pearlman’s ­Jewelers in Battle Creek, Mich., was the classic local brick-and-mortar store. It featured a wide variety of fine jewelry, clocks, watches, and gifts that would appeal to the entire community—something for every life stage, from birth to marriage to retirement.But as high-end, brand-focused designers exploded onto the jewelry scene in the mid-1990s, second-generation retailer Bill Pearlman began to develop a passion for showcasing young and talented artists he thought represented the future of the jewelry business.“My background is in fine arts, so focusing on jewelry designers is a specialty that I immediately gravitated to,” Pearlman explains. At the same time, e-commerce was also moving front and center, and Pearlman jumped into the online game early, setting up a website in 1995.The result was a complete shift in Pearlman’s business model. H

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