Retailing Insight May/June 2017 | Inspired Living Issue : Page 50

Up your margins and add sparkle to your store with crystals, rocks, and gemstones! by Margaret Ann Lembo S hopping for crystals, minerals, and stones has been one of my favorite jobs for the past 30 years. In fact, my journey into rock shopping began even before opening my store, The Crystal Garden. My business started by selling stones to friends and family at living room crystal parties. Beautiful arrangements of gems adorned many dining room tables during these events, and now customers enjoy the rock-shopping experience daily in my store. In fact, sales of tumbled and specimen stones make up 30 percent of my store’s sales. The initial experience of buying gemstones for resale can be overwhelming, but I’ve put together recommendations for you honed from my years of shopping for crystal and gemstone inventory. 50 May/June 2017 | retailinginsight.com

Jewels Of The Aisle

Margaret Ann Lembo

Up your margins and add sparkle to your store with crystals, rocks, and gemstones!

Shopping for crystals, minerals, and stones has been one of my favorite jobs for the past 30 years. In fact, my journey into rock shopping began even before opening my store, The Crystal Garden. My business started by selling stones to friends and family at living room crystal parties. Beautiful arrangements of gems adorned many dining room tables during these events, and now customers enjoy the rock-shopping experience daily in my store. In fact, sales of tumbled and specimen stones make up 30 percent of my store’s sales.

The initial experience of buying gemstones for resale can be overwhelming, but I’ve put together recommendations for you honed from my years of shopping for crystal and gemstone inventory.

Where to start?

If you’re ready to carry crystals, minerals, and stones in your store, I recommend starting with tumbled stones, jewelry, and a few specimen pieces. Certain bestsellers make sense to always keep in stock: amethyst, aquamarine, black tourmaline, carnelian, citrine, green aventurine, hematite, rose quartz, and selenite.

In my experience, profit margins increase with the sale of tumbled stones, and as you observe your customer response, you will know if or when it is time to carry special clusters or large gemstones. Large clusters and geodes make a statement and add to any display. Depending on your clientele, these larger statement pieces may take a bit longer to sell, so the number of expensive specimens in your inventory depends on your budget.

The selection process

Imagine for a moment you’ve just walked into a rock dealer’s showroom or warehouse. There are rows and rows of shelves and tables filled with boxes and flats of all types of crystals, minerals, and stones. How do you make the most of your inventory shopping experience? Here are a few pointers based on my own selection process:

• Arrive with a gemstone wish list and be sure to bring water and snacks. This could take hours, and the energy of so many gems in one place can affect you!

• Walk the entire showroom or warehouse first and just look.

• Make a mental note and/or write down ideas of what you want to purchase.

• Make another round through the showroom/warehouse and start making your selections.

• Use your intuition as you make your choices. Once you’ve had this shopping experience a few times, you will be able to use historical sales numbers combined with your intuition.

• Choose merchandise you feel will sell quickly and often. Choose the gems you think are beautiful, as it is likely your customers will feel the same way. Plus, it’s always easier to sell merchandise you love!

• Buy a minimum of three—and preferably six to 12—of each type of specimen or stone you want to carry. The deeper you go in the stock of a particular item, the faster it will sell. Experience has shown me that if just one or two of an item are left, it takes longer to sell. I’ve actually heard customers tell me they “don’t want to take my last one.”

Once you’ve done this process a few times, mix it up and add different gems, styles, and shapes to your buying choices. Based on my historical sales numbers, I personally focus on two main categories when I am shopping for inventory: tumbled stones and specimens.

Tumbled stones: A perennial bestseller

Tumbled stones are my number one bestseller—they bring customers back again and again. Customers can stow these little gems in their pocket, pillowcase, coin purse, and bowls throughout their home and office. Tumbled stones have a retail price of $1 to $15, with an average price of $3. This price point is an easy purchase for your customers that keeps them returning.

Be sure to place information tags with each display of tumbled stones. At my store, our tags include the cash-register code, the price for inventory purposes, and a list of the stone’s healing qualities.

Information tags are easy to make in Microsoft Word. Simply create a three-column table and repeat the information in each cell until you fill the page. Be sure to include your brand logo and website to encourage repeat business—it’s good marketing to keep your logo and website in front of your customers as a reminder to come back soon!

At my store, we place a container of small plastic zip bags next to our tumbled-stone display with instructions to place the information tag in a bag with the code and price facing out, along with the stone being purchased. This provides ease at checkout, plus the customer will be able to identify the stone later after they leave the store.

MY TOP 10 BEST-SELLING TUMBLED STONES

1.Rose quartz

2.Lapis lazuli

3.Black tourmaline

4.Aquamarine

5.Carnelian

6.Selenite

7.Amethyst

8.Green aventurine

9.Citrine

10.Hematite

Specimens

Specimens include individual crystal clusters and unique gemstones, typically in their raw or natural state. As with tumbled stones, place a stack of information tags on the shelf with the display to encourage sales and to identify the specimens. Typically with specimens, though, a price tag is placed on each individual specimen, not on the stone information tags, as specimen prices vary.

The best pricing for specimens can be obtained by buying a whole flat or lot versus buying just one or two of a given stone. It has been my experience that the more stones available, even by category, the higher the sales and the faster the turnover of that item.

MY TOP 10 BEST-SELLING SPECIMENS

1.Clear quartz points from one to six inches

2.Amethyst points and clusters

3.Black tourmaline natural points

4.Peacock ore

5.Green calcite in natural chunks

6.Orange calcite in natural chunks

7.Selenite “sticks,” “wands,” and “logs”

8.Kyanite “blades” (thin, flat pieces)

9.Fluorite spheres, octahedrons, obelisks, and wands

10.Rose quartz in all forms, especially points and hearts

All shapes and sizes —and colors, too!

Crystals come in various shapes and sizes, either directly from the earth in their natural state or polished and cut into various geometric configurations. Gemstones are especially delightful set in jewelry, amulets, and pendulums.

In addition, my experience is that jewel-toned rocks sell very well. The different colors and effects are created by the rocks being radiated, heated, or dyed. Children and adults alike are naturally drawn to these rocks, as well as such man-made stones as goldstone and bismuth.

Many stones are cut and polished into shapes, and hearts in particular are proven bestsellers. Heart-shaped stones help you approach whatever you are working on from the center of yourself—your heart chakra. They also help focus attention on attracting romance or more love into your life, another reason they are favored by shoppers. Keep a good inventory of heartshaped stones, from half an inch to three inches wide, and watch your gem sales soar.

MY TOP 10 BEST-SELLING SHAPES

1.Hearts

2.Natural points

3.Polished wands

4.Spheres

5.Clusters

6.Lamps

7.Chunks and/or natural formation

8.Palm stones

9.Word stones

10.Slices

Best-selling gemstone jewelry

Gemstone bracelet sales in my store have soared in the past five years. I attribute this to the placement next to the checkout counter of a full-size spinner rack with over 100 styles of stone bracelets. The display is arranged by the colors of the rainbow, with three to 12 of each bracelet. It is well worth the investment, as the turnover of these bracelets is remarkable—the bestsellers usually retail under $20. I recommend reordering every 30 days or so to keep your display well stocked.

Another bestseller is hematite rings. Keep a bowl of these rings by your cash register as a point-of-sale item. The price range is anywhere from $4 to $6. Many of my customers buy multiple rings for themselves and their friends, because they are used to help relieve stress, increase protection, and lower blood pressure.

MY TOP 10 BEST-SELLING BRACELETS

1.Carnelian

2.Black agate or black onyx

3.Rose quartz

4.Hematite

5.Amethyst

6.Gold tiger’s eye

7.Turquoise

8.Citrine

9.Green aventurine

10.Amber

Gemstone bottom line: Love, money, health, and safety

Along with conversations with my customers, my historical sales figures indicate people want gemstones to help them with these top four life issues:

1.Love and good relationships

2.Prosperity and abundance

3.Good health

4.Protection and safety

It’s not surprising that my top-selling gemstones address these same life issues. I recommend you carry plenty of crystals, specimens, and tumbled stones that help people attract their true heart’s desires for love, prosperity, good health, and protection—you’ll likely increase your sales exponentially!

■ MARGARET ANN LEMBO is author of Chakra Awakening; The Essential Guide to Crystals, Minerals, and Stones; Angel Gemstone Oracle Cards; and Color Your Life With Crystals. She is also the owner of The Crystal Garden, a book and gift store/spiritual center in southeast Florida celebrating 27 years in business.

Quick Crystal Insights

You don’t have to be a geologist to appreciate our planet’s sparkle-tastic creations, but science is fun! Did you know:

• Crystallography is the scientific study of crystals and how they form.

• Crystals form when molten rock or dissolved minerals cool and solidify over time. Pressure and temperature cause their atoms to bind to each other in highly ordered, symmetrical shapes.

• There are seven basic crystal shapes: cubic (e.g., pyrite and diamonds), hexagonal (e.g., rubies and emeralds), monoclinic (e.g., moonstone and kunzite), orthorhombic (e.g., topaz and tanzanite), tetragonal (e.g., zircon and apophylite), triclinic (e.g., labradorite and turquoise), and trigonal (e.g., amethyst and sapphires).

• The color of crystals is determined by the minerals they contain and the wavelength of light those minerals absorb. For example, amethyst gets its purple color from the presence of iron in its crystal structure.

Read the full article at http://bluetoad.com/article/Jewels+Of+The+Aisle/2777802/406312/article.html.

Previous Page  Next Page


Publication List
Using a screen reader? Click Here