How To Start a Jewelry Business
We have been in the jewelry business for over five years and we are now selling over a million dollars worth of jewelry every year. On this page and on our course we give a blueprint on how to start a successful jewelry business. Here are the main things considered on this page:
- Selecting the right niche
- Importing jewelry vs manufacturing
- Creating an e-commerce store
How to select the right niche for your jewelry business
1. Buyer persona
Before you start your jewelry business its a good idea to think who your customers are going to be. If you say "everybody" you are going to run in to some problems with inventory management, capital, marketing etc. It would be great to start a new Amazon, but just think how long they have been doing this and even they started with a smaller niche and then grew. Listed below are some things to consider when deciding who your customer
Age: You should consider what age group your customers are going to be in. Some jewelry is “ageless”, but a lot of items are worn a lot more by younger people and not a lot of older people have as much piercings as younger generations. Also consider the paying power of the age group your customers will be in? Are they going to be able to afford the jewelry you are offering or will they consider it “cheap” and therefore skip the purchase even though they like what it looks like?
Gender: There are a lot of unisex jewelry products and these are great if there is another niche that your catalogue focuses on. It might be wooden stud earrings, and a lot of men can become your customers as well. If you make hook earrings it is probably better to focus your designs and marketing on female audiences.
Wealth: What is the buying power of your customers? Are you going to focus on luxury items that have very expensive materials and/or very expensive brands? Or are you going to focus on more affordable jewelry and cheaper materials. We recommend to always use quality materials, no matter which buyer persona you are focusing on!
Culture/Religion: It is good to consider the cultural and religious aspects of your store and your items. A lot of jewelry has a cultural or religious heritage, but the main point is to not choose what you are going to focus on and its important to not offend anyone too much. Your jewelry can be edgy and provocative without being offensive.
Styles: People have so many different styles and you can focus on one or several distinct styles in your store. It is good to consider how well the different styles mix and to make sure that they are not too different to drive off customers who are interested in one or the other. If you offer a style of jewelry that is consistent, it is likely that once you have some happy customers they will talk about your store to their friends and keep coming back themselves.
Trends: Using trends to define your buyer persona can be quite tricky as trends tend to come and go and predicting the next big thing can be a challenge. You should consider if your basic buyer persona is more of a trend setter or someone who buys the jewelry when everyone is buying them, or even if they are late to the trend? Especially with wholesale it can be hard to keep inventory when the trend is booming and on the other hand a large order can arrive late and be left in your hands after the trend is over. If you are following the latest trends in your jewelry lines it is good to get to know your wholesalers return policy for cases like these.
Hobbies: People like to show off their hobbies and even jewelry can be used to do this. We have sold a lot of hobby related jewelry whether its equestrian sports, dog hobbies or sport related.
Pets: There are few things that people love more than their pets. We have a large selection of different pet earrings and necklaces. For example, we sell earrings with over 100 different dog breeds.
2. Easy choice is to start a store which has your own or your partners style of jewelry.
Why focus on your own style? Because it is something that you know well and its something you are more passionate about. You will be better at judging which products will work and which wont work. You are also more likely to follow more social media and news stories about that niche if you are personally interested in it. Think about all the different occasions when you or your partner wears jewelry. You could even focus on one of these occasions and have a large enough niche.
3. Price range
a. Pricing and margins
You should get to know your margins very thoroughly and before deciding on buying or manufacturing any product you should calculate the costs of purchase or manufacturing, assembly, storage, etc. Aiming for at least 10x the cost of goods is a good place to start.
You might feel that its too much, but when you do the math and take out all the costs, taxes etc, you will see that even that is not always enough.
Like they always say in shark tank, choose whether you sell expensive or affordable products. Do not stay in the middle or try to do both!
B. Don’t try to do a general jewelry store.
It is better to start with a narrower niche as trying to do a general jewelry store will take a lot of capital and effort to get running. A lot of large e-commerce companies operate their first years with no profits or even with losses, but the thing is that they have a plan and a lot funding to offer them a runway to get the whole thing running.
Starting with a smaller niche makes inventory management and scaling the business easier! You won't need as much capital to gather inventory and it will be easier to manage it and collect items as well.
C. Start with a narrow niche and expand it.
Like said before, start with a narrower niche, know your margins and your buyers and you can expand later.
Importing jewelry vs manufacturing
1. Where can you buy jewelry or jewelry parts?
You can either buy jewelry from the manufacturer or from a wholesaler. There are good and bad sides to both options and we will go through them some of them here. It is always good to have several sources for both jewelry and for jewelry parts. If your source decides they will not sell to you anymore or they go bankrupt or even if their inventory just gets sold out, then you have other options to stock up your inventory and keep selling. Nothing is worse than running out of things to sell when the customers are knocking at the virtual door of your e-commerce store.
2. Brand wholesalers or manufacturers.
You can buy jewelry from known brands or from white label manufacturers. Using a white label manufacturer means that the jewelry is not branded. The jewelry you buy from them will kind of be part of your brand.
There are benefits to using popular brands, but there are also some problems with them. As we mentioned in the pricing part of the niche consideration, popular jewelry brands are more expensive and your margins are likely to be smaller. Popular brands can also be more picky with their resellers and you can get in to trouble if a big brand stops selling to you all of a sudden. All the marketing and SEO work you have done to sell with those brand names and trademarks will be next to useless at that point. On the other hand if you rise in the search engines with a brand name it can be a very good reason for the brand to keep you as a reseller.
3. Manufacturing jewelry
There is a large number of methods and materials used to make jewelry. You can make jewelry by hand or with the help of machinery and casting.
1. Crafting with hand tools
Artesanal jewelry making has always been based on using your own hands and tools to mold materials in to jewelry products. Handmade jewelry can be made from a large variety of materials and with so many different methods. Handmade jewelry can be beautiful and highly respected, but there can be some problems with it as well.
For scaling a business there are several problems with handmade jewelry. Often it takes time to make one item and depending on the skills and materials used the value and price of the item can vary a lot! The quality and properties of the jewelry items can also be different from one piece to the next. This can result in returns and bad reviews.
2. Laser cutting
Laser cutting is a method of cutting wood, metals, leather, plastics etc with a powerful laser. The method allows fast production of jewelry items such as pendants or earrings. With a well maintained laser cutter you will have very small variation between the items and the materials can be quite cheap.
There is a large variety of different kinds of laser cutters and their price range is really large. The good thing is that you can find really affordable laser cutter that works great with most materials you will be using.
You can also use the laser cutting method for making your jewerlry without ever owning a laser cutter. There are companies such as ponoko.com that will do the cutting for you, for a small fee.
3D-printing is used in several ways in jewelry making. 3D-printing can be used to make finished products or molds for jewelry casting. One of the problems with 3D-printed jewelry is that the price of the items can rise because of the higher costs of the machines and materials. You can use a company like shapeways.com or weerg.com for ordering the 3D-printed jewelry if you don't want to buy yourself a 3D-printer.
Casting is a method where a wax model is replaced by a molten metal inside a mold. Casting allows making several items at once, but casting takes time as each item takes more work with polishing etc before it can sold.
Creating an e-commerce store
There are several ways to create an e-commerce store.
You can use a hosting platform such as Shopify, Magento or Woocommerce or you can code it yourself, or pay someone to do that for you. We have used Shopify to make all our online store ourselves and you can do it too!
We use Shopify because its easy to use, both when setting up and customizing the store as well as when running it. Having a Shopify store make it faster for us to handle the orders and results in happier customers as well. Using Shopify also makes it easier for us to rise in the search engine rankings.
With Shopify we don’t need to worry about our store crashing as they take care of the server side. Shopify is also secure for both us and the customers.
Shopify is not the cheapest option but the price-functionality ratio is very good and you definitely get a lot for what you are paying!
Your products are the most important thing in your store!
It is important to optimize your product photography and write descriptive product texts.
Shopify stores use themes that creates the store structure and design. You should invest a good theme from a start because it will probably save you a lot of time and money in the long run. You should check that it has clear navigation, fast loading product pages with good design and that it looks great on desktop and mobile. We use Warehouse theme from Maestroo and it is great for stores that have larger inventory.
Photographing your jewelry
Good photos are great for your customers and for selling, but also for rising in the search rankings. Main thing is to have photos that show the product well to the customer! Therefore its good to have several photos. Having a photo with a white background is good for search engine rankings and also to the customer.
We also recommend having a photo of the product where a model is wearing it to show how the item looks like when worn and also to show the size.
To further optimize your photos you can use an app in the store or a separate software to downsize the images before loading them into the store. We use Guetzli and RIOT software.
A white background works for search engine optimization as they are smaller in size even before optimizing.
This way if you have several photos you should have the one with a white background showing in the collection and the other photos in the product itself.
Writing compelling product and collection descriptions
A good product description is helpful for the customer. You should not add keywords or write things just for search engines. The algorithms that google uses will appreciate the content when it is good for the customers as well.
You can do some keyword research and write information that is relevant to your customers and your products.
How to advertise your jewelry business
You should then post at least 9-12 posts on your Facebook and Instagram pages. These posts should be well thought and have great images of your products. You should also include product links to your Facebook posts. In Instagram you should think about which hashtags to use and include your store link to the Instagram page bio.
Read more about how to use hashtags from here:
You should keep posting at least twice a week on both channels. We post daily and you should also start making Instagram stories for your followers. You can share information about new products, any sales that you have going on, give a sneak peek into what happens in the background of your store etc. Let them start to know you and this way customers will trust you more and keep buying.
Facebook is a great marketing channel for jewelry e-commerce business. Before you start advertising in Facebook and Instagram, you first need to create a Facebook Business Manager account for your business.
How to signup for Facebook Business Manager:
Then you need to create Facebook and Instagram business pages.
How to create a Facebook page for your business:
How to create an Instagram business page:
After that you can create an ad account inside your Business Manager and install a Facebook Pixel to your store.
Add an ad account inside Business Manager:
Install Facebook Pixel to your Shopify store:
Facebook ad strategy for a start
First, you need to get a 500-1000 page likes to your business Facebook page. This will show your upcoming customers that there are other people that like your store. This creates trust.
You should start with Facebook Page likes ads. Create 3-5 ad sets with really tight targeting. Think about who is the core audience that want to buy your jewelry? You don’t want cheap page likes, you want highly relevant people to like you Facebook page.
Then you just try find relevant interests on the Interest targeting section when you create your Page likes ads. After you have gained those 500-1000 Page likes, you should switch your Facebook ads to Conversion ads.
When you are just beginning, you only need a simple campaign structure that separates Cold audiences and Warm audiences each other. Cold audiences are just people that never heard from you and Warm audiences are your store visitors, buyers, people on your e-mail list etc.
Your Facebook campaign structure for a start should be something like this:
- Cold audience campaign
- Lookalike 1% Buyers EXLUDE Warm audiences
- Lookalike 1% Visitors last 180 days EXLUDE Warm audiences
- Interest 1 EXLUDE Lookalike AND Warm audiences
- Interest 2 EXLUDE Lookalike AND Warm audiences
- Interest 3 EXLUDE Lookalike AND Warm audiences
- Warm audience campaign
- Facebook and Instagram Engagement audiences EXLUDE E-mail list and Buyers
- E-mail list EXLUDE Buyers last 30 days
- Retarget campaign
- Visitors last 30 days EXLUDE Buyers last 30 days
- Buyers last 180 days EXLUDE Buyers last 30 days (Show your past customers new products or current deals from products that they haven’t bought.)
- Retarget DPA campaign last 7 Day Visitors
If you don’t know how to set this up, we will be showing you how to do this in step by step, inside our online course.
Email marketing is great for getting repeat traffic and revenue. There is a little cost to using a professional email service like Klaviyo or Mailchimp, but it really is worth it!
Collecting emails from potential customers and sending emails from your previous customers works really well for sales AND for the customers who are interested in your products!
You can automate a lot of the work with email marketing. Abandoned cart emails are a great reminder to customers who have almost bought from you. You should also have a welcome series of emails for customers offering a discount for their next purchase, and another for people who have bought several times!
You can also use your email automations to win back customers who havent been active for a while.
The imporant thing is to review, survey and tweak the email automations when necessary. You should also have weekly or monthly newsletters for information on new products, blog posts and deals.
Here are few E-mails you should be sending:
- Abandoned cart e-mails
- Welcome series to new customers with discount to next purchase
- Repeat customer e-mail series
- Win-back e-mail series
- Review and survey e-mail series
- Information about new products or blog posts
- Weekly deals
Here you can see the first steps to take with optimizing your store for the search engines. These steps will help you rise in Google and other search engine rankings and get organic traffic to your store.
Make sure your store is indexed in Google and make it easier for Google to read your pages
There are a lot of pages in the internet and Google is constantly going through them and checking them. This is called crawling and you have to make sure that google can crawl through your website.
Once the store has been crawled through, Google will index it. So before you start optimizing the store or building backlinks or anything like that, you have to make sure that the store is indexed in Google.
Once the site has been indexed Google will start to consider the content of the store, check the user experiences of the people who click to the site etc to start to rank the store in the search engine results. The more relevant the content is the higher the store will be ranked for the keywords and search phrases.
Make sure the user experience is great!
The reason you are making a store is probably to sell people jewelry. These people, your customers, are the ones who should enjoy your website and get the most out of it. The user experience should always be positive. First thing to check is the page-speed. The page should work fast, nobody wants to wait around for a page to load up like they used to when we used dial-up modems. The customers should find everything easily, from a structured list of collections and with a search feature. Your site should also be very mobile friendly as these days more people are online shopping with their phones than with their computers. Google looks at the behavior of the people who visit your site and if they stay in, check more products, look at videos and if they buy your products, Google will see that this is a store that they will rank higher.
Create quality content
To make sure that the people who visit your site will have a reason to stay and shop in your store, you should have quality content. This includes good and compelling text in the product descriptions, collections and bog posts. You should also have nice photos and videos showing your products and maybe how its made etc. When there is quality content the customers and Google will both like your store. Also when you make quality content, its more likely that people will want to share the posts and products with their friends and followers!
Start a blog related to your products
Post quality content that is relevant to your niche and your products. This will help you rise in google rankings and also it is interesting content for your customers and readers. Someone who reads your blog and likes the content is quite potential to become your customer at some point. It is important to keep posting to the blog as real rise in the search engine rankings can take up to a year or even longer depending on the keywords and competition.
Sponsored social media posts
- Find influencers and bloggers related to your niche
- You can negotiate affiliate deals with them or a fixed price per post. You can also get posts or reviews by giving influencers free products.
- You will get traffic from these posts to your website. You will also get backlinks from blog posts that will help you rise in Google rankings.
As stated by law, we can not and do not make any guarantees about your own ability to get results or earn any money with our ideas, information, programs or strategies. We have worked incredibly hard to achieve our results and cannot guarantee that you are willing to put in the same amount of work. We are here to help by giving you our greatest strategies to move you forward, faster. However, nothing on this page or any of our websites or emails is a promise or guarantee of future earnings. Any financial numbers referenced here, or on any of our sites or emails, are simply estimates or projections or past results, and should not be considered exact, actual or as a promise of potential earnings - all numbers are illustrative only.