Despite Covid causing absolute chaos all over the world, it seems to have affected jewellery sales in a somewhat positive way. According to a study conducted by the Plumb Club, 30% of the consumers in a recent poll reported that they had bought more jewellery since the beginning of the pandemic than before.  

Lawrence Hess, executive director of Plumb Club, stated: “the pendulum definitely swung from experimental to material purchases.” He went on to say further, that in his personal opinion, the jewellery industry is doing significantly better now, than before Covid-19.  

The Plumb Club Industry and Market Insights 2021 (the title of the survey) also discovered that 49% of people purchased the same amount of jewellery as before, while 20% of consumers purchased less during the pandemic.  

How Were People Buying Jewellery If The Shops Were Closed? 

Many brick-and-mortar shops were closed for a long time, so consumers turned to buying jewellery online, with 72% of them saying that having to spend so much time at home, encouraged them to buy more jewellery than they did before. The reason for this, apparently, was because so many people worked from home and attended virtual meetings, and 41% of them wanted to wear jewellery to these meetings, that could be seen and admired onscreen!  

According to Michael O’Connor, marketing director of Plumb Club, the Covid-19 pandemic increased the trend to digital spending significantly, because consumers had no option except to do their shopping online.  

In spite of this, however, it was also determined in the poll, that all things being equal, almost 2/3 - 63% of the respondents, preferred to shop for their jewellery in a proper brick-and-mortar store, with 25% of those preferring independent jewellers in particular. Only 28% of the participants preferred buying their jewellery online. 

What Was The Biggest Influence That Encouraged Purchases? 

The number one influence driving purchases, was the retailer’s websites, according to 33% of the respondents, with the influence of family and friends at 30% being the second largest, and advertising on social media, at 14%, being ranked third.  

This, according to O’Connor, proves that retailers must get their websites in order, and the same applies to social media.  

What About Jewellery Prices? 

The survey also determined that, on average, the price of jewellery, as with most other things, was significantly higher than in the years prior to the pandemic. In addition to this, 57% of those taking part in the survey, said that it was the availability of financing, that would be an enormous influence as to whether or not they decided to buy jewellery. This was one of the most surprising findings to those conducting the survey! 

What Were People Looking For When Purchasing Jewellery? 

It was the quality of the jewellery that was most important to 31% of consumers, 23% were influenced by the design of the piece, with 17% going for uniqueness, and only 16% mentioning the price.  

According to Plumb Club, the things that matter most to consumers has changed dramatically with the Covid-19 pandemic. With death more of a possibility in their lives, people's psyches have changed, with more of them looking for more meaningful, high-quality items.  

Why Were People Buying Jewellery During The Pandemic?  

As far as why they were buying jewellery during Covid, 48% of the respondents said that they bought pieces of jewellery for special occasions, 23% said that they didn’t need a reason to buy jewellery, 12% said that they bought as a reward for themselves, 8% bought similar jewellery that they had seen celebrities wearing in magazines, and 8% said they bought jewellery items that were similar to those worn by their friends.  

In addition to this, 72% of the respondents said that they would be more than happy to pay higher prices for jewellery pieces that were resourced sustainably, and 26% of them saying that they would be willing to pay significantly more for such a jewellery item.  

Does Social Responsibility And Sustainability Matter? 

Covid has made those in the jewellery industry feel as if they are in a cocoon, and that social responsibility and sustainability do not matter. However, this is not just lip service! These things DO matter very much to the consumer, and they are more than willing to pay for them! 

With Lock Down, Where Do People Wear Their Jewellery? 

About 65% of consumers said that they normally wear jewellery while they’re at home. Surprisingly, 44% of them said that lock down had no influence whatsoever, on how often they wore their jewellery, and 23% reporting that they actually wore jewellery more often during the lock down. Only 33% of the consumers said that they did not wear jewellery as often during the pandemic.  

What Type Of Jewellery Did People Wear At Home? 

As to the type of jewellery that consumers were wearing while they were at home, 39% said that they wore rings mostly. 62% of consumers, however, said that they bought necklaces and earrings to wear at home to enhance their virtual and online image.  

In Conclusion 

Despite the Covid-19 pandemic and lock down causing chaos everywhere and just about bringing the entire world to a standstill, the jewellery industry has managed to weather the storm.  

The fact that brick-and-mortar jewellery shops were closed did not deter jewellery lovers at all. They simply changed the way they shopped for their pieces of jewellery by visiting online jewellery sites 

Consumers refused to let the pandemic and the long months of lock down stop them from enjoying the immense pleasure they got from buying jewellery. It is their determination that has helped tremendously, to keep the jewellery industry going during these tough and uncertain times of the crippling Covid-19, worldwide pandemic. 

December 15, 2021 — CG Hart