by Jamie Smedley, Marketing Content Development Group, Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®

A woman walks down the street; she is fashion savvy and ready to shop for jewelry. As she browses the windows of countless big and small jewelry shops, she is captivated by a small display in a corner-shop window of a small artisan jewelry store.

She stands entranced by what she sees. The brilliantly handmade jewelry appears to dance and perch on the stands waiting for her to reach in her hand to play with it. She can't tell why, but the overall effect is tantalizing and inviting, so she goes into the store to see more and continues to peruse and be delighted with the luscious jewelry in the displays for another hour until she makes a decision to purchase a couple of her favorite treasures she finds.

But her shopping experience doesn't end there. The counter clerk whisks her selections to a side table and carefully wraps her purchases in fine tissues and keepsake packaging that is boldly emblazoned with the store's name in a scrolling decorative font. With a great flourish, she is handed her elegantly beribboned packages, and she walks out of the store with a face beaming with pampered enjoyment in her decision to come into this store. What a great find--and now her new favorite store because she feels like a part of the family and she is sure that she is now one of their favorite and best customers.

When she returns home, she carefully inspects her packages, once again awed and glowing with the amount of care and thought that went into the wrapping. Looking at the store's name in the fancy scrolling font, she remembers her journey to that inviting window and her adventures of exploring every nook and cranny of the store's displays. Her experience is relived every time she looks at the package or wears the jewelry, and every time she wears it she is asked where she purchased it, and she shares her story of the greatest little jewelry shop ever. She returns often, and brings her friends with her who will in turn share this experience with their friends ... and the family continues to grow.

Jewelry Displays

This fictional story is a perfect example of the importance of branding through your displays and packaging. Having jewelry displays that are well suited and consistent throughout your store or booth is a great way to grab the attention and lure shoppers to explore what you have to sell. High quality displays are a true investment that enriches the shopping experience while adding to the perceived value of your jewelry. When shopping for displays, analyze the amount and type of space you have to work with. Situate the displays to get the viewer's eye on key items. Stands come in many colors and finishes, so you can choose colors and finishes that complement your jewelry. For instance, silver jewelry tends to disappear on a white satin background, but will look stunning on black velvet.

Keep your displays uncluttered to avoid crowding. A symmetrical arrangement is commonly used because the balance will allow the eye to flow through the arrangement. A display is an extension of your store, personality and brand, so you want to have a consistent look that coordinates with your packaging to create an unforgettable encounter.


Packaging is another key part of the shopping experience. It is just as important as the product you carry. A beautifully-made business card placed inside a fancy cotton-filled box is a good way of softly advertising to the customer. Including gently folded tissue paper and ribbons conveys the feeling that this is a "gift" for the customer. Some stores place lagniappe, an ''extra'' gift or keepsake, within the package to be discovered later by the opener.

For instance, one particular artist always includes a delicate dried leaf native to her area. Another business owner always uses a special sticker to seal the tissue paper. Used consistently, these small signature touches add perceived value and build loyalty and comfort with your brand. Your customer will come to expect and appreciate your consistent identity the more they shop with you.

Your packaging should be consistent with every piece of jewelry you sell, because customers will notice even the smallest change you make to your packaging practices. A good guide to how much you should spend on packaging is one and a half percent of the total cost of the product.

For a quick and affordable presentation idea, use Tite-lip™ storage bags that easily transition into professional-looking display selections. Tite-lip bags work wonders, since they're clearer and smaller than grocery store zip-style bags and you can simply attach them to fold-over display cards or adhesive hang tabs to create quality packaging. Always make sure to match up the sizes correctly for a perfect fit.

Displays and packaging should coordinate and match. For instance, if you have black leather display stands, choose a black paperboard or black vinyl box. Including colored tissue paper, gift-wrapping and quality shopping bags is all part of the impression you give your customers about your personal style and how you can create a strong, recognizable brand.

Fire Mountain Gems and Beads has a wide selection of coordinating jewelry displays, organizers and presentation boxes. Pick and choose your favorites to create your own signature style.

Customer Comments

We would like to share some of the customer comments we received, in response to the article "The Power of Branding" as featured in an email newsletter. Please keep in mind that the comments expressed below are those of our customers and do not reflect the views of Fire Mountain Gems and Beads.

''Great article (have saved it in my favorites so I may refer back to it)! I have been "taking a sabbatical" (for a few years) to sell property, move, build our "forever" house, etc.. Now I really miss not just my small jewelry business, but also designing and SELLING my designs! This article has spurred me to take the steps necessary in my new community to get back into the "SWING"!''
- Kathi

''Very helpful, just getting ready to setup in a storefront - great timing!!! I'll be putting all this to use very soon!''
- Courtney

''I liked and appreciated your article concerning packaging and wrapping. Thank you.''
- Elect

''Branding from EncycloBEADia:
Good Article. I know the sellers I go back to have done this very thing: tiny unique gifts and consistency.''
- elliQQ

''Great article about presentation; will be very helpful when I get my shop!''
- Jean

''This was an excellent article - very informative and encouraging, as I am just starting out with jewelry making and selling! Thank you!''
- Midge

''Wow that article was great! I had no idea about all that. Maybe if I try this at the next Bazaar, I will sell a bit more! Thanks for the tips!!!''
- Teresa

''I love your informative about a makers' mark? A stamp with my name (customized), do you carry any thing as that? Thank you.''
- Renee

''Just a note to say how much I enjoy all the wonderful things I have bought from you and I really enjoyed the article on packaging and displays.''
- Heidi

''Your article on branding your product was very informative. My little surprise for my customers when they open their box is a small polishing cloth in little plastic bag with my business name and telephone number. I have had many positive comments about this practice. It really pays off in the end because it has helped me develop a lot of loyal patrons.''
- Helen

''Feedback for the "branding" article. I think this is a very important topic and would have loved to see suggestions related to online sales. I don't do markets or have a shop front - I sell almost exclusively online and branding suggestions pertinent to items that have to be posted as economically as possible would be most welcome.''
- Debbie

''I totally agree about how you package a customer's purchase. I like to place mine in a small decorated cardboard gift bag (looks like a small purse) with tissue paper, materials list, my card and tied with a ribbon or jute. Customers are so surprised by this.''
- Colleen

''This is a GREAT article on "the power of branding". It will give me something to think about while I create some 'wares' today. Will browse your supply section right now to get some ideas. Thank you so very much. Marketing, as with so many of us, is not my forte or area of interest. It is just a necessary part of being the successful artisan I strive to be. I'm excited about the new look I'll have at the next fair or bazaar. Thanks again........and thank you for this new interest and enthusiasm I now have for marketing!''
- Marsha

''Your article, The Power of Branding, really hit home. As a fledgling "designer", I knew I should do "something" to make my work memorable to customers. But until I read this, I wasn't sure what that "something" was. I still have a lot of thinking to do, but now I know what I'm trying to come up with.

Thanks for all your articles. Each one speaks to me in a different way.''
- Paula

''Thanks so much for the article on 'Branding'. It is just what I needed to become the professional jeweler I want to become.

also teach workshops and classes to other wanna-be's and this will be such a great addition to my schedule.''
- Valerie

''The article gives practical advice on the do's and don'ts of displays. Just as one looks at a painting, a display should portray the overall effect to keep the buyer's eyes roving around, moving from one object to the other to take in the whole picture (display). Very well done.''
- Vera