Selling Jewelry Online

There are many wonderful crafters and artists who submit to Crafty Tips. The busiest category (and the one with the most listings) showcases the works of Jewelry Makers from all over the world. As you can imagine, I’ve seen a variety of photography styles and techniques. Some do a wonderful job of showing each piece to its full beauty, some are almost there and sometimes the photo is lovely but still fails to explain the piece.

One of the problems is that many pieces are hard to imagine in action. In action? Yep. Think about the action of jewelry – earrings and pendents hang and dangle and necklaces and bracelets drape. Pins are often designed with a specific top and bottom. While some jewelry is designed to wear a variety of ways; many jewelry artisans fail to make it clear how they envisioned or designed the item to be worn.

When selling jewelry online, you can never forget that your customers can not touch the piece and most will not take the time to email you to ask, “So, how do you wear this piece anyway?”

Off all the pieces of jewelry I look at when reviewing jewelry websites, artisans often make mistakes when selling pendents…When it comes to selling pendants, there are two main issues – should pictures be taken with the pendant on a necklace and should the pendant be sold alone or with the necklace.

Let’s start with the decision to sell the pendant alone or with the necklace. The biggest problem with selling necklaces (the chain, ribbon, rat tail cording or whatever other medium the pendant will hang from) is that jewelry makers and designers will have to keep all those materials on hand in their inventory. That can quickly increase your expenses and will therefore also increase the price of each pendant.

I saw one jewelry artist who was selling their pendants online with a full selection of necklace options. Each option was like ordering from a menu. A 24 inch gold chain cost more than an 18 inch one which cost more than the silver chain options which in turn cost more than the cording options etc. Customers could purchase the pendant alone or with one of the necklace options. There were pictures of the pendants on one of the precious metal chains as well as on the ribbon or other cording. Customers could see exactly how the pendant would hang and how the pendant attached to the necklace.

How a pendant attaches to a necklace is the second issue with selling pendants online. As a buyer, I like seeing a picture of the pendant alone but I also want to see it hanging on something.

This is particularly true with wire wrapped pieces. I have seen some truly gorgeous work, both online and off, where the designer considered the way the piece would hang and incorporated the bail, ring or clasp into the design. But, I’ve seen other designers who make lovely pendants which fail to provide a nice way for it to be hung from a necklace. One designer had lovely loopy wraps around the stone and simply hung the pendant through one of those loops. The piece did not lay flat when worn and looked like a piece where the hanger had broken off and the owner simply was making do until the piece could be repaired.

When selling jewelry online, pendants in particular, you should take enough pictures and use enough words to make it clear how the pendant will be displayed when worn. Show how it will be “strung”. Simply make it clear in your description whether the necklace is included, not included or how much extra it will cost. Don’t assume your potential customer will spot the bail within your design or assume that you did not improperly make the piece where it will not hang flat.

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