Ralf Kircher

Ralf Kircher

Ralf Kircher is Group Executive Editor for SmartWork Media, overseeing INSTORE and INDESIGN magazines. He thinks the perfect jewelry-store experience is one that doesn't make him feel like the bumbling romantic his wife knows him to be.

Website URL: http://instoremag.com/
Write on Tuesday, 08 April 2014 Published in Customer Service

A couple of things you missed if you didn’t make it to Shane Decker’s keynote talk prior to today’s SMART Jewelry Show opening. If you like these, just think how much he said in an hour that I wasn’t able to write down! (That’s a hint to not miss next year’s SMART Show ...)

Anyway, have a read. Bet you’ll find this interesting:

Write on Sunday, 06 April 2014 Published in Customer Service

Bob Phibbs, aka “The Retail Doctor,” wants you to put a pig in your window display. You’re certain to have people come in and ask why it’s there, and that’s the point: to engage people in conversation, slow them down, catch their fancy, pique their sense of wonder and create browsers out of them.

“Good merchandising changes a mission customer into a browser,” Phibbs noted in his keynote address prior to the opening of The SMART Jewelry Show on Saturday. Phibbs suggested thinking of your store as an amusement park and your products as the souvenirs customers take home to remember their experience.

To that end, he offered advice for display and signage to create a more memorable in-store experience. Here are a few actionable takeaways:

  • The more expensive the item, the more space it should have around it. In that space, you might even include in the showcase a miniature red carpet with figures of movie stars walking toward the piece on a stand.
  • Good display helps customers feel smart.
  • Good display should say: Here’s the full picture of what you want.
  • Do as Nordstrom did with success and create a display of items popular on your store’s Pinterest board.
  • Take a cue from a florist’s sign that says “How mad is she?” and then shows three progressively larger and more expensive flower arrangements.
  • Steal the idea of a window display that includes a solitary ring next to a smartphone that displays a text-message chat between a man and the woman he’s on his way to propose to.
  • Signage should tell the customers what a product is going to do for them, not the facts and features.




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Write on Saturday, 05 April 2014 Published in Customer Service

In one of six sessions that kicked off the education day preceding The SMART Jewelry Show, display expert and INSTORE columnist Larry Johnson shared the top 10 mistakes made in displaying merchandise and offered solutions for each.

Most fixes cost nothing and can lead to immediate sales increases — Johnson cited a recent client who experienced a 234 percent year-on-year increase around Valentine’s Day after making display changes.

So, without further ado, here are his 10 mistakes. Pray you, avoid them!

Write on Thursday, 27 March 2014 Published in Customer Service

If there’s one thing retailers shouldn’t miss at The SMART Show, during a break from the show floor, it’s a visit to our photo studio.

A quick note from my sponsor: The SMART Jewelry Show is April 5-7 in Chicago, and the education day is April 4. Online pre-regrestration ends March 28. Go to smartjewelryshow.com/register now!

Write on Thursday, 20 March 2014 Published in Customer Service

If the digital age has been causing you to doubt the power of business cards, a couple of news stories I came across this week will restore your faith.