Local Web site developer Bizzuka Inc. is part of a joint partnership with National Jeweler, the leading trade magazine covering the jewelry industry, and Stuller Inc., one of the world's leading jewelry manufacturers, to produce e-commerce Web sites for independent jewelry retailers. The program, branded as National Jeweler Network - CustomerConnect, allows independent jewelers to create a competitive advantage against larger online retailers.
"The only double digit growth in the jewelry industry over the past few years has been online, a space independent jewelers have yet to occupy with any degree of success,” says Bizzuka CEO John Munsell. "The goal of this partnership is to change that dynamic and give small independents a fighting chance against sites like Blue Nile, Zales and Amazon. It's truly a David vs. Goliath story. This partnership gives the little guys affordable access to capabilities that for the first time make them competitive with the giants in their industry."
An independent retailer selling Stuller's jewelry would be able to add thousands of Stuller products to its site with the click of the mouse, including professional photography, descriptions, pricing using the jeweler's custom markups and more. Not only can jewelers mine Stuller's exhaustive inventory, but they can also add their own inventory as well. In a later version of the software, inventory from other jewelry manufacturers will also be included.
“This initiative is a continuation of Stuller’s 38-year history of providing business tools to retailers,” says Harold Dupuy, executive vice president of merchandising and marketing for Stuller. “Customized Web sites are a logical addition to our extensive marketing services programs, which help smaller retailers compete in increasingly difficult markets.”
Additionally, National Jeweler will make available to the jewelers' sites its content – a library of more than 200 search engine optimized articles directed toward the end-user that cover the gamut from educational and technical topics to fashion and season advice. Jewelers are given editorial ownership over the content to alter or localize it as they see fit.
"As a leading content provider to the jewelry market, the National Jeweler Network's responsibility is to keep all players informed about marketing best practices within the industry," says National Jeweler Network's group publisher, Chris Casey. "An online presence offers brand credibility, infinite reach, and increased competitive advantage. With proper search engine marketing implementation, the jewelers' Web site, not the brick and mortar store, will become the consumer's first touch point. The National Jeweler Network's philosophy is to facilitate this goal."
Bizzuka's Web content management system provides jewelers with simple point-and-click control over all the components of the site, enabling them to make updates and editorial changes in seconds – not days or weeks. Jewelers can either choose from a large assortment of template designs or a completely custom solution.