Professional Jeweler Archive: Creating a Moment of Cyber-Delight

September 2000

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Creating a Moment of Cyber-Delight

If you think you’ve got angst about the image projected by your store’s jewelry boxes and bags, consider the plight of online jewelers

They’ve got customers they’ve never met and stores whose only reality is millions of pixels dancing on a computer screen. Other than the jewelry itself – which, of course, is not always unique – packaging represents the only tangible opportunity to reassure customers their buying decisions were correct.

Get it wrong and, well, there’s a lot of competition out there. Get it right and maybe you have something like the red fabric bag in which Ashford.com sends out most of its merchandise. In some circles, the bags have such cachet they’re being sold on eBay.

“We hear that people use them to carry their golf balls,” says Mary Lou Kelley, vice president of marketing. Other reports have the bags edging out Starbucks Coffee bags as a high-status way to carry lunch to work.

Ashford’s bags are part of a coordinated packaging program that also includes jewelry and gift boxes in the same shade of red. The company doesn’t do much low-end business, said Kelley, so everything is of equal quality.

Most purchases are packed in a jewelry box stamped inside and out with the Ashford name in silver. This goes into the red bag, which ties with a black ribbon and, finally, into an outer box for shipping.

“When people receive our packages, it’s important that we exceed any expectations they have,” said Kelley. “We want that to be a moment of delight.”

– by Mark E. Dixon

Copyright © 2001 by Bond Communications