‘Looking for high quality retail solutions to maintain brand opulence’
By Retail4Growth Team | April 29, 2021
This is part of a series of interactions that Retail4Growth had with jewellery retailers across the states of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra under the banner of Retail Yatra. In this interview, R4G speaks to Ashish Kothari, Owner, Kothari Jewellers in Jabalpur.
Can you share the background of your company & your brand - how and when you got established? How did you expand?
The Kothari group started as a garment business. In 2001, we opened the jewellery store. We went for renovation in 2014 with a 8000 sq. ft. store. Currently we have only one store in the city. However, we are planning to open one more store in the coming year.
How many stores/showrooms do you have outside your city?
There are just 4-5 big showrooms in Jabalpur and we are one of them. Local jewelers have a good reach in the city and generate most of the businesses here.
Post Covid, do you see any change in shoppers behavior or in jewellery retailing overall? Also, with national brands being omnipresent and the rise of ecommerce, what is your brand's USP in a highly competitive market segment?
We received great response as soon as we opened up. People are treating it as an assured investment. Elimination of unnecessary expenses during Covid led to increase in savings that made people invest in gold, instead of other luxuries. New-normal has been pretty smooth for us. In fact, it was good for jewellery retailers.
On the e-commerce platform, the factor of touch and feel is not present. Online is effective for light-weight jewellery, but people always prefer to buy heavy jewellery in-person. However, we are looking forward to foraying into the online business as well. Our main aim is to build good relations with customers, resolve their problems, and provide them with all the advantages of a physical store. Transparency is also a key factor for us in this aspect. We usually conduct lucky draws and similar activities to honor our customers and create consumer engagement. It’s a combination of marketing, transparency, variety, store look and a lot of other factors that keep us going.
How do you plan your store visibility? Do you select based on the location/ shopper profile/retailer?
People here are left with very little choice and have to travel a lot even to visit small stores. Our main aim was to create a space that houses variety, design, comfort and consumer engagement. We are planning to open small stores and increase our presence in suburban areas too.
What kind of planning goes into the display and merchandising? Do you have a vendor partner for executing your in-store displays? Who do you partner with?
The display undoubtedly matters the most. Proper presentation is very significant to persuade customers. Merchandising also matters a lot. We have a different kind of packaging and people are attracted towards it. We usually deal with small vendors from Delhi, Bengaluru and other cities. DT Exports from Delhi looks after our display activities.
How easy or difficult is it to find a good retail solution vendor (like fixture, lighting supplier) in your city? Any challenges? What are your expectations from them especially after Covid?
It’s not easy at all. We have to search for a particular solution provider from other cities. Even though our dealer friends help each other, it’s difficult to find the right solution. We are looking for supreme quality solutions that can maintain the opulence of our brand.
Can you share some observations on the jewelry market in your city? What is the key to succeeding in this market?
Transparency is the biggest thing in jewellery retail. Also, variety is needed to attract consumers, backed by comfort.
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