We are officially in autumn now and Del (my husband and the apprentice jeweler) and I have just come back from the Crossover Pawn Expo at Gaylord Palms in Orlando, FL. The experience was...eye-opening. We realized that our business model, which has worked for the family for the last 24 years, is no longer going to keep us around. The very last thing we want is to be in the same boat as ToysRus or Bennigans or any of the other big name brick-and-mortar companies who have been going under over the last decade.
In our store, we have noticed a decline in foot traffic for the purpose of purchasing...well....anything. The days of needing something and beating feet to track it down are over. The days of searching websites and two-day delivery are here. We realized during the Expo that just being a brick-and-mortar store is never going to be sustainable. At least not for sales.
That being said, our jewelry repairs are through the roof! In the month of August, we had over 1,000 items come through the store to be repaired...and that doesn't even count our watch batteries. The service industry is booming! We have taken something that used to be a side note of the business and have turned it into our main source of traffic. I'd like to take a second, here, and give a humongous/ginormous/out-of-this-world THANK YOU! to all of our customers that have entrusted us with the care of your jewelry over the months, over the years, and over the decades we have been open. Your trust and recommendations are what have gotten us this far and all of us here can never say, "thank you" enough.
From this point on, we have decided to come into the light and into the 21st century. We will be upgrading our computer system in the next few months so that we can more efficiently help our customers. Once we switch, we will be able to better connect with our customers regarding pawns, repairs, lay-aways, promotions, and even give out a few little benefits for our return folks. We hope to increase our online presence with more Blog-posts to keep you all updated, put some of our merchandise online so that you can shop from home and, in general, being much more available to our customers via the internet. Our goal is that over the next year, each customer who does business in our store will be entered into our software and begin earning point towards in store events, promotions, sales, and services. We hope to be able to offer everyone the same great service we have been but BETTER.
Keep in touch, folks. The winds are changing for better days to come.
Hi there, I am the Social Media Manager here at Community Pawn. I'm also the owners' daughter. I'll be posting on a regular basis to try to keep everyone up to date on some of the things going on in our store. Happy reading!