It is big box retailers and chain stores reaping the rewards of a billion dollar wedding registry market. According to The Knot Market Intelligence 2010 Bridal Registry Study, 1.5 million or 88 percent of engaged couples in the United States registered for gifts last year, primarily with big box retailers. And as it is still the height of wedding season (July, August, September and October), a large number of guests are currently purchasing the high price tag items chosen by engaged couples feeding to these stores’ profits. In fact, the average family member spends $146 on a wedding gift, while friends of the couple typically spend $79. And while there is an obvious big store bias when it comes to gift registries, independent retailers have caught a piece of the wedding day sales with the help of the groom.
Independent Brick and Mortars Have the Bling: Making Sales with Rings
The thought of buying an engagement ring online seems impersonal and like a purchase with little thought. Most grooms feel the ring is something that needs customization to fit the unique bride-to-be, and for that very reason they seek out independent, brick and mortar jewelers to give them that one-on-one attention and one of a kind offer that will fit the future Mrs. A 2011 survey from TheKnot.com and WeddingChannel.com confirms this, reporting that fewer than one out of 10 grooms, or about 9 percent purchased engagement rings from an online retailer in the past year, while 39 percent of buyers obtained at least components of the ring from a local or independent jeweler.
Sadly the sluggish economy has caused a decrease in spending on engagement rings and wedding jewelry. In fact, 14 percent of grooms have fallen victim to the economic climate, causing some to be limited in their choice of customization and design. But for those financially unharmed and saving up for the occasion, the purchase of a luxury ring and customization came hand-in-hand, with 59 percent of grooms, who purchased engagement rings costing more than $8,000, making a point to incorporate custom design elements.
To read more about the TheKnot.com 2011 survey findings, click HERE.