EXCLUSIVE: Pandora declares 2017 as the ‘Year of the Consumer’

Pandora Skegness

Danish jewellery giant Pandora has declared 2017 the ‘Year of the Consumer’.

The switch in focus follows the success of the brand’s promotion of its rings in 2015, and earrings in 2016. As products now perform well across the board, with charms and bracelets still accounting for a vast majority of sales, the brand’s attention has turned onto the end consumer.

With a new managing director at the helm of the UK business, Pandora is looking to improve its customer experience and introduce shoppers to all the brand has to offer.

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Talking exclusively to Professional Jeweller, managing director Brien Winther said: “We have tried to expand our jewellery offering beyond charms and bracelets. Perhaps four or five years ago we were heavily charms and bracelets, then we moved into rings and that is a solid percentage of our business, then necklaces and earrings last year, so I think as we expand our jewellery offering that’s great because it attracts more customers, but for me, my focus will be about the consumer. How do we give the consumer a great experience and show them all of our jewellery?”

“If you come in to buy rings, how do we show you our bracelets? It’s a different consumer, especially a person who buys rings is typically a younger consumer, but we’ve got to make sure we show them all of our product and not become singularly focused on a category.”

As a start, Winther will be making sure store managers are looked after by the business and feel empowered to make decisions within their stores.

He explained: “If the consumer has a problem, we need to solve that problem in the store, using their [the store manager’s] best judgment. Our role is to support that judgement and not set up guidelines and policies and procedures which inhibit someone making a rational decision.”

Winther will also be meeting the brand’s retail partners in the UK one on one and in store to get to know the team and understand their businesses. He told Professional Jeweller that Pandora does not have a very strong opening program this year as the brand is “taking a breath” to focus on its existing network.

In terms of Pandora-owned stores, Winther says the challenge in the UK is to make sure this side of the business is world class.

“When you run a franchise system you have to have owned stores because you have to learn lessons and you have to trial things and test things and I think one of our challenges in the UK is to make sure that the owned business is world class,” Winther explained. “We need to be able to show franchise partners that we can run a world class retail business.”

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