Millennial consumers are coming of age and the jewelry industry knows it. But there’s one area of digital marketing that’s still looking a bit rough when it comes to targeting these shiny new shoppers.
As the main demographic for first-time nuptials, millennials are researching via digital channels, like search, more than any other generation. Unbranded product research remains key to the jewelry industry, thanks to a fragmented market—particularly the bridal segment. But traditional bridal brands have been slow to target consumers early in research, relying on both brand equity and the high-touch in-store experience instead. This has allowed indie brands to step into the gap, promoting research content through search to inform shoppers and keep them on their brand properties according to Gartner L2’s report on the topic. Indeed, research is key for shoppers who may not understand what to look for with diamonds or engagement ring choices. As such, it is here that brand equity loses value, as smaller disruptors can step in and more effectively target first-time bridal jewelry shoppers.
Meanwhile, indie brands like Blue Nile, Brilliant Earth and James Allen all invest heavily to ensure visibility for educational content by purchasing text ads against keywords like “diamond 4cs” or “diamond clarity guide.” In fact, Blue Nile appears on over 70% of bridal education keywords. With Blue Nile, these education pages are in the top five most visited site pages, right after the homepage and main category pages—reflecting the importance of this kind of content with consumers. The brand also focuses on more than just search to promote its educational content. Blue Nile’s largest display ad campaign also focused on education, with 57% of all ad impressions directing shoppers back to education pages on how to pick a diamond ring, rather than directly to product pages.
That said, Google search remains the top digital channel to drive traffic to sites, accounting for 63% of all tracked brand site traffic. In fact, consumers use this channel more than any other to conduct pre-purchase research. Ticker and tinsel brands alike can learn from disruptors like Blue Nile that integrating education throughout the purchase journey and optimizing content for search are key to capturing consumers of the Google generation.