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3 Things You Need to Know About Selling 14k Gold

(Above: shown above are Aiko hoops in various sizes in 14K Gold over Sterling Silver).

3 Things Retailers Need to Know When Selling 14k Gold Jewelry

3 Essentials About 14K Gold To Know

Let's dive into the 3 essential aspects of selling 14k gold jewelry, highlighting why 14k gold over sterling silver is a superior option compared to commonly sold brass-based costume jewelry.

Boma Jewelry 14K Gold

(Above: some of our best selling 14k Gold items including Dot Hoops and Deluxe Dot  Necklace).

1. Material Quality

First and foremost, retailers need to be aware of what exactly they are selling. While brass-based jewelry is widely available and often masquerades as higher quality due to its superficial gold-like appearance, it is essentially costume jewelry. Brass is significantly less durable and prone to tarnishing. In contrast, 14k gold layered over sterling silver offers not only a richer appearance but also greater durability. This composition is also classified as fine jewelry because it is made with both real precious metals (silver and gold). Read more about the definition of fine jewelry on Ebay to get an idea of how jewelry is evaluated from a value and materials perspective.

Simply speaking fine jewelry is made from the four precious metals: silver, gold, palladium, and platinum and is hallmarked. For silver, it is hallmarked 925 to represent its 92.5% silver composition as sterling silver. View the chart below to see the hallmarks used to identify these 4 precious metals:

Boma Jewelry | Guide to Precious Metals with Hallmarks
Boma Jewelry 925 Hallmark Sterling Silver

(Above: every piece of Boma Jewelry is made with 925 sterling silver and hallmarked 925).

Boma Jewelry Wholesale Blog 14K Gold with 925 Sterling Silver Hallmark

(Above: a detail view of a 14K Gold plated necklace by Boma Jewelry. The 925 sterling silver hallmark shows that the base metal is 925 sterling silver).


2. Longevity and Customer Satisfaction

One of the primary reasons to advocate for 14k gold over sterling silver is its lasting value. Customers are making an investment in pieces that hold up better over time, both in terms of material integrity and style. Retailers should emphasize the long-term benefits of purchasing fine jewelry that will not only endure but also maintain its beauty and function. This assurance of quality enhances customer trust and increases the likelihood of repeat business.

Boma Jewelry Wholesale Belle Hoops with Gold

To get a better idea of where longevity and customer satisfaction comes from, consider the following chart which shows what materials are used in the making of 14K gold that is plated over sterling silver vs 14K gold that is plated over a base metal. On the lefthand side you can see that the base metal used in Boma Jewelry is sterling silver, a precious metal base. While it's not visible because it is covered by gold plating, the material underneath the gold plating matters for many reasons.

Boma Jewelry Wholesale 14K Gold Boma vs Other brands

Sterling silver, being a precious metal, retains value over time, making jewelry pieces not only personal treasures but also potential investments. Brass, though economical, does not hold the same intrinsic value, which can affect the quality of the production and the long-term value of the jewelry.

3. Ethical and Sustainable Considerations

Guardian Article Fashion Waste Problem

The following Guardian article highlights the fashion industry's dirty little secret: "The available statistics suggest that between 80bn and 150bn garments are made every year and that between 10% and 40% of these are not sold. So it could be 8bn or 60bn excess garments a year – an alarming disparity."

The silver lining for the jewelry industry compared with the textile industry is in the ability to infinitely recycled our materials, namely precious metals with high value like silver, gold, platinum, and palladium. Boma Jewelry has been recycling within our supply chain for decades to ensure that we do not waste a single scrap of silver or gold in our manufacturing process.

After purchase or post-use, sterling silver jewelry is often resold, donated, or recycled, due to its material value. Alternatively, brass or base metals are difficult to recycle. Recycling base metal jewelry, such as those made from brass, poses several challenges that make it difficult to process after use. The intrinsic value of base metals like brass is significantly lower than that of precious metals. This lower value means that the economic incentive to recycle these materials is also diminished. The costs associated with collecting, sorting, and processing brass jewelry for recycling can outweigh the value of the recovered metals, discouraging recycling efforts.

Browse the below chart to see the value in dollars received for recycling different metals. This helps to illustrate the big difference in value of the materials used in costume jewelry vs fine jewelry. This chart also demonstrates the high material quality that you buy with Boma compared to buying jewelry that's made with inexpensive base metal materials that cost a lot less to work with compared with real silver and gold.

Boma Jewelry Wholesale Recycling 1 pound of jewelry comparison chart
Boma Jewelry Recycling Process

Educating Your Team and Customers Equipping your sales team with this knowledge ensures that they can convey these points effectively to customers. Training should include understanding the differences in metal quality, the benefits of fine jewelry over costume jewelry, and the ethical implications of their purchase. This level of transparency is not only good practice but can also set your store apart as a trustworthy and knowledgeable source. Learn more about Boma's sustainability and recycling programs on our retail sustainability page

Boma Jewelry 14K Gold

Retailers have the opportunity to lead the market by choosing to stock and sell 14k gold over sterling silver. By doing so, they meet consumer demand for quality, sustainability, and ethical products, enhancing their brand reputation and customer loyalty in the process. Remember, educating both your team and your customers about these benefits not only supports informed buying decisions but also contributes to a healthier, more sustainable jewelry industry overall.

Suzanne Vetillart is a second generation owner of family-owned Boma Jewelry. Boma Jewelry was founded in Seattle in 1981. Learn more about story here.

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