The jewelry business is competitive and it is a challenge to succeed.
“Now that everyone has cell phones and internet, the days of uneducated jewelry consumers are gone,” said David Nelson.
He believes his new store, Nelson Estate Jewelers, in Dobson Ranch in Mesa, stands out because of its ethical stance and commitment to fairness.
“We value ethics and transparency in business above all else,” Nelson said. “We have a huge advantage as we have incredible connections, lengthy experience and extensive knowledge. Our operating costs are extremely low and our margins are smaller than anyone we know in the jewelry business.”
Before settling in Mesa, Nelson and his wife and business partner, Aubrey, researched Tempe, Scottsdale, Gilbert, Chandler and Queen Creek. They chose the location at 2051 S. Dobson Road, just south of Baseline Road, because it is close to freeways.
“The renaissance in the area is incredible. If the economy stays healthy for another three to five years, I think Dobson Ranch has the ability to become the new ‘Arcadia of the East Valley,’” he said.
When he was 15, Nelson was a cashier at a Zales jewelry store in Wisconsin.
After high school, Nelson attended Arizona State University, unbeknownst to him that working for Zales in Arizona would be the start of his career and his greatest passion.
Nelson later worked for many big-name Valley jewelry stores, including Ganem Jewelers in Tempe and E.D. Marshall Jewelers in Scottsdale. These jobs gave Nelson valuable experience and connections around the world.
In 2015, the Nelsons bought a home in Dobson Ranch. The area had been under renovation since the recession, and Nelson was impressed with its potential.
With the area making a comeback and property values rising, a high-end business like a jewelry store would be a perfect addition, the Nelsons believed.
With this in mind, they started their business.
The lease for their store was signed in January, and it opened in April. Nelson Estate Jewelers soon became a full-service jewelry store that buys, sells and repairs.
“We are already being warmly received by the community and are holding our own. We are helping a lot of people and that is the first step to success. ‘If we are able to help enough people, we will be successful in our own way,’” he said.
While the industry plays price games with high margins and constantly running sales, Nelson said, he will offer the same quality pieces at prices that will consistently beat any other jeweler’s best sale or internet price.
“We do not judge any book by its cover. If you are coming in to get a chain repaired or to buy a $500,000 ring you will be treated exactly the same, with respect and fairness,” he said.
The couple strives to form strong bonds and lasting relationships with customers to keep them coming back.
“We care more about making people happy than making a buck. We are not pretentious. People are people, and we want to help every one of them to our best abilities,” said Nelson.
Moving forward, the Nelsons hope to expand their store, employ more people and make an impact on the community.
They already are trying to help the community.
“We make donations to United Food Bank based on watch-battery sales and whenever extra (money) is available. We hope to make sizable donations in the future,” said Nelson.
United Food Bank holds a special place in Nelson’s heart, as he was supported by government-assisted food programs as a child and believes that agencies like the food bank give kids a better chance in life.
The Nelsons also help local artists by displaying and selling their work.
“We feel that a jewelry-store setting is a great place to display art. We want to help our local artist community by continuing to offer that space for them to display, as well as bring potential customers into our store to see their hard work on display,” Nelson said.
Nelson believes that consistency with his core values will make his business stand out in a competitive marketplace.
“We understand that sometimes people get taken advantage of when selling pieces. We will always be as fair as possible when buying these pieces. Every client buying, selling or getting a repair is important to us. We want to cultivate long-lasting relationships with everyone who walks through our doors. We plan on doing this by offering the best product at the best price. Period.”
Visit nelsonestatejewelers.com or call 480-459-9867 for more information.