While not one of the largest merchants serving the bitcoin space, Reeds Jewelers is unique in that it is one of the only major merchants that has taken a multichannel approach to its bitcoin payments program.
Speaking to CoinDesk, director of marketing and business development Mitch Cahn indicated that the North Carolina company has so far seen bitcoin users spending enthusiastically, and that average orders completed via both channels have been impressive.
Cahn told CoinDesk:
“The transaction amount is significantly higher than our average order value, and I think that’s a direct correlation to the fact that a lot of bitcoin owners that are shopping are holding on to a lot of bitcoin.”
Cahn declined to provide figures or sales data for either its in-store or online sales supporting this assertion, citing Reeds policy. He went on to suggest, however, that he was pleased with this success metric, especially given the volume of orders Reeds receives from bitcoin customers.
The remark is also notable given Reeds’ product selection, which includes many items priced above the $1,000 mark.
Mobile POS push
While Reeds has been in business for nearly 70 years, Cahn framed the company as friendly to innovation. For example, he noted that the company’s existing point-of-sales technology influenced its ability to accept bitcoin.
Far from a complicated process, Cahn reports that integrating bitcoin in his company’s stores was painless. His remarks paint a different portrait from bitcoin’s usual point-of-sale problems, where users report struggling with QR codes and confirmation times.
“We have a lot of mobile POS solutions in our stores. So, whereas in other stores there might be one fixed point of sale, we then have three to four mobile versions around the store with iPads and sleds.”
Cahn said that, because this existing technology was in place, adding bitcoin just meant adding another app to its existing software and training its employees to use this new part of the service.
Entering the conversation
Cahn also spoke to CoinDesk about his recent trip to the Cryptolina Bitcoin Expo, held in downtown Raleigh from 15th–16th August. There, Cahn, as well as Reeds Jewelers digital strategist Bradley Zimmer, addressed the conference crowd, sharing the company’s story.
Cahn noted that he had a positive experience with the community, and that he was interested to hear the experiences of other merchants who had been accepting bitcoin.
Further, he suggested that he left the conference with the impression that the future is bright for bitcoin users, and that the number of merchants serving the ecosystem is likely to expand.
“I don’t know how quick it’s going to happen, but you’ve got to start somewhere,” he added.
No future bitcoin plans
Throughout the interview, Cahn talked confidently about both bitcoin and the wider digital currency community. However, at present, he said Reeds has no plans to build on its existing bitcoin payments program.
Cahn said Reeds isn’t ruling out one day accepting altcoins, but notes that his company doesn’t want to make any promises about adding such services at this time. Rather, he framed bitcoin as just one of the ways Reeds is able to serve new customer segments that grow its business, comparable to its jewelry-repair or diamond-buying options.
Still, Cahn said he would encourage other merchants to consider bitcoin as a payment option, concluding:
“If I was speaking to other people in the marketing world or the retail world, I would say it was a good thing.”
Images via Reeds Jewelers