Jewellery or Jewelry? 20th April 2018 – Posted in: News – Tags: , , , , , ,

There’s a fundamental problem at the heart of trying to market an online jewellery store (which we are, for those of you who’ve missed it!) and it has nothing to do with jewellery at all; rather, it all boils down to language. Yes, the biggest issue that we face every day is the fact that no one knows how to spell jewellery!

How Many Ways Can You Spell It?


This may sound like a really stupid question and the honest answer is the same as it would be for every other word; there are probably a million different ways of spelling it and one thing I have discovered about the internet is that people can and will spell things any way they like and get away with it too.


The two that matter the most to us though, and those that we use, are the English way – Jewellery – or the American way – Jewelry.


How Do We Spell It?


Being an English website, with an online jewellery store based in the UK, we have always spelt our name and business in the English way, so we’re Guy Wakeling Jewellery and we sell jewellery (just to clarify!).


This is the way it is spelt on our website, on our shop front, on all of our stationary etc. and it’s the way we’ve spelt it for over 25 years, so to change it now would not only be a faff but would also cost us a small fortune.

matching engagement and wedding ring, saphire, bespoke, made by Guy Wakeling Jewellery

Why Does It Matter?


It matters because of the advancement of this brave new digital world of ours; Guy Wakeling Jewellery is an online jewellery store and therefore we sell our products (theoretically) in many different countries. Although there are many, many benefits to this new global economy and worldwide market place that we operate in, there is also one big disadvantage that effects countries with a common language: spelling!


The clever computers that run the internet often struggle to differentiate between different spellings of the same word, sometimes seeing them as different words altogether; hence, some computer algorithms will not recognise that our site sells jewellery and that’s a fairly big thing not to pick up on!


Search Engines and Social Media


Particularly on certain sites that operate both in the UK and in America and on social media sites – the biggest ones being Twitter, Facebook and Google+ etc. – there are very separate communities for jewellery and jewelry. Clearly there is a massive amount of cross-over, and admittedly the algorithms are getting better at recognising that they may be the same thing, but there are still many occasions on which a post about jewellery may not be visible to people interested in jewelry.


What’s more, again despite the fact that search engines have made huge steps forward in their interpretation of language recently, customers who search for online jewelry stores may not be shown our own online jewellery store, as it may not be seen as a match to their search criteria.


(I will also just add here that this is not only confined to the word jewellery, but we also encounter the same problem when marketing ladies’ jewellery as opposed to women’s jewellery or wedding rings as opposed to wedding bands; there is a lot of variation in the way that jewellery is labelled, but that is another blog post!)

Matching wedding and engagement ring from Guy Wakeling Jewellery

What Can We Do About It?


Until the algorithms adapt and become even more sophisticated at recognising different spellings (which they apparently are doing, quite quickly), the only way that we can combat this problem is to tackle it head on: essentially, we must make sure that the majority of our content marketing contains both the words jewellery and jewelry to avoid any confusion.


Blog posts such as this one are a (slightly) clever way of combating this issue but, unfortunately, it is much harder to work both words into your average social media posts without looking like you’re either useless at spelling or just very repetitive. Twitter is not too bad, because you can end posts with #jewellery and #jewelry (Twitter prefers the latter, by the way, and always suggests that as the correct hashtag to use) but trying to subtly insert all the different variations into Facebook or Google+ posts is a little bit harder.


For now though needs must, so please forgive us if our blogs and social media posts look like we have no idea how to spell and let’s hope those pesky algorithms hurry up and evolve!