diamond buying guide

Buy Jewelry Online

Want to buy jewelry online, but unsure about security, quality, and more? Read our tips and hints as to what to look for before, during, and after your online jewelry purchases.

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Buying Jewelry Online

What if she doesn't like it? What if you hate it? What if the shipment is lost?

We know. Many people have concerns about buying something as important as a diamond engagement ring (or any other diamond or expensive jewelry) online. You've taken the time to educate yourself about buying diamonds, now take the time to educate yourself about buying online — because you'll generally find better prices and better selections at online Diamond Jewelry Stores.

Read the information below, use our checklists, and use our comparison chart of some of the top online Diamond Jewelry Stores to ensure that you not only select the right piece of jewelry, but also the right store.

Advantages of Buying Jewelry Online

When you're ready to make your next jewelry purchase, consider buying it online. The Internet offers a number of unique shopping advantages, whether you're a first-time purchaser or an e-shopping veteran:

Speed. Make your selection. Enter your information. Then click a button. It's as easy as that. And all from your own computer.

Convenience. Compare the online jewelry shopping experience with shopping at a mall jewelry store or department store: you rush to get there, fight traffic, vie for parking, get jostled by crowds, endure pushy salespeople, suffer long lines at the register…By the time you get home with your purchase, you're drained. And if you need to return the item, you can look forward to going through this hassle all over again.

Selection. Online Diamond Jewelry Stores have the capacity to offer a much wider selection of merchandise for sale in one place than either a traditional store or catalog. This means you can uncover some truly unique jewelry items you won't find anywhere else.

Value. Because an Internet retailer has lower inventory and other overhead costs than a bricks-and-mortar retailer, these savings can be passed on to you, the consumer, in the form of great deals on the latest merchandise.

Education. The Internet is the world's largest storehouse of information. In the market for an engagement ring and want to learn about the 4Cs of diamonds? You'll find it here. Questions about how to clean your jewelry? It's all here. Want to learn how to judge quality, or discover the latest styles? You can do it all from your computer.

Even if you decide not to buy your jewelry online and opt for a traditional jewelry store or jewelry department, the Internet can still be a valuable resource. You can essentially do all your legwork - determine the style, quality and price you are willing to pay - before you even enter the store. So take advantage of it!

What to Look for When Selecting an Online Store

Customer Service
You may take advantage of shopping online in order to avoid salespeople, but what if you want to ask a question or you change your mind about the stone color? Does the online store where you shop have a telephone number where you can speak to Customer Service? If so, what hours are they available — be sure to verify timezones.

Return Policy
Read the site's Return Policy and read it carefully. Some sites claim a 30-day return policy, but if you read carefully, returns of many items require a "re-stocking" fee. Know what the policy is before you buy.

Generally, any item that has been engraved or in any other way "personalized" will not qualify for the store's Return Policy.

We strongly recommend only shopping at sites with a minimum 30-Day Return Policy.

And if a store doesn't have it's Return Policy posted somewhere on the site, click on to the next web site and never look back.

Manner of Shipment
It might not be critical for small pieces of costume jewelry, but if you buy a $4,000.00 engagement ring online, you want to know that the store where you made your purchase ships using insured carriers (e.g., FedEx, UPS) and that all shipments are insured for the full value of their contents.

Lost/Damaged Shipments Policy
What is the store policy for items lost or damaged in shipment? If the store uses insured carriers and insures its shipments, they should be more than willing to replace or refund any item lost or damaged in shipment.

Diamond Certificates
Diamond certificates come from a variety of labs. We recommend buying from sites that provide either AGS or GIA (two of the world's top labs) certificates. Some online stores offer their own certificates or certificates from other labs.

And while we recommend AGS/GIA certification, we recognize that not all purchases require certification (most preset diamonds do not come with AGS or GIA certification) and some lovely diamonds can be bought without certification. Remember, certification doesn't change the quality of the diamond (although and AGS or GIA certificate can add to the value), it certifies the specifications of the diamond.

Secure Transactions
Today, most web sites, guarantee that all personal information you provide for payment or registration purposes is automatically encrypted by the latest security software. This eliminates the risk of data interception, manipulation or recipient impersonation by unauthorized parties.

Privacy Policy
Most web sites today that collect any personal data (even "just" an email address) have their "privacy policy" posted. Review the privacy policy to confirm that your private information will not be sold to other companies, specifically "marketing" companies or "partners with similar products."

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