The meaning of jewelry varies from person to person. A piece can denote a stage in a romantic relationship, social status, an appreciation of beauty and fine craftsmanship, a form of self-expression, a milestone, or a matter of “just because.” These reasons or more can spur people to spend on such exquisite ornaments that dazzle the world with their brilliance the way diamonds do.
Here’s the scenario: you are looking for an engagement ring. You know as much the style that will suit the wearer. However, you are confused about where to look around for the diamond engagement ring.
Weigh down the strengths and weaknesses of two known locations for diamond rings—online and physical stores—to find the answer.
Which requires little to no effort from you?
- Drive or walk to a jewelry shop near your place of work.
- The stands are well-lit and angled to highlight the beauty and add luster to the stones.
- You will survey the display and ask a sales rep to take out a piece to look closely at it.
- You also have to be wary of their sales agenda.
- Buying an engagement ring is not going to be a onetime thing, so that means more trips to one or more jewelers.
- Your initial search typically starts with a giant marketplace, which has its fair share of generic and niche pieces.
- If you can conjure a few brands, the better.
- However, expect your jaw to drop because of the wares and prices that these household names carry.
- Compare prices, take screenshots, and ask for details all in the comfort of your room.
- Ultimately, jewelry is a few clicks away and is delivered where you live.
What are you looking at?
- Some brick-and-mortar shops operate under a business model that doesn’t require them to carry much inventory to be successful.
- It can work in your favor because new designs are quick to appear in the display stands.
- However, it can also limit your choices to what is right in front of you unless you go the custom jewelry path.
- E-commerce sites have access to plug-ins that allow them to upload hundreds, if not thousands, of products. This partly explains why online jewelers have countless listings that can be filtered by price, design, etc.
- The rings can be on hand or the online shop a mere storefront.
- With a smaller capital required to start a business, bespoke jewelry makers abound online, including social media sites with designs you won’t find anywhere else.
To be fair, big box and chain jewelry stores have websites together with their physical locations. Some of these brands, however, use their sites to alert customers about their newest offerings and make appointments. They don’t accept orders online, so you have to visit in person.
How much will it cost you?
- A chunk of the jewelers’ revenues goes to overhead costs incurred in maintaining real-world locations. This factor, plus the value attached to their brand, moves their prices higher than those online.
- Extra services and special requests for personalization add up to the cost. Nevertheless, you may be lucky to get big discounts during the biggest sale days of the year.
- Jewelry e-commerce sites don’t have to deal with rent, security, staffing costs, and other expenses of running a physical store.
- They also don’t have to carry inventory and pay to transport, store, and stock products on their shelves.
- Online stores can offer engagement rings at lower prices or priced them competitively than physical shops.
- Online jewelry stores have promos and big-day sales with steep discounts.
Based on the above, buying an engagement ring online is the more sensible option. It doesn’t cost you gas or an Uber ride, the designs are limitless, and affordable prices can await you.
To balance things out, here are known limitations of online shopping. Be careful, and be aware of the following:
- Watch out for scams. Shop only in reputable stores. Check the website’s security, look for an office address with a number you can call, and read the reviews that are posted in the e-commerce site or elsewhere on the internet.
- Read the returns and refund policies. A legitimate shop will allow clear-cut policies on how to return and get refunds for your item.
- Ask for pictures. In lieu of touching and seeing the product, actual or sample pictures will help you set expectations about the ring.
How are things going with your window shopping? It’s the thought that counts, as well as the effort put into the search for a diamond engagement ring. The size of the stone will make any person blush and say yes to the all-important question.