The risk and reality of buying diamonds online

As with all forms of commerce, the jewellery trade finds itself in an era where brick-and-mortar stores are struggling to compete with their online counterparts. Online trade makes a lot of business sense, consumers have the world’s options in the palm of their hands, and the convenience of making their decisions from home.

What online shopping doesn’t offer, however, is real interaction with your purchase and the peace of mind from dealing with a person.

The real deal

When it comes to buying expensive items, like diamond jewellery, we all want the confidence that we are getting the product we pay for. It’s easy enough to research diamonds prior to a serious purchase (like an engagement ring), but the truth is, most consumers are left in the dark about value contributing factors. Yes, the four C’s determine price, but so do aspects like certification, cut quality, the nature of inclusions, treatments, fluorescence, global demand and branding.

When comparing quotes be mindful of diamond prices that are surprisingly low. The reason could be a prominent inclusion regardless of a favourable clarity grade, for example, or poor brilliance due to an inferior cut. These are things you can’t determine without viewing and, most importantly, comparing stones in person. Consider viewing a diamond as important as test-driving a new car. Would you base your purchase decision on the opinion of someone you’ve never met?

The value of a relationship

Of course, if you know your jeweller and trust their judgement based on previous purchases, why not order based on their recommendation? The confidence you get from person to person connections is an irreplaceable aspect of positive business dealings. By the time you make your second purchase, you know what type of quality and pricing to expect. The jeweller, in turn for keeping quality high and costings competitive, gets your repeat business.

Modernising the client-jeweller relationship

So yes, there is a space for purchasing jewellery online. We have all the communication possibilities in the world at our finger tips – even the option of real-time design consultation via Skype. Following your favourite jeweller on social media is a great way to keep up to date with new products, and if you see something you like it can be delivered to your door in a heartbeat.

Just be mindful of dealing with a real person at the other side of cyberspace, even if this means initially getting off the couch to build that relationship. Your jewellery collection is worth the effort.

At Mark Solomon Jewellers we offer South Africa’s largest selection of diamonds and diamond engagement rings under one roof, as well as master goldsmiths and the expertise of a dedicated design department. Visit our showroom in Sea Point, Cape Town, or contact us today for an obligation free consultation.