consumer guidance. we do not sell jewelry.

Jewelers 101

Online vs. Local

Should you consider buying your diamond from an online vendor? These are the pros and cons:


  • Low Pricing. Because of their low overhead, many online diamond dealers are able to give you near-breakeven pricing.
  • Low Pricing. Since online diamond vendors serve the whole world, their volumes are very high. This translates into better pricing for you.
  • Low Pricing. Likewise, since online diamond vendors do serve the whole world, they therefore compete against many, many other diamond vendors, and competition among them is fierce. This translates into better pricing for you.
  • Low Pricing. In many cases, you do not have to pay sales tax, which saves you an additional 6-8% on the price of the diamond.

Get the picture? You can save money if you buy from an online vendor. However, there are caveats.


  • Can't see what you're buying. The diamond jewelry you're buying will likely commemorate a very special event in your life. How do you know what you're buying if you can't see it with your own eyes? Many of the more reputable online jewelers offer return policies. Make sure you understand the return policy to make sure you have recourse if the jewelry does not meet your expectations.
  • What about the ring setting?. If you're purchasing a diamond ring, you will also need to select a setting. This can be easy if you are selecting a simple setting (such as a solitaire), but becomes more difficult if you want something more elaborate or if you're looking for a customized design.
  • Life-long Service. A diamond will last "forever", but only with the right cleaning and maintenance. If you choose to buy your diamond jewelry from an online vendor, you will still need a local jeweler for periodic maintenance and cleanings.
  • Questionable Reputations. Although they may have glitzy-looking websites, some of the less reputable online vendors operate out of their basements and/or shut down at any given moment. The way to protect yourself is to make sure you utilize your credit card to make your purchase, since most credit card companies offer fraud protection and will refund your money in case of problems (check the terms of your credit card). Even if you have to spend an additional 3% on the diamond, the extra protection and peace of mind are worthwhile, particularly if you're buying from an online vendor.