The Cons of buying Diamonds online

Buying diamonds online may seem logical however if you want to buy Diamonds in Dallas or Engagement rings in dallas, consider this.The internet is, well, the internet. It’s a vast unregulated marketplace with good and bad merchants selling good and bad diamonds. If you don’t understand how to tell the difference—or if you don’t consult an expert who does—you can make a terrible (and expensive) decision.

Most online stores simply list the inventory that their wholesalers are holding. These are posted to their site in a giant electronic download. The store does not edit or quality control the stones—they usually don’t ever see them or take possession of them. So what sort of diamonds are in the wholesale inventory? Tons, both good and bad. It’s also possible you might see the same diamond listed on competing sites.

What about customer testimonials or online ratings? With other purchases it’s easy to use customer testimonials as a barometer of quality. On Amazon.com, for instance, if 500 users give a product an average rating of 4.7 stars, chances are it’s a good bet. Diamonds are a different story. Each one is unique. The product itself can’t be rated by customers, only the merchant.

So you can look for a highly rated merchant. But let’s face it—do you even trust the people rating the store? When it comes to diamonds, most people don’t know what they’re looking at…and wouldn’t know if they got a good value. More importantly, a diamond’s internal characteristics, which the naked eye can’t see, drive a tremendous amount of the stone’s intrinsic value and durability. So a legion of satisfied customer testimonials might help qualify the diamond seller as a reputable merchant (i.e. they ship on time, they accept refunds), but it’s no guarantee that your individual diamond is the best one that you could have bought for the dollar.

Another disadvantage of online merchants: Not seeing the stone. A diamond on its own always looks great. Diamonds need to be compared and contrasted for the average person to form an opinion about whether one is more pleasing to the eye than another. Online stores don’t let you compare and contrast diamonds to understand the tradeoffs or to assess the beauty of the diamond (yes there is “art” as well as “science” at play). This is especially true for diamonds that are fancy shapes. With pear shapes, for example, you need to see if you like a long thin pear, short fat pear, etc. And many fancy shape diamonds exhibit a”bow tie reflection” that only your eye can decide if it’s offensive or not.

A few final disadvantages of buying a diamond online: you’re at the mercy of the information they provide you. They toss around terms like “ideal diamonds” even though they might not be ideal. They could give you a grading report that’s not one you should trust. And, generally, they don’t offer a longer-term relationship for extremely important “after sale” services: things like sizing, cleaning, tightening, and upgrading.