When It Looks Too Good To Be True
Internet Diamonds Are A Risky Business
In this increasingly mobile age, today’s information technology places the Internet and all of the vast opportunities it represents at our fingertips on a daily basis. Getting connected is easier than it’s ever been. As we’ve become more and more comfortable with the technology, we’ve seen it creeping into every aspect of our lives. Remarkably, every segment of the population—from the “Baby Boomers” to the so-called “Always On” generation (named because they are literally always connected)—has embraced the ‘Net and relies upon it assiduously.
One of the most rapidly emerging aspects of this digital reliance is in the area of online shopping. These days, it really is possible to touch a few buttons, input a credit card number and buy virtually anything we want from virtually anywhere in the world. With Internet shopping, we visit a few sites, decide what we like, transfer it to a shopping cart and make the buy. Then, a day or two later, we get to tear open our package like Christmas morning.
Now I’ll be the first to admit I do love the convenience of online shopping for certain product categories. But, when it comes to buying Jewelry—well, that’s a different situation altogether. A diamond purchase is simply not one you should make sight unseen. Even professionals in the industry like AB&L Jewelers, when doing business with trusted associates and colleagues do not purchase anything they haven’t held in their hands and seen with their own eyes.
You’d think it’d be different. After all, there are a very limited number of diamond cutting centers in the world. With travel expenses being what they are, one would think the jewelry industry would have readily embraced the opportunity to save the time, money and expense associated with traveling to these centers and use the technology instead to buy and sell diamonds around the globe.
At the wholesale level, diamonds are still purchased by professional diamond buyers looking at each stone with their eyes and touching them with their fingers.
There’s a reason for this. It’s the only way to truly know what you’re getting.
Meanwhile, every day, on the retail side of this equation, you’ll find wide-eyed and hopeful diamond shoppers eagerly spending their hard earned money—before they’ve even seen, let alone, touched the beauty (or, heaven forbid, the non-beauty) that came from the earth.
Imagine if you would for a moment your response to the following line of conversation if it happened to you. Let’s say you walk into a jewelry store and say to the person behind the counter; “Hi, I‘d like very much to see a 1.00 carat round diamond”. The person behind the counter smiles warmly and says, ”Oh, of course, that’s absolutely no problem. Please give me your credit card, I’ll just charge $6000 against your account and when you come back in three to five days I’ll show you your diamond.”
Sounds crazy right?
Well, that’s exactly what happens every day on the Internet.
The common wisdom most online diamond merchants would have their customers subscribe to is that diamonds are nothing more than a commodity. They’ll assert diamonds are, at their essence, nothing more than a common element that can be easily graded and evaluated using the “4C’s” method of carat weight, cut, color and clarity. Thus, all an online shopper has to do is look at the merchant’s Website, select the best-specifications they can find on a diamond at the price point they want to pay and click buy it now. Then, three to five days later, they get to see what they bought.
Here’s the rub though—it doesn’t work like that—no two diamonds are the same.
Two descriptions on paper can be absolutely identical. Yet the stones they describe can look as different to the eye as night and day. This is why you can do a Web search on a 1.00 carat round brilliant cut diamond with H color and SI1 clarity, with an excellent cut and you’ll find a plethora of stones with prices ranging from $4900 to $6900.
Okay, you say, that one’s easy. You just buy the most expensive one—it will be the best.
No, it doesn’t work that way either.
Each and every diamond you’ll ever see is as unique as two snowflakes. When you buy online like that, what you’re really buying is a piece of paper certifying your diamond purchase falls within a certain set of parameters. But that certification has very little bearing on how the diamond will actually look on your loved ones’ finger.
It is our job at AB&L Jewelers to educate you while we help you find the perfect diamond. We take the time to completely explain the 4 C’s and why each one of these categories affects the price per carat. With this personal approach, we find out what is important to you so we can then help you select your ideal stone from among 10 one-carat diamonds, rather than just one that looks right on the screen. You’ll hold it, feel it and personally examine it with all of the proper aids professionals use to supplement your natural eyes.
Further, it’s entirely risk free. The prices here in our store (for something you’ve actually held in your hand) are LESS than those you’ll find for the largely unquantified stones you’ll find on the Internet.
Before you get roped into the questionable idea of shopping for a diamond online, visit AB&L Jewelers. We guarantee you both an education and a highly pleasurable shopping experience you will never forget. Apples to apples, diamond for diamond, no one will sell you a comparable diamond for less.