Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine (February 2006 issue) included an article entitled "Clicks & Stones" that discussed the value you can now get with online diamond retailers.
In an industry famous for high markups and perpetual closeout sales, diamond e-tailers have brought clarity and competition to pricing jewelry. Scott Devitt, a senior analyst at Legg Mason says, “They expose diamonds for the commodities they are.”
E-tailers’ costs are lower than for local jewelers because they spend less on labor, leases, inventory, display cases, special lighting and all the other expenses that the diamond shopper can not wear out of the store. Because of the better values available with diamond e-tailers, the online retailers sold about $340 million in engagement ring sales in 2005. Since local jewelry store prices are often double those for online retailers, that equates to a lot of diamonds and the trend continues to increase.
The article mentions that the online diamond shopper’s biggest concern seems to be that you have to buy the diamond without seeing them in advance. An aid to diamond shoppers is that the cut of the diamond can be indicated by the information on the certifications. The AGS certifications have a cut grade and starting in January of this year, the GIA will start providing a cut grade for round diamonds. However, most shapes other than round brilliant diamonds do not currently have cut grades and getting a beautiful diamond is a little more complicated. The challenge for the typical diamond shoppers is how to know about diamond cut, color, clarity and other characteristics to know what the best diamonds are going to be on the online retailers’ inventory listing.
What clients at Diamond Source of Virginia have discovered is that they can have their own personal diamond consultant help them find the best diamonds in the country and the prices are lower than local jewelry stores and even lower than the heavily advertised online companies.
Diamond Source of Virginia is unique as a diamond retailer:
Clients can examine the diamond before purchasing
Return shipping is free to client if they are not completely satisfied with the diamond
Clients do not have to pick from a list of diamonds on a web site because diamond consultants conduct a free, personalized search of hundreds of cutters and wholesalers (over 400,000 diamonds) to find the best diamonds meeting the client’s shopping requirements.
Diamond consultants who conduct the personalized search are diamond experts who are able to find the best cut diamonds with the biggest millimeter size and best value.
Consultants only recommend GIA and AGS certified diamonds and are careful to exclude medium or higher fluorescence, girdle or culet problems, and other issues that the average diamond shopper probably does not even know to avoid.
Provide a wide range of mountings and custom designers to compliment the beautiful diamonds.
While most online diamond retailers do not allow customers to come to their office, Diamond Source of Virginia welcomes anyone within driving distance of Richmond, Virginia to examine the diamond in one of the private viewing rooms. For diamond jewelry buyers who want the very low prices of the online retailer but also want the personal touch of a brick-and-mortar retailer, Diamond Source of Virginia is the best of both worlds.