These days, you can buy almost anything online, including engagement rings, wedding bands, and other fine jewelry pieces. There are some benefits to doing your shopping on the web, like being able to compare prices easily and complete your purchase with a click of a button. However, while virtual shopping can make buying some things much more convenient, there are a number of reasons why it isn’t the best option when you’re jewelry shopping. Shopping for fine jewelry in person just has so many advantages over shopping online-- and shopping in person at a local, independently owned jeweler (rather than at a big box jeweler) has even more advantages. Wondering what choosing to shop at a local jewelry boutique can do for you? Below, we’ve rounded up a list of some of the advantages of shopping with an independent jeweler.
Personalized Customer Service
A local jeweler can provide a level of customer service that you simply cannot get at a big box jewelry retailer (and you certainly can’t get from a website). While big jewelry stores are typically all about making a fast sale, an independent jeweler focuses on providing personalized service. For example, at our showroom, we take the time to get to know every customer. We want to help our customers find the piece they need today, but also ensure that they’re a customer for life. We’re focused on building relationships, not on profit margins or pushing sales.
The team at an independent jeweler can typically provide a high level of knowledge, which is rarely the case at big jewelry chains. Big box jewelers tend to have a lot of employee turnover, which leads to them having under trained employees. Independent jewelers, on the other hand, will usually have longtime employees that have an expert understanding of diamonds, gemstones, and jewelry designs. Being able to speak with a knowledgeable jeweler when picking out a piece is extremely important, since you’ll be getting assistance from someone who can easily guide you toward what you need and help you understand exactly what you’re purchasing.
Future Jewelry Repair & Cleaning
Image Courtesy of National Jeweler
All jewelry needs occasional maintenance and cleaning. Eventually, diamonds will get covered in oil or dust, white gold jewelry will need to be redipped, sterling silver will tarnish, prongs will become slightly loose, and so on. When you shop at a local jeweler, you have a built in place to get all your regular jewelry services-- and you may also have access to free services, depending on where you shop. For instance, at Diamond & Design, we offer complimentary jewelry cleanings and inspections to all of our customers, so you never have to pay for a future jewelry cleaning or inspection when you purchase a piece from our showroom.
Seeing Quality in Person
There’s just no substitution for seeing and trying on a piece of jewelry in person. As many people who have bought jewelry online know, pictures can be deceiving. The right framing, lighting, and editing can make a piece of jewelry look more brilliant or high quality than it actually is in real life. But when you shop at a physical store, you can inspect the quality and beauty of a piece in person before you make a purchase. You can see how a diamond catches the light, see how the proportions of a piece look on you, and feel how well made a piece of jewelry is with your own hands.
Independent Jeweler Warranties & Guarantees
Most jewelry companies will offer some type of warranty or guarantee. However, the warranties and guarantees offered by small jewelers are usually much more protective than the ones offered by big box or online jewelers. Local, independent jewelers are much more likely to offer true lifetime warranties, whereas big jewelry chains and websites tend to offer very limited warranties with a high number of restrictions hidden in their fine print.
Curated Selection & Unique Pieces
Image Courtesy of Green Lake
When it comes to jewelry collections, both online jewelers and big box jewelers tend to focus more on quantity than quality. Independently owned jewelers, on the other hand, are typically much more thoughtful when picking out pieces to carry in their store. For example, at our showroom we only carry pieces that were created by well-respected, United States based jewelry designers, which helps us ensure that every piece we offer is impeccably made. We also hand select the pieces we carry to ensure that we carry a diverse range of unique designs, including many one-of-a-kind designs that we stock only once.
We hope this list has been helpful if you’re searching for the best place to buy fine jewelry. Whether you’re in our area or in any other part of the world, we think that you’ll be much happier if you choose to take advantage of the benefits of shopping at a local, independently owned jeweler.
If you are in our area here in Southern California and you have any questions about shopping at our independently owned jewelry store, we’d love to hear from you. You can reach out with any questions you may have about shopping with us, our in stock selection, or our custom jewelry design services by calling us at 909.393.1016 or by visiting Diamond & Design during our regular business hours. We look forward to speaking with you!