The 8-Step Checklist for Buying Engagement Rings Online
Drop off dry cleaning, pick up dog food, workout, wash car, call mum, book dinner, reschedule dentist and buy an engagement ring. Nope, that’s not the checklist. That’s just today’s list… to squeeze in around eight hours of work and Game of Thrones.
Yep, life’s hectic. But what if you didn’t have to schedule in trips to five different jewellers to buy an engagement ring? What if you could do it at the gym, dentist, or car wash cafe and kill two birds with one big shiny carbon stone, right from your iPhone? Or even better…at home.
Photography by georgerudy
Buying engagement rings online isn’t a new concept, but one many couples approach with caution, and rightly so. While the benefits of online shopping are clear… added convenience, less travel and avoiding appointments with pushy salespeople… all online purchases – particularly those involving significant financial and emotional investment – require research.
Use this checklist when buying an engagement ring online to ensure you’re getting the best service, value, quality and aftercare for a memorable proposal that goes to plan.
- READ REVIEWS… THOROUGHLY
Reviews are a great starting point for any online purchase. A business might use crafty copy to inflate their reputation on their website, but third-party sites are designed to provide authentic, unedited feedback from real-life buyers who have purchased before.
Read jewellers’ Facebook and Google Reviews to determine customer satisfaction with all aspects of a jeweller’s products and services, particularly relating to engagement rings.
If you discover negative comments, read the jeweller’s response to see if they accept responsibility and how they process this feedback in the event that you run into post-purchase issues yourself.
Photography by bramgino
- CHECK INDUSTRY MEMBERSHIPS
Industry memberships are another indication of a jeweller’s credibility. In addition to GIA-certified diamonds, check if the jeweller holds memberships to other reputable industry organisations like the Jewellers’ Association of Australia and the Gemmological Association of Australia, holding them accountable to strict codes of conduct regarding quality and ethics.
Membership to the Jewellers’ Association of Australia, for example, ensures jewellers have adequate insurance cover and a clean track record of zero matters brought before a consumer affairs department.
- ASK ABOUT EXCHANGE & REFUNDS
Engagement rings that have been purchased online without modification should come with a 30-day exchange and refund guarantee. Ensure you’ve read the jeweller’s terms and conditions relating to return of goods and find out about any postage fees.
These guarantees give you an opportunity to see the ring in real life and experience it sparkling under various lights to ensure it’s exactly what you want. As long as the packaging and product are returned in their original condition and the ring was not altered during the ordering process, there should be no issues exchanging or refunding your engagement ring within the specified time frame.
Photography by William W. Potter
- REQUEST A FREE RING SIZER TOOL
One of the biggest objections to ordering an engagement ring online is not being able to physically try it on for size, so find a jeweller that offers a free ring sizer tool, which can be delivered by mail, or instantly printed at home.
With a plastic ring sizer tool, you can accurately measure the size for your engagement ring without having to go in-store. If the proposal is a surprise, match an existing ring to the sizer tool, or if your partner is involved in the buying process, have them pop a couple of rings from the plastic sheet and try each until they find a perfect fit.
- CHOOSE A JEWELLER THAT’S ACCESSIBLE
It’s important for online jewellers to provide multiple channels of communication to make it easy to gather all the information you need to reach a decision, fast.
Jewellers who offer a Live Chat facility on their website are typically super-responsive to customer enquiries, so if you don’t receive an instant reply, you’re likely to get answers within a couple of hours.
An email address, phone number, contact form and social media handles should also be available on their website and enquiries through any channel should take no longer than 48 hours for a response. Any longer could be an indication of lousy aftercare service, so keep this in mind when ordering online.
Photography by Leszek Czerwonka
- CHECK FOR EXTRAS
If you’ve narrowed your options down to two or three engagement rings online, but you’re struggling to pick a winner, compare the extras you receive from each jeweller…
- Do they offer a free cleaning kit to maintain the brilliance of your ring from home?
- Do they offer free lifetime aftercare cleaning every six months to keep your engagement ring in peak condition?
- Do they offer a complimentary inspection service with competitively priced repairs and quick turnarounds?
If it’s a close tie between rings from different jewellers, consider these extras and what’s important post-purchase to maintain your ring structurally and aesthetically long-term.
Image via SH Jewellery
- CONFIRM SHIPPING & INSURANCE COSTS
Before getting emotionally attached, check the website’s shipping and insurance costs – if the price seems too good to be true, you might be surprised with excessive shipping fees at checkout.
Also check that insurance is included with shipping and refer to these costs when comparing jewellers. Anything more than $60 for Australia-wide secure delivery with insurance included and you can definitely find a cheaper alternative.
Photography by Voyagerix
- ENQUIRE ABOUT PRICE BEAT GUARANTEES
A jeweller who is confident in their pricing and the quality of their products will gladly offer a price beat guarantee, so keep this in mind if you find a similar lower-priced diamond engagement ring on another website.
If the lower-priced diamond meets your preferred jeweller’s qualifications, they should happily honour their competitor’s price without making you jump through hoops.
When you buy online with an Australian jeweller, all the standard Australian consumer laws apply, so rest assured there is legislation in place to support you in the event of any unlikely issue.
Keep in mind that when buying online from an overseas jeweller, your consumer rights may vary, and it can be difficult or costly to have your engagement ring exchanged, refunded or repaired in order to uphold warranty obligations.
Shopping online with local diamond and jewellery specialists ensures you receive dedicated support, quick repairs, easy exchanges/refunds, and your purchase is covered by standard Australian consumer legislation.
If you’re ready to buy an engagement ring online, request a free ring sizer tool and start browsing reviews to help you find a local jeweller you can trust with one of life’s most previous investments.
Ms Zebra Says: It can be daunting purchasing such an investment, especially online. However, thanks to SH Jewellery, it’s not impossible! Thanks for this great checklist to go by.
About the author SH Jewellery: As an independent jeweller, the SH Jewellery collection is exclusive to our brand, allowing us full creative freedom over the look and feel of our engagement rings and wedding bands. All our rings are designed in-house at our Springvale showroom, combining decades of design history with modern influences from across the globe.