(3 Minute Read)
Shopping for jewellery online is becoming more popular every year and it's not hard to see why!
Online jewellers don't need to buy or rent expensive storefronts, require fewer staff to manage day to day operations and have lower insurance costs and security overheads. As a result they can set their prices much more competitively than traditional high street jewellers and the savvy shopper can take advantage of this for some serious savings!
When looking for jewellery online you also have instant access to sellers all over the world, making it easy to find exactly what you're looking for and then compare prices to make sure you're getting the best deal.
However, due to the precious nature of jewellery it's essential that you take certain precautions before you make a purchase...
1. Only Buy from Reputable Companies
You should do a bit of background research on the business that you're buying from. Most online retailers will not only be selling through their own website but will also have shops on popular marketplaces such as Etsy, eBay and Amazon. This is a great way to make sure that the business has a good reputation for quality, communication and reliability.
Searching for a companies other storefronts is also a simple way to quickly find authenticated customer reviews! You can see that with a quick Google search for "Lillicoco Etsy" and "Lillicoco eBay" we've been able to find more than 60 customer recommendations straight away, which aren't visible on the main website.
2. Contact Information
Make sure that the company has a phone number and email address listed on their website in a visible location. Reputable businesses will encourage you to get in touch with them by making this information clear and accessible.
If you're considering an expensive purchase then it won't hurt to give the seller a call to ask any questions you may have over the phone. After all, you want to make sure that they know what they're talking about!
3. Always Check for The Lock
All reputable online jewellers will have SSL encryption on their website so that your card details are protected. To check for this simply look at the URL of the website and make sure that it starts with "https" (rather than just "http"). You should see a little lock icon either next to the URL or in the status bar at the bottom of your screen. If you don't see this then your card information might not be safe and you shouldn't buy through the website.
Go and have a look at some of your favourite shopping sites and you should notice that the lock is there on every single one!
You should never give a business your credit card details over the phone or in an email for the same reason.
By paying with a credit card (rather than a debit card) or through Paypal you have a certain amount of protection against fraud. You can read this article at MoneySupermarket for more information about credit card fraud protection.
5. Read Item Descriptions Carefully
When you're looking at precious jewellery online the detail is important.
Read carefully to make sure you don't miss little words like "plated" or "rolled" for gold, "synthetic" for gemstones and "cultured" for pearls, unless that's what you're looking for of course! All of these terms are commonplace so make sure that you know exactly what you're buying before you get our your credit card.
Take real care when examining the photographs. Look at details like the bolt-rings (to attach a necklace) on pendants or lockets and the settings and claws on a ring to make sure that there is no damage that isn't in the description. If the pictures are unclear then you could be taking a risk when making a purchase so if in doubt, ask for more photos!
You should also take care when reading the weight and dimensions of the item to make that you know how big or small it is in real life. You don't want to be surprised when you take it out of the box!
You have so much choice available online these days when it comes to buying jewellery that it can be almost overwhelming. Take the time to make sure that you can trust a seller before parting with your money and if you're in any doubt at all then walk away!