Updated: Jul 13, 2022
We were talking this week with a very good client of ours and a close friend of our business about a purchase she'd made on the high street a while back and she posed a question that we actually get asked a lot about the traditional diamond jewellery market. Had she been ripped off? We thought we'd try and relate her issues in this blog as they're actually very relevant to the cornerstones of our own business - especially since the answer to this question demonstrates precisely what it is we're all about and what we're trying to achieve. We Love Diamonds are actually working diligently to entirely disrupt the whole existing diamond jewellery marketplace by bringing genuine value and transparency into it and shunning the rip-off culture in favour of building long-term, equitable relationships based on fair pricing with our customers.
Long story short; our friend had bought a pair of diamond earrings relatively recently for £1,000 from a high street retailer. She had worn them just a couple of times but had subsequently decided that they weren't really what she wanted anymore for whatever reason. She asked us why it was though that when she went to sell them back on the high street she'd recovered less than £200 of that £1,000 initial price despite them still being in near-perfect condition. This seems like a simple question but it's actually a multi-faceted question in terms of our whole industry as it goes to the core of its rampant greed and profiteering. Why is this the case? Well, firstly, she could of course just sold them privately on a traditional outlet like eBay or on a Facebook store and maybe recouped anywhere up to £400 or £500. That's just a given. Sell a car privately for example and your wallet will be always be fatter than if you had gone to a car dealer - they're just the facts of life (especially when all commercial entities literally have to add a mark-up). And hey, there's no mystery or smoke and mirrors with us in this regard as it's not like we sell our own diamond jewellery at the same price we buy it for as that would be unsustainable and we're not a charity. Of course we add a mark-up! You buy luxury diamond jewellery from us and we make a fair profit. But our definition of what represents a fair profit seems to vary dramatically from 99% of other providers. The really big difference between us and practically everyone else out there is that we're just very transparent about our pricing and we are certainly not greedy. We don't and won't mark our jewellery up by between 300% and 1,000% of it's real value (and sometimes more) like virtually everyone else does. We actually find that behaviour abhorrent and unnecessary, especially when we're all about repeat business and customer loyalty. We get our diamonds and diamond jewellery at well below traditional distribution rates and we only ever add a reasonable premium which leaves it priced at or around its real actual value. Trust us - in this marketplace, that's really, really unique and refreshing! So here's the actual unspoken equation of why our friend realised just £200 from a £1,000 investment that she'd made just weeks earlier. We know for an absolute fact that the diamond earrings she had purchased from the very well known high street jeweller will only have cost them £150 or less because, like most jewellers, we buy many of the same items from the same distributors (we make a lot of our own diamond jewellery we but also buy pieces from trade providers). It may actually surprise you to learn that most jewellers are only shopkeepers and they make nothing themselves. Except profit. Even the cost for us or anyone else to bespokely manufacturer those earrings using the same diamonds and gold (plus labour) would have been more-or-less the same price anyway, perhaps even a little lower. The big difference with We Love Diamonds though is that we exclusively enjoy a discount of up to 40% compared to other diamond buyers so, for us, we'd have only paid around £90 to £100 for that same item in the first place. Using our business rules, we'd only have then sold it for around £200. Why do we do that when we could, like all the other guys, have sold them for a lot more? Because we are fair and realistic and we are absolutely geared towards winning customer loyalty and securing repeat business. We believe that mentality will deliver us more profit over time. There are some examples of this in practice below where we show you real comparisons from the online world for the same item from us versus competitors. Extrapolate those examples to the high street and those examples would all be priced double what our over-priced online competitors already charge! Anyway, the moral of the story is that if our friend had bought the exact same item of diamond jewellery from us then she'd have recovered more-or-less the same price as what she'd paid for it in the first place, even used, because we always sell at below-market-values to start with. Since she'd bought it on the high street she'd paid an enormous and completely unjustified premium and had only recovered the scrap value of the precious metal weight and the value of the diamonds used. It's worth pointing out that she could have bought it online from another digital provider but they'd still have likely charged her £450 to £600. While other online retailers don't mark diamond jewellery up quite as much as the high street - they still add a premium in massive multiples of what we do here at We Love Diamonds! Worse, she could have ended up being sold a lab diamond (fake / artificial diamond) at or around the same price (which has zero resale value) and/or got the earrings on silver or on worthless plated jewellery. We can't tell you how often we see jewellery being sold with artificial lab diamonds or cubic zirconia and which are merely set on plated metals or silver which is very, very cheap right now. And these are often all being sold well above our own rates for authentic diamonds on solid precious metals like gold and platinum! To really put things into context for you, here are a few very good like-for-like examples. Firstly, this is our own diamond initial ring that we sell on our webshop here for just £295 with free and rapid delivery (typically sameday despatch) plus all the other major value-adds we include as part of our market-leading service:
A major London based online diamond jewellery provider sells almost the same ring as ours above (it actually has a smaller diamond carat size than us) for a whopping £520 plus an additional shipping cost of £39.18 (and they only commit to deliver in 8 to 13 days). With the shipping included then that is 190% the price of our far superior ring!
Search around a little more for time based special offers and we again found almost the same ring currently being sold for a limited period at £377 instead of their usual £577 but, even at that price, it's still 128% the price of us and it also has a diamond carat size that's a third smaller.
Can you buy for less than us anywhere? Not even close for a like-for-like piece i.e. a genuinely natural diamond initial ring presented on solid gold. In the image below though is a fairly similar ring that is presented on sterling silver (sterling silver is incredibly cheap and worth next to nothing). That still retails for £160 and has a delivery time of up to 8 weeks. Very over-priced!
Finally, here's what we, as experts, believe to be the worst deal of all. Being sold here online by a major provider is a lab diamond / fake diamond that is less than half the carat size of our own authentic natural diamond initial ring and it's also being sold on 925 silver for £139. Not only does the actual lab diamond have zero resale value or any intrinsic value at all anyway, the silver itself is worth next-to-nothing (which is perhaps why they also promote this ring with a video that shows the gold version of it). Our appraisers would probably value this at around £15.
Some key questions and concerns have been raised here. Does the high street retailer actually care? No because unless they're a respected international retail brand like Tiffany then they simply don't expect to ever see you again anyway so they have one shot one kill. They absolutely have to take you for everything you have when you walk in their door and remember - they carry naturally high overheads as a business - bricks are a lot more expensive than clicks. There are only a tiny handful of brands like Tiffany who are able to at least add some notional value to their products by virtue of their brand and heritage but the rest basically add zero value. So do the various other online jewellery outlets care more? Not from what we see - the fact is that we're really not aware of any other online venture who's commercial ethos is entirely based around repeat business and fair pricing so, again, you're likely to get just as chiselled by them because they only think short term and they always go straight for the massive mark-up (albeit a mark-up that's slightly smaller than the high street outfits but which are, all the same, over-inflated). Chances are high too that you'll have bought them having seen what's just a CGI representation of the item as is the trend with most other online retailers (by the way - we only ever use actual photographs of our diamond jewellery in our webstore). So what would we have done any different at We Love Diamonds? Firstly, that same item of like-for-like jewellery sold at retail from us would never have been priced at no more than £200 to £250. And yes, even then, we'd still have made a healthy profit despite all our remarkable value-adds. Ultimately, we know that's the real, fair and realistic price. As we often say - our entire enterprise is based on us selling luxury diamond jewellery at way below market values and predicating our business on repeat business and customer delight. We deliver that by leveraging our massive economies of scale and our unique buying power and absolutely not by adding ridiculous, greedy and overly-inflated premiums. In summary, it's highly likely our friend would have immediately recouped the price (or at least close to the price) of what she'd paid for her diamond earrings if she'd just come to us in the first place. And that's how it should be and why it is that we're dramatically disrupting what has entirely been a closed-shop industry that's very much loaded against you from the start. Diamonds and luxury diamond jewellery isn't cheap. For good reason. But they shouldn't be priced how they are in 99% of outlets. Demand better. And if this blog piece has got you thinking about diamond earrings then check out some of our own beautiful diamond earrings in our webstore here (and don't forget that you can often pay in easy instalments too with Klarna and now PayPal). Want some more reasons why we're miles apart from our competition? Just watch our quick video below or have a look at the Why Choose Us page here!