In the Market for an Engagement Ring? How to Protect Yourself When Purchasing Online

In the Market for an Engagement Ring? How to Protect Yourself When Purchasing Online article cover

Wedding rings symbolize union and commitment and are one of the most significant purchases you’ll ever make. No pressure, we’re here to help! Buying online is a great way to find the perfect ring and it can also save you money. You could end up spending 50% less than you would via the big box chains, which is pretty substantial. Sitejabber has received thousands of reviews regarding making this very important purchase online. We’d like to share what our community of reviewers has to say, so that you don’t have to learn anything the hard way. Here are a few issues to look out for:

Fake Diamonds

Sitejabber member, Sara D, had the following experience:

“We ordered our wedding rings and engagement ring, my rings were supposed to have real diamonds in them. Shortly after our wedding I noticed a chip in the stone in my ring, we took it to a pawn shop to have it tested and found that my rings did not have real diamonds in them.”

Bait and Switch

Sometimes items can go out of stock but beware of situations like the one Daniel P found himself in:

“After finding a diamond for an engagement ring and ordering it, they pulled the classic BAIT AND SWITCH! … the diamond was “no longer available.” …They said they would provide a diamond of higher quality for the same price, but, when I researched the diamond I found it on their web-site for LESS than I paid and it was of poorer polish, clarity and dimensions!”

We’ve also read stories where the ring that was shipped was clearly not the ring that was pictured on the site. Read Sean M’s review:

“The band that showed up in my mailbox looked nothing like the band that I “ordered”, it looked like an 8 year old with a dremel carved a pattern into my ring. This was a $2300 platinum ring, and it looks like a $50 ring.”

Loose Settings

The last thing you need to worry about is your diamond falling out of your ring and being lost but this is the unfortunate predicament Helene M found herself in:

Bought a ring last month. It’s pretty but has a defect; one of the prongs holding a diamond in place is bent. The diamond is loose. For some reason, I cannot reach the company to resolve this issue.”

Never Receiving the Ring

It’s hard to imagine that a business would not send what you’ve bought and paid for, but it happened to Carla W:

My boyfriend of 10 years and I bought an engagement ring here, it has been a month and still have not received it. Every time we email they say they are shipping it in two to three days and they never do. I’m starting to get worried that we won’t receive it before the big day.”

While scams do exist, we also see loads of happy consumers who’ve had great experiences. Here are some of our favorites:

“The ring significantly appraised for thousands more than I paid.”  -M.H. (

“We got my wife’s bridal wedding band and engagement ring here. They were very nice about shipping on time, and everything was beautifully packaged. The quality is great. Recommend to everyone.” -Kevin J. (

“The best part about buying jewelry online is you don’t have to deal with high pressure sales people working on commission.” -Dorothy B. (

“I loved how easily it was for me to build my engagement ring on the James Allen site… The prices are very competitive and my diamond arrived in perfect condition!” -Sarah W. (

“I bought my now wife’s engagement ring off the Shane Co website. It was easy and painless. I was clueless where to start and the site gently guided me through the process.” -Paul W. (

Tips for a Safe & Successful Online Ring Purchase

  • Buy from reputable companies where others have had success. A great place to start is the SiteJabber 2017 Top 10 Best Engagement Ring Stores Online List, but there are also many other great sites where our consumers have had success.
  • Find out where the items ship from and how long the company has been in business.
  • As soon as you receive your ring, have it appraised by a local jeweler.
  • Make sure the retailer offers a money back guarantee and ensure that they’re also clear about their return policies and procedures. This way, if your ring appraises for less than what you paid for it, you can take action.
  • Make sure diamonds are certified by an organization like the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) whose mission is to protect all buyers and sellers of gemstones by setting and maintaining the standards used to evaluate gemstone quality. Other reputable gem certificates are available from International Gemological Institute (IGI) and the American Gem Society (AGS) 
  • You will also want to be certain that the seller is going to insure your shipment to prevent unnecessary anxiety about the package being lost or stolen in transit.
  • Consider buying just the diamond online and getting the setting made locally.
  • Using a check, money order or debit card for your purchase can reduce your options for recourse if something goes wrong. Instead, use a credit card or PayPal. Most credit card issuers and PayPal offer dispute resolution in the event that the ring you purchase arrives damaged, isn’t the item you selected or doesn’t show up at all. Never pay via wire transfer, even if the company offers you a discount to do so. 

Making such a big purchase online may seem daunting but as long as you do your research by reading reviews, asking the right questions and taking measures to protect yourself, the experience can definitely be worthwhile. Shopping online gives you infinite options, is incredibly affordable and super simple. Congratulations on finding love!