Blue Nile’s Origins
Blue Nile is one of the best-known names when it comes to buying an engagement ring online. Founded in 1999, they were one of the very first jewelers that allowed shoppers to customize a diamond engagement ring from the comfort of their home.18 years later, they are still empowering shoppers to learn about diamonds and get the best deal on their engagement ring. As the largest online jeweler in the world, their vast assortment of diamonds and settings gives them a significant advantage in the market today.
Whether you are looking to build your dream ring from their selection of loose diamond and settings, or want to select a preset engagement ring from their most popular styles to take the guesswork out of the process, Blue Nile has a ring for you.
Is a Blue Nile Diamond Cheaper
For many shoppers, Blue Nile was their first encounter with the money-saving potential of buying an engagement ring, or other fine jewelry online. With no rent, salesperson commissions and very little advertising overhead, Blue Nile was able to sell their diamonds at prices that were previously unheard of in the industry. Although other jewelers have since joined them online, Blue Nile still maintains some of the benefits of being the first mover in the industry.
First, due to their position in the industry, Blue Nile has been able to create an extensive database of diamonds, most held by wholesalers. By not physically housing the diamonds themselves, Blue Nile has reduced their inventory costs, are able to offer a huge selection of diamonds, and sell them at slim margins.
By not tying up their money in diamond inventory, Blue Nile has been able to focus their efforts on developing an extensive selection of engagement ring and other jewelry styles to offer customers shopping on their site. The strength of their brand name also helped them to develop relationships and partnerships with renowned lifestyle brands including Vera Wang, Monique L’Hullier, and Colin Cowie to create exclusive wedding jewelry lines which can not be found anywhere else while maintaining their price advantage over the retail outlet competition.
Blue Nile clearly posts their Conflict-Free diamond policy on their website for all to see. The support the Kimberly Process which was created in 2003 to track and certify diamonds. By documenting the origins of the stone, we are able to track that all diamonds sold come from legitimate channels and not from conflict zones or areas with human rights violations. Blue Nile does not sell diamonds from Zimbabwe’s Marange district, which has been noted for human rights violations.
So where do Blue Nile diamonds come from? With their large wholesaler network, they have access to diamonds mined around the world from Australia, to Russia, Africa and Canada. Their diamonds are warranted to be conflict-free and they maintain that if any of their suppliers were found to be in violation of the Kimberly Process they would immediately sever ties with them.
International Engagement Ring Shoppers
For shoppers outside the United States, Blue Nile is a great option for purchasing an engagement ring at a great price with little hassle. Even with import duties, a Blue Nile engagement ring is often a more affordable option than purchasing in your local market. Customers can shop Blue Nile’s site in a variety of local currencies, including New Zealand Dollar, Singapore Dollar, United Arab Emirates Dirham, Japanese Yen and Australian Dollars.
International shipping is free, and insurance is provided for a cost of 0.2% of the purchase price by a global insurance company – protecting your purchase form the time it leaves Blue Nile’s facility until it arrives at your door in your home country.
When it comes to customs, duties and taxes on your jewelry purchase, Blue Nile makes it easier than ever. If you are shipping to Canada, China, the United Arab Emirates or China, these fees will be collected in your Blue Nile shopping cart, with nothing else to do. In other countries, you will be contacted once your purchase arrives in your home country for payment of any duties owed.
Blue Nile Vs James Allen
Both retailers are at the top of the industry and offer great prices and many benefits to shoppers, but that doesn’t stop potential engagement ring buyers from constantly comparing the two. Here are some of the ways Blue Nile comes out on top:
- Largest online diamond inventory, including fancy shapes, and exclusive Astor diamonds.
- Free International shipping for overseas customers with seamless customer support.
- Access to an extensive variety of setting options, including exclusive designer styles.
- Multiple payment options including financing, wire transfer (with 1.5% discount) PayPal, and major credit cards.
Take a look at this chart to see how the two retailers stack up.