Wednesday, December 5, 2012

5 Online Jewelry Shopping Tips

As someone that not only sells jewelry online, I love to support the handmade market with my own purchases. Well, it's not like I am out to save the economy one purchase at a time but I definitely love finding beautiful, unique and quality jewelry for comparable if not BETTER prices than I would find at my local department store. I like knowing that someone's heart and talent went into creating the item rather than something that was mass-produced most likely in another country and very possibly in an exploitative environment.

So how does one go about shopping for accessories online? I think there are a few rules of thumb that will help insure you are getting something you will be glad you invested in. Below are a few of my personal favorites:

1. I try to always buy US Made when it comes to accessories. I'd say 95% of my accessories purchases have been from home grown artists from the US. There are so many talented and creative people here in our own backyard, I rarely can justify buying anywhere else. I definitely feel better knowing I am helping to support our own domestic artists and economy by doing so. (Did you know Zahoomi has made a new commitment to offer only US made items in their online marketplace?)

2. I make sure that contact information is readily available. I've actually made impulse buys and didn't check to see if the seller's contact information is made easily available to it's customers. It's a red flag if any company or seller doesn't make communication with them a priority. Almost every time I've bought without checking this first, I've regretted it. k

3. Ask questions. Sellers are, for the most part, ready and willing to answer any questions. If I'm not sure about something from the pictures I ask. The answers are always (so far) prompt, informative and courteous. Communicating with the seller may help to fill in details you don't see covered in the picture or description. 

4. Lastly, Use the imagination. I sometimes forget what a valuable tool this is when shopping online. Pictures are very helpful but they are still flat compared to real life. I've found when I remember to use my imagination it adds a whole new facet to shopping for accessories and clothes online. I've made great purchases of items that I was about to pass buy when I remembered to take a minute to really envision it with one of my outfits. One of my favorite scenarios is jeans and a V-neck T-shirt. I imagine the bracelet or necklace or earrings being worn with this simple yet timeless combo. It's a great canvas to determine the "WOW" factor of a piece that otherwise I would've passed right by. 

5. Shop by color. I love this feature. Zahoomi added it awhile back and a few other sites use it as well. Shopping for jewelry online can be really overwhelming! There are a million amazing artists out there with a gajillion amazing pieces to offer! Shopping by color brings it into focus a bit, narrowing all of the info into bite size portions. I like that.

So those are the ways in which I find my way through the infinite number of choices that are before us in this new age of online marketing. Because of this new frontier we can support our economy, support local artists, find great deals on unique items that not everyone will have because we all shop at the same store and we can avoid the crowds and stress of the mall, the store and the parking lot. Sounds like a win/win situation to me!

Do you have any tricks to shopping online? What do you avoid? What attracts you? Please share your experiences and join me in the Jewelry Journey!


Reprinted with permission from:

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