Have you glanced into your local jewelry store lately? Unless there happens to be a major women's gift holiday around the corner, they probably looked a little desolate. "Brick and mortar" jewelry stores seem to be falling on hard times recently, and one contributing factor is the growth of online jewelry auctions sites.
Online jewelry auctions are becoming more popular because they are easy, enjoyable and provide a wider choice than most retail stores. What could be easier than sitting at your computer and moving a mouse around? That's all it really takes to find and participate in online jewelry auctions. And as transportation costs continue to rise, being able to shop at home will become even more attractive.
Online jewelry auctions, like all live auctions, can also be quite fun. There's a lot of excitement and (usually) friendly competition as people try to get the best items at the lowest price.
Finally, online jewelry auctions often are able to offer you a wider choice of items than you normally find in a single store. That's because auctions bring together a variety of sellers in one location. They may be sourcing their jewelry from a variety of craftsmen around the world, so you never can be sure what exotic finds you may run across.
Unfortunately, you should be wary when shopping online. There really are con artists, although there are plenty of those in the real world as well. When you take normal precautions, you probably don't have any more chance of being cheated online than you do offline. In most cases, following some simple, common-sense guidelines will keep you safe and secure.
Almost all online jewelry auctions will include photos of the item up for sale. Pay special attention to the photo. Does it really portray the item described? Make sure it's not scanned out of a magazine or catalog. You really ought to look for real photos of real items.
If there's something about the jewelry that you can't make out in the photograph, contact the seller. They should be more than happy to answer your questions and address your concerns. If the seller replies with vague, unsatisfying answers, responds with anger or sarcasm, or doesn't respond at all, mark that item (and seller) off your list and move on. Online jewelry auctions sites are filled with plenty of quality items and friendly, knowledgeable sellers, so there's no reason to chase one of the bad apples.
When bidding on an item, pay special attention to the shipping charges. Some unscrupulous sellers may try to unload jewelry at a super low price, and then charge an exorbitant amount for shipping. Just make sure you check for extra costs up front and verify the method and price for shipping.
Many excellent jewelry items are sold by honest sellers located in countries other than yours. But when you're just starting out with online jewelry auctions, you might want to stick with sellers who reside in the same country you do. Not only will that make payment and shipping easier to handle, it also simplifies the process of solving any issues that might arise as a result of the sale.
Retail jewelry stores would probably rather you didn't know that there are fabulous online jewelry auctions happening 24 hours a day. They probably would prefer to have you at the mall instead of at your computer. It's not their fault, they just want to keep doing business they way they always have. But now that you know about online jewelry auctions, how will you ever be able to go back to the mall and pay those retail prices?