So, you’ve been looking to purchase a quality gemstone on the internet and you need some help determining what characteristics you should be looking for in a quality gem?
There are 5 simple rules to help you to become a successful buyer and to avoid unnecessary pin-falls.
1. Why are you buying the gemstone?
So what do you want this gemstone for? Is it for setting into a ring? Or is it for a pendant or a pair of Earrings? It is an important question to ask as some gemstones are not suitable for certain application due to the hardness and durability of the stone. Every gemstone has a hardness rating (on a scale of 1 to 10). Some stones are very hard (like diamond, ruby and sapphire) and some are quite soft (like opal, sphene and fluorite). Softer stones are not suitable for rings, because rings typically are more prone to knocks and scratches. However, they are fine for pendants or pins or earrings, where they are less likely to be damaged.
You would also need to consider your preference for gem type, color, shape and size. If you have your heart set on a sapphire, that would make your search easier. However, if you only want a brilliant blue stone for a pendant, you might want to narrow your search to a group of gems, such as kyanite, aquamarine and sapphire.
What gem you will go for would then depend on how much you are willing to spend. Attractive natural gems come in many prices which range from $5 to several thousands. It is unlikely you will find a AAA quality natural huge size sapphire or ruby for $5, but you can find many beautiful stones like kyanite at a price range which is very affordable. The next important factor to consider will be the shape and size of the stone. If you want a stone for a pendant, a PEAR shape larger stone will probably be suitable. However, this would really depend on your personal likings.
These are some of the important questions you have to ask yourselve first.
The key to a successful buy is to get the best possible stone for the best price. It’s all about getting the best value for your money.
2. Where should you search for the gemstone?
Ebay has a very good search engine which you can use to search what you are looking for. You can narrow your search by using the category selection. For example, if you are looking for a Oval shape cut blue sapphire, you can select under jewelry & Watches, under Loose Diamonds & Gemstones, under Loose Gemstones, under sapphire, under blue and under Oval category. You are refining your search to a category which sellers list their items based on specific gem type, color and shape.
3. Who should you buy it from??
Now that you have in mind what you really want and are able to search what you are looking for, the next question will be:- who should you buy it from? This is a very good question to consider. Who can you trust? Who has the best prices? Who ships reliably? Who has a fair return policy?
Good Feedback and longevity are two important factors to consider in selecting a trusted supplier. Good sellers guard their reputation as much as they do their bottom line. Feedback rating does show their reputation. However, feedback rating alone may not get you a clear picture. There are many gemstone sellers at Ebay. Some of them are honest and reliable and sell quality product. If they’re not, they don’t stay in business for very long. How long they had been around is also another important factor to consider.
Here’s a short list of what to look for:
* Does the seller provide his company name, physical address, phone, fax and email? Don’t deal with someone who tries to hide his identity.
* Had the seller been in business for at least a few years? Bad companies rarely survive that long.
* Is the seller committed to customer satisfaction? Some sellers just want to make a sale. However, good sellers want you as a long term customer. Looking at the detailed feedback rating profile helps to determine if the seller is committed to this.
* Does the seller provide accurate photos and descriptions for each individual stone? Don’t buy a stone without detailed information of that specific stone.
* Is the seller forthcoming with information about gem treatments? An honest seller will disclose all treatments. Does he provide lots of reference information so you can educate yourself about the gems he has for sale?
4. Where is the seller located?
Where the seller is located may be a factor to consider. It would determine if the seller is close to the source of gemstone and where the seller is buying the gemstone from. The closer to the source the seller is getting the gemstone means that less middle hands are involved and thus they can sell the gemstone at a better price. You may also want to consider if the seller is buying the gemstone in volume. If seller is buying in volume, that would mean they are buying at a lower cost and thus they can also provide the gemstone at a better price. The economy of scale does work here.
5. How should you pay for the gemstone?
Pay for online purchases with a payment method that offers you good consumer protection. Paying thru PayPal is a good method to consider. Do not pay by money order or wire transfer or any method that leaves you at no recourse if you are unhappy with your purchase.
Hope you find this article useful.