Should You Buy an Engagement Ring Online or In-Store? Here’s How To Decide

Looking to buy an engagement ring, but unsure if you should order online or shop in store? Learn what to expect from each. 


There are few shopping experiences as equally exhilarating and overwhelming as the search for an engagement ring. Whether you’re choosing your own or flying solo with plans to surprise your partner, it’s not uncommon to embark on the journey only to realize you’re not actually sure how, much less where, to buy your dream engagement ring. Sure, there are plenty of websites and storefronts touting the perfect forever jewel, but the process itself can be more in-depth than buying, say, a new pair of jeans—though that’s certainly its own experience too. 

And, with such a dizzying array of options not to mention varying levels of craftsmanship and quality available, it can be hard to know where to start. The good news is you don’t have to go it alone. Today, meeting with an engagement ring specialist couldn’t be easier, whether you’re doing so in-store or virtually. Even better, regardless of the path you choose, you can take comfort in knowing all of our specialists here at Greenwich St. Jewelers are true experts who will listen to your needs and collaborate with you to create the perfect ring, and that the diamond or gemstone will be responsibly-sourced and conflict-free. The question, then, is: Should you buy an engagement ring online or in a store? Spoiler alert – you can do BOTH! Read on for insight into how the processes vary,  how to decide which is right for you, and tips to keep in mind.

Traditionally Tailor-Made: Shopping In-Store 

Rather than just window or display shopping, to really get the best ring selection, it’s always a great idea to make an appointment to meet with a diamond expert in-store. We’ll explore your vision, discuss what you’re looking for, then present you with a hand-chosen selection of diamonds curated by our gemologists to match your budget and style. And while we’re dedicated to offering the best of the best, we also take the time to walk you through the details and differences with magnification. Sharing our diamond knowledge is part of the process so that you are educated and empowered to make a confident decision. Plus, you’ll have the opportunity to ask all the questions you want—whether it’s how the 4Cs (cut, color, clarity and carat) work or what to look for beyond those stats. You can look as closely and carefully as you’d like at various setting-and-gem combinations. When you’re able to compare two similar gems up close, you can make a decision based not only on facts and prices, but also on that special “X” factor that you just feel

And, another great benefit of buying an engagement ring in store is that it’s a truly magical experience to share with your partner. Together you can explore your shared vision, discover the styles you both love, and then see your dream ring become a reality. There’s nothing quite like it. 

There’s Value in Virtual: Shopping Online 

Naturally, the beauty of a diamond ring is much more impactful in person than on a screen, but that doesn’t mean buying an engagement ring online is any less meaningful—and when you make a virtual appointment with Greenwich St. Jewelers, we ensure you get all the information and the clearest picture possible of all your options. In fact, it’s a pretty similar experience to in-store shopping, just brought into the digital realm. You’ll still get the chance to meet with a specialist, it just happens on a video call instead! They will still take the time to learn about what you’re looking for and provide expert guidance on the diamonds themselves—which is crucial when you’re shopping for such a special piece online. 

If you’re simply browsing an extensive website full of engagement ring offerings it’s understandable to wonder why some diamonds are priced a certain way. How accurately do the web photos reflect the real thing? What level of quality am I actually getting? That’s where our expertise comes in. During your virtual Greenwich St. Jewelers appointment, your personal gemologist guide you through the Create Your Ring customization process where you can add your own diamond and ring to cart in minutes; but they’ll also explain the differences between specific diamonds you’re interested in and help you determine which combination of the 4 Cs is best for you. Because you’re getting gemologist guidance , you’ll be presented with diamonds that not only meet, but exceed your expectations. For example, you can get a higher color or even a larger carat size by going with a lower clarity that’s still stunning to the naked eye. We’ll work with you to curate a selection, show you the differences, then you edit down to find your ideal match. 

We’re dedicated to every step of the process, all the way through from understanding your vision and helping you make informed selections to ensuring that the finished ring is everything you dreamed of. and more. With full transparency along the way, there’s no big “what I ordered vs. what I received'' reveal here. Our experts will review your diamond choice before the ring is made to ensure it’s right for the setting and make any necessary recommendations. We’ll also share photos and videos of the jewel before shipping it to you, so you can get a final look. 

The Big Question Before the Big Question: Should You Buy Online or In-Store? 

The decision comes down to your personal preferences. If reviewing options up-close and IRL is important to you—or you’re just tired of virtual meetings, make an appointment in-store. If you prefer the convenience of virtual, or it’s not possible for you to come into the store, a virtual appointment could be just the right fit. 

Of course, it is possible neither of these appeal to you. Perhaps you’re already explicitly familiar with diamonds, or you know exactly what you want and you’re ready to make it reality, or you’re on a tight timeline. In that case, you have the option of flying solo through our Create Your Ring online tool. Within minutes, you can choose from our responsibly-sourced G.St Ceremony engagement settings and curated selection of diamonds to build a ring that will be ready in just three-to-four weeks. 

Ultimately, as long as you’re working with dedicated diamond and engagement ring experts  like our team at Greenwich St. Jewelers, you can count on finding your perfect forever ring—and we really do mean forever. This feels like an afterthought?) Like any important purchase of value your engagement ring will need maintenance and care to keep it sparkling and secure. We recommend yearly checkups for the prongs and settings, polishing or refinishing of the metal and the kind of deep cleaning only our jewelers can do. This is all free of charge, covered under the Lifetime Engagement Ring Care you receive when you purchase your engagement ring at G.St.

The only remaining question: When does forever start? 


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