This Month in Bespoke: Ritani02.24.2014
We had our reservations about the thought of purchasing an engagement ring online. For starters, you’re unable to see the actual diamond quality and cut in person, and with purchasing anything online, you never really know if what you ordered is what you’ll actually get. In fact, 90% of engagement ring shopping begins online, yet a disappointing 10% of the purchases in the multi-billion dollar industry are actually done online. Many times, the risks outweigh the rewards when it comes to online shopping, especially when it involves shelling out about three months of your hard-earned salary. However, our preconceived notions about perusing the cyber showrooms have taken a sudden turn.
The high-end jewelry brand Ritani has dramatically transformed the way in which we search, design, and purchase an engagement ring, allowing us the chance let our inner artist shine as we design the perfect ring at home. Ritani is backed by $15 million from Cantor Ventures and has a unique “clicks-and-bricks” business model, giving buyers the opportunity to head over to a trusted local jeweler for a free in-store preview, ultimately tying the knot between cyber and in-store shopping.
If the ability to see the actual diamond in person from a jeweler isn’t enough to gain our trust in the company, Ritani offers you an entire lesson on education and guidance for picking out the right diamonds, with pages on the website including “How to Buy an Engagement Ring,” “Platinum, Palladium & Gold,” “Ritani Diamonds and the Four C’s,” and “Science of Sparkle.” The site allows you to chat with trained gemologists to help further your education. These informative lessons are important for putting together your modern bespoke masterpiece. After all, if the ring isn’t perfect, can you really be sure she’ll say yes?
The process for designing and purchasing your engagement ring is simple, only involving three steps. First, choose your diamond, and select the setting in your preferred metal and size. Next, sit back and daydream about how the special day will unfold as Ritani artisans handcraft your ring in New York based on your choice of diamond, preferred settings, and specifications. Finally, preview your ring in person at a select jeweler. If you love it, take it with you. If it doesn’t match what you had long dreamed about, leave it there. The only commitment you’ll have when it comes to the Ritani ring is the one you make with your fiance once you place it on her finger.
What happens to those custom-made rings whose designers walk away from them with disappointment? These rings can be reduced to their parts and then reused because Ritani sources its own materials and manufactures its own jewelry. This reduces the financial burden of these one-of-a-kind rings easier than it would at an independent jewelry store. Giving its customers the ability to preview their ring in-store with no commitments has ultimately provided local business and mom-and-pop jewelers with unique benefits including an expanded customer base, exclusive technology, revenue share and more.
Ritani seeks to increase the percentage of online engagement ring shopping. With their unique “clicks-and-bricks” business model, customers are more inclined to purchase their diamonds from the site, as the company has proved to be just as trusting as if customers were to purchase their rings from an in-store, independent jeweler. Now sit back and relax, because all you’ll have to focus on is how you’ll pop the question.