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(16 February 2012) Jewellery is consistently one of the top sellers on South African online marketplace, bidorbuy.co.za. In an average week, over 1600 pieces of jewellery are sold on the site. That means that a piece of jewellery sells every six minutes.
“Jewellery is among the best performing categories on bidorbuy and is a big revenue generator for our sellers”, says Natalie Reffo, bidorbuy Category Manager. “This family of products has certainly found favour with online shoppers”.
People are buying necklaces, pendants, earrings, bracelets and antique jewellery. Over the past year, there was a 150% increase in sales of antique jewellery, indicating that that people want to adorn themselves with more unique and vintage pieces of jewellery.
When it comes to earrings, the classic pair of diamond earrings is the biggest seller.
Not surprisingly, men’s jewellery is less than 2% of all jewellery sold on the site. Last year, chains and necklaces were favourites in this niche, while titanium rings have grown in popularity over the past year.
Overall, the title of the absolute best seller among the shiny objects goes to rings, which account for almost 40 percent of all jewellery sales on bidorbuy. Gold is by far the most popular metal of choice, and white gold seems to be the favourite for engagement rings.
More than half of rings sold in the month of January 2012 were engagement and wedding rings. That may indicate that more people are popping the question this year, or perhaps that shoppers are becoming more comfortable purchasing such significant items without touching and feeling the product beforehand.
“Buying engagement rings can be a tough job, especially for men”, says Natalie Reffo. “Many find it difficult to visit various shops in search for the perfect ring for the fiancée, and when they do enter a shop they often feel lost. Thanks to the convenience, wide selection, as well as the ease of comparing prices, many of them are turning online”.
The site presently houses about 50,000 pieces of jewellery; more than 10,000 of them are rings.
“The advantage of bidorbuy is that it is an online marketplace where numerous sellers offer their wares directly to the public”, says Natalie Reffo.
She explains that sellers on bidorbuy bypass many of the middlemen, so numerous in the retail jewellery trade channels, which means that they are able to sell their goods at a lower price: “It is normal for buyers to expect substantial discounts when buying engagement rings and other jewellery on bidorbuy. However, buyers should also be wary if something looks too good to be true”.
Buyers are advised to read the item description carefully, especially the information pertaining to the gemstone: the type, the weight, the quality.
“While gold has standardised pricing, gemstones are much more difficult to evaluate. That is the main reason why rings and other pieces of jewellery are usually sold on bidorbuy in the auction format, instead of at a fixed price”, says Natalie Reffo and adds:
“It is certainly a good idea to do some research before placing a bid or making an order, as well as to stick with reputable sellers when shopping for expensive items like diamond engagement and wedding rings”.