Are you trying to decide between Shane Co. and James Allen? Look no further, because this comprehensive Twirl Weddings guide has got you covered! You’ll discover:
- Which retailer provides the superior shopping experience?
- Which brand offers the more impressive warranty?
- What do customer reviews have to say about each business?
- Where can you find the greatest value for your money?
Both Shane Co. and James Allen sell ring settings and loose diamonds, there are a few notable differences in their overall shopping experiences.
James Allen is a major player in the diamond industry and is widely recognized online, along with the renowned Blue Nile. They frequently receive high ratings in our reviews.
Their online platform offers a relaxed and stress-free shopping experience from the comfort of your home. Save for the natural diamonds, they additionally offer fancy colored diamonds, lab-created diamonds and other popular colored gems.
James Allen boasts one of the largest inventories of loose diamonds online, providing customers with a vast selection you can choose from. Although you cannot physically see the diamond in person, their 360˚ viewer allows for a clear view and control of the diamond, enabling you to inspect for any noticeable inclusions and blemishes. In fact, we find that their online viewer is even better than looking at diamonds through a gem microscope in person.
Most of the diamonds are certified by either the IGI and GIA, with some from the AGS. However, we recommend purchasing only AGS and GIA certified diamonds.
James Allen has more than 600,000 loose diamonds available, they also offer roughly 250 different ring settings (depending on the diamond shape) to choose from.
If you are not satisfied with your wedding band or engagement ring from James Allen, you can take advantage of their 30-day return policy at no extra cost.
RECOMMENDED: James Allen Review
The Shane Company, a notable jeweler gaining recognition within the realm of engagements, has garnered considerable interest. It bears resemblance to renowned establishments such as Helzberg and Zales. Just like Helzberg, The Shane Company prides itself on being a family business, meticulously run by a dynamic duo: Tom Shane and his son Rordan Shane.
Shane Co. operates both in-store and online, with approximately 14 different physical locations. On their website, you can customize your own engagement ring by selecting loose diamonds, gemstones, ring settings, and even your budget. However, they do not offer lab diamonds.
Shane Co presents an impressive assortment of unmounted diamonds available through their online platform, encompassing a staggering collection exceeding 13,000 pieces. Comparable to James Allen, one can peruse and refine their diamond preferences using various grading and filtering options. The diamonds offered by Shane Co hold accreditation from esteemed institutions such as HRD, GIA, GSI, or undergo meticulous in-house grading. Opting for GIA-certified diamonds proves to be the sole prudent choice for discerning buyers.
One advantage of Shane Co.’s inventory is that they offer small carat weights, which is not the case with James Allen whose smallest carat weight is 1/2 carat. This makes it convenient for customers who are looking for melee stones or side diamonds.
To examine a selection of their diamonds, you have access to a comprehensive 360˚ viewer, yet unfortunately, there exists no functionality for organizing them, requiring manual scrolling. This viewer is not as user-friendly as James Allen’s controllable viewer. It can be difficult to operate and sometimes blurry.
Shane Co offers a 60-day return policy for their diamond engagement rings, which can be returned either online or in-store.
RECOMMENDED: James Allen vs. Rare Carat
One major reason for losing customers is poor customer service. The two companies have different approaches to customer service. We’ve done a comparison to determine which one is better. Let’s dive right in!
The customer care team at James Allen comprises both gemologists with GIA certifications and trained associates who are accessible 24/7 via live chat, email, or phone. Shopping on the site is hassle-free, and you can easily create a customized ring without assistance from an associate, unlike other online places that require follow-up with the store or a call to add a warranty.
However, if you need to consult with a diamond specialist regarding a particular diamond., you can click on the Real Time Inspection button on the page you’re viewing, and they will provide a detailed explanation of the diamond’s specifics.
The only thing you might need to do is seek additional information concerning viewing of the GIA report, which requires a call, but most customers don’t find it necessary. Nevertheless, Blue Nile enables you to view the report on their website.
The customer service provided by James Allen is unique because the team isn’t paid based on commission, and neither do they have sales goals to meet to earn a living. They won’t try to force credit applications on you like Kay and Jared Jewelers, so you can be confident that they’re providing impartial advice.
Shane Co. distinguishes itself from other brick and mortar retailers by offering its customers the convenience of looking up their repair jobs online, a feature that is sorely lacking in stores like Kay. This saves both the customers and the staff a lot of time and hassle.
Unlike Kay, Zales, and Jared, Shane Co. follows a non-commissioned payment structure for its associates. However, this doesn’t mean that the sales associates at Shane Co. aren’t driven just as hard to meet sales targets.
Irrespective of their commission structure, sales associates are often subjected to sales targets, which can drive them to aggressively pursue sales. This isn’t the case with James Allen employees, who don’t engage in such tactics.
Many people may believe that a warranty for their engagement or wedding rings is unnecessary, I strongly advise that you consider getting one. Engagement rings are typically crafted from natural metals that are not indestructible.
Gold is a common material used for crafting rings, but it is a soft metal that can be easily scratched, nicked, or even fade over time. This is completely unrelated to the skill of the craftsman who created the ring, but rather the natural wear and tear that occurs with daily use.
When you purchase most types of jewelry from James Allen, you can take advantage of their complimentary lifetime warranty. However, if you are only buying a loose stone or a wedding band made from materials such as tungsten that cannot be worked on by a jeweler, this warranty does not apply.
For the ring settings, including both designer and non-designer styles, as well as fine jewelry, the warranty covers routine maintenance. This includes services like retipping prongs, rhodium plating for white gold, and tightening stones. However, events such as prong rebuilding, reshaping the ring, or any damage to the jewelry will come at a cost.
No sign-up is required for this particular warranty, as it is automatically included with eligible purchases. Additionally, James Allen provides a free resizing within the first year. If resizing is not possible due to the ring type, customers can make use of the 30-day return policy at no extra cost or contact customer service for further assistance. However, please note that specific outcomes cannot be guaranteed.
If you need to have your jewelry serviced, you can bring it to a Jared the Galleria of Jewelry store to have it sent to any of their repair shops, or choose to send it to James Allen HQ directly. A shipping fee of $30 is charged for direct shipments, but return shipping is covered by James Allen. If you opt to have your jewelry serviced at Jared, you will not be charged a shipping fee.
Shane Co, like other major retailers, also offers a lifetime warranty for eligible purchases. However, they stand out by offering free replacement for the center stone and free metal work as part of their warranty.
This includes services like clasp repair, soldering bands, prong rebuilding, and rhodium plating. Unlimited sizing is also available, though it is recommended that rings are sized no more than one to two times, and by only one to two sizes down or up.
In comparison, stores such as Zales or Kay Jewelers offer diamond replacement for free but require payment for metal warranties to be covered for life.
Similar to other retailers, Shane Co. requires customers to have their rings inspected every six months at one of their stores to maintain their warranty. If this is not possible, customers can ship their ring to Shane Co via their website, but they must pay for shipping and insurance.
While the idea of having a diamond replaced for free may seem appealing, it’s important to note that each diamond is unique. If a diamond with visible inclusions is replaced, the new diamond may also have unsightly inclusions in different places.
Customers do not have the ability to choose their replacement diamond, and while it may have the same grade, the inclusions will be in different locations.
Additionally, rings made from alternative metals are not covered under this warranty, and extensive damage, such as being accidentally disposed of, is also not covered.
Price and Value
For many people, the cost of a ring is the primary consideration, often taking priority over added benefits and features. However, it’s important to note that a lower-priced diamond may not come with the same advantages as a slightly more expensive one, and you could end up saving money in the long run.
The value of the ring is what really matters, not just the price tag at the time of purchase.
Today, I have made the decision to acquire a 1.4-carat diamond of remarkable quality from the renowned James Allen’s online platform. This magnificent gem possesses an ideal cut, ensuring its brilliance, while maintaining a VS2 clarity and an H color grade, denoting its remarkable purity and captivating hue.
The impeccable craftsmanship is further exemplified by its flawless polish and symmetry, showcasing the meticulous attention to detail. It is noteworthy to mention that this exquisite diamond bears no fluorescence, preserving its natural radiance.
The price of this exceptional jewel amounts to $10,750, and it comes accompanied by an esteemed GIA certificate, affirming its authenticity and providing assurance of its unparalleled value. The cost of this diamond is $10,750.
AVAILABLE ON JAMESALLEN
I have found a diamond on Shane’s website with similar diamond grades, but it only has a Very Good polish. This round diamond also comes with a GIA certificate and has a price tag of approximately $11,925.
The aforementioned round diamond from Shane Company is priced about $1,000 higher compared to the same diamond from James Allen. The excellent polish of James Allen’s diamond may also result in a relatively better light performance.
In general, Shane Co offers better prices than Kay Jewelers, Zales, and Jared and customers tend to have a great experience shopping there. Often, uncertified diamonds at these other stores are priced thousands of dollars more than a GIA certified diamond from James Allen with better diamond grades.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that price isn’t always the sole determining factor for the best choice. The value of what you get, such as diamond upgrades, free appraisals, extra freebies, warranties, and discount events should also be taken into consideration. Ultimately, the best retailer for you will depend on your individual needs and preferences.
In today’s digital era, numerous platforms like the Better Business Bureau, Google Reviews, and Yelp are flooded with abundant customer feedback. However, it’s worth noting that the majority of individuals tend to focus on registering complaints against retailers. Although such reviews can offer some insights, it’s important to approach them with caution and skepticism.
Alternatively, we prefer to explore Reddit and its various specialized communities dedicated to discussions surrounding diamonds and engagement rings.
Blue Nile and James Allen are consistently popular topics across various subreddits related to diamonds, wedding proposals and engagement rings. Customers and company representatives alike participate in discussions, and James Allen even has an active associate under the Reddit name “Jamesallenrings” who offers advice and engages with customers without pressuring them to buy.
In addition to their website, James Allen also provides excellent customer service on other review sites.
Shane Company’s presence on Reddit came as a surprise to me. Prior to stumbling upon the memes, I wasn’t very familiar with the brand, but it seems that many Redditors are.
It appears that Shane Co has a consistent marketing team and their catchy jingle made them a well-known name in the industry. Although they were quite popular, their presence has dwindled in recent years.
Nowadays, you don’t quite see a lot of posts about them on Reddit and the majority of mentions are in the form of memes instead of actual purchase experiences.
That said, there are still some Redditors who have inquired about purchasing diamonds from a traditional retailer like Shane Co. versus an online retailer like James Allen.
We recommend James Allen if you want to buy affordable engagement rings.
Here’s the rationale:
- The transparency of James Allen’s diamond displays offers an unobstructed 360˚ perspective. Conversely, Shane Co incorporates this feature selectively, resulting in subpar clarity and technical issues, particularly when accessed through Google Chrome.
- James Allen’s staff members ensure a relaxed shopping environment, devoid of any coercive tactics. In contrast, Shane Co’s personnel are driven by sales targets, fostering a high-pressure atmosphere within their establishments.
- James Allen’s diamond pricing significantly undercuts that of Shane Co.
- James Allen’s online presence boasts a formidable reputation and extensive customer following. Countless anecdotes and appraisals abound across the digital realm, validating this assertion.
In general, the overall encounter you encounter at James Allen appears to be more convenient and preferable for individuals with limited financial resources.