Blue Nile is not a river in Eastern Africa, nor it’s some special blue-tinted diamond sourced from the Nile river. It’s actually the name of one of the most famous companies that sell fine jewelry.
From wedding and engagement rings to earrings, necklaces, and all that jazz, people can purchase all types of jewelry on Blue Nile’s official website.
If it’s your first time ordering jewelry online and the company caught your eye, we’re here to tell you all about it. We’ll go over the company’s history, products, pricing, return policy, and more. Let’s begin!
What Is Blue Nile?
Blue Nile is an online diamond retailer and jeweler that has been operating for over twenty years. While that’s not the oldest company in the business, they have earned the title of one of the top diamond retailers. They have become known for their fine-quality diamonds at friendly, lower prices.
Blue Nile was founded over twenty years ago, in 1999. It began as the brainchild of Doug Williams of Williams & Son Inc before being purchased by Bain & Company, growing from a small website that sold diamonds online to a multi-million dollar company.
They were first on the scene, long before companies like James Allen or With Clarity. All the while, their message, and motivation have stayed the same.
Blue Nile desires to offer high-quality, conflict-free diamonds at great prices. They have a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to ethically sourced gems, so you can have peace of mind when purchasing a diamond. Their commitment to conflict-free doesn’t mean there is a shortage of choices.
They set out to innovate the engagement ring business by offering a plethora of gorgeous choices. All their jewelry comes with the support of diamond and design experts, superb customer service, and all the information you could ever need to choose the perfect piece of jewelry!
Right from the get-go, Blue Nile appears welcoming, recognizable, and genuine. Their crisp, clean, and highly engaging website makes your shopping experience stress-free. They offer a selection of reviews online from satisfied customers that have left their feedback. But a quick Google search can also clue you in on their reputation.
They’re known and highly appreciated for their high-quality diamonds at excellent prices. You simply can’t beat the Blue Nile value. The only qualm is that they don’t sell loose lab-grown diamonds like some of their competitors do.
However, they’re a leader in the online diamond market with a fantastic reputation. At Blue Nile, you can rest assured that you’re purchasing an excellent and authentic diamond for a beyond-fair price, whether a $5000 diamond or a $50,000 diamond.
Their stellar reputation has allowed them to branch out and form partnerships. They have relationships with fantastic diamond wholesalers (some of the biggest in the world) and designers who craft unique jewelry settings. All these benefits are passed on to you, offering you a selection of breathtaking stones and alluring settings.
Blue Nile Business Model
Blue Nile was founded with the idea that the diamond business (mostly when it came to shopping for engagement rings) needed some innovation, hence the online buying experience.
They removed the middleman, if you will, and instead list diamonds at prices provided by the wholesalers or diamond manufacturers. Because they don’t purchase the stones and re-list them, it means they can offer a more comprehensive selection with virtually no markup (read, lower prices)!
When it comes to competitive prices without compromising selection, Blue Nile is where it’s at!
Blue Nile offers a wide range of products. The only drawback, in my opinion, is that they don’t have loose lab diamonds. However, they do have lab diamonds already set in lovely jewelry.
Just like a spectacular diamond, Blue Nile truly shines when it comes to engagement rings. To start, they offer both natural and lab-created diamonds. You can choose from a variety of cuts, carat sizes, colors, and clarity ratings.
They hold their diamonds to high standards, so you can be sure every gem you see on their website will have been thoroughly scrutinized to ensure it fits the Blue Nile criteria. Customers love that they don’t have to worry about being boxed into a certain look thanks to the vast collection of rings.
You can also shop for various settings and ring designs, from simple solitaires to jaw-dropping three-stone rings. They have metals of every color, whether you want a vintage rose gold or modern platinum.
Alternatively, Blue Nile lets you custom-design your engagement ring. Unlike James Allen, Blue Nile’s custom process must start with the diamond instead of the setting.
Which, when you think about it, is quite wise as the diamond is the most critical part of the ring. Then, you can work with design and diamond experts to create your one-of-a-kind piece!
Should you want something unique without having to use your design skills, choose from one of their lovely gemstone engagement rings, customers who want celebrity or royal-inspired rings will absolutely love!
Already purchased your engagement ring? Blue Nile can help you with the next step. They offer fantastic wedding bands for both men and women. You can browse the ever-classic metal wedding band for her or choose a diamond-studded one for more sparkle.
There is no shortage of intricate patterns or styles. Reviews mention that customers love that they offer fitted wedding bands that hug your engagement ring, such as this lovely crown wedding band.
For him, there are many different sizes and metals. He can also opt for a bit of elegance with a different finish or some unique engraving.
Though they specialize in engagement rings and wedding bands, Blue Nile isn’t just a store for couples. They have plenty of other jewelry for all occasions. Treat yourself to a pair of diamond stud earrings, or build your own.
Gift your mother a diamond bracelet or maybe a beautiful pendant. One reviewer said they offer perfect mother-of-the-bride jewelry, making them a one-stop shop for all of your wedding jewelry needs! There are more settings, gems, diamonds, and jewelry types than you can imagine.
We’ve talked a lot about Blue Nile’s diamond jewelry, which may have made you wonder about the quality of the diamonds used in all those lovely settings.
Well, you can rest easy. Blue Nile only sells reputable and certified diamonds. Customer reviews mention that they sought them out because they knew they wouldn’t be getting ripped off.
Remember, Blue Nile works with renowned wholesalers and traders and has a strict policy on conflict-free stones. Additionally, all of their loose diamonds are either IGS or GIA-certified.
When you purchase a stone from Blue Nile, you can be sure you’re getting exactly what you see on the page in terms of size, Clarity, color, carat weight, and authenticity. Their diamonds measure up with big names like Tiffany (not the prices, though, they’re much better at Blue Nile).
We also love that they make it easy to find just the stone you are looking for. They have so many options for all budgets. They have the Astor diamond if you want to splurge a little.
Exclusive to Blue Nile, these diamonds have been carefully selected for their unmatched cut quality. The cut makes their sparkle, brilliance, and fire out of this world. You can easily find these spectacular specimens within their Blue Nile collection.
Admittedly, these Astor ideals are more expensive, but they still have excellent prices compared to other brands.
Speaking of prices, let’s dive a little more into Blue Nile’s pricing. Blue Nile offers very competitive pricing? Why? How?
Because they don’t have the overhead common with other retailers. Due to their relationship with diamond wholesalers, they can procure extraordinary diamonds for relatively reasonable costs. Then, these stones go straight to the website with only razor-thin margins.
They don’t mark up their diamonds, which means more affordable prices for their (according to reviews, happier) customers. With this business model, other retailers like With Clarity and James Allen similarly pass the savings on to their customers.
However, they don’t offer designer-created settings or the Astor Ideal cut diamonds. So there are clear advantages to choosing Blue Nile as your online diamond source compared to others.
It’s not the most pleasant thing to think about, but sometimes life doesn’t go according to plan. What if the recipient of your jewelry purchase isn’t loving the design after they have already said yes? Don’t fret!
Blue Nile offers no questions asked returns within thirty days of the date your item was shipped. You read that right. No. Questions. Asked.
Your significant other changed their mind? The love of your life became the ex-love of your life? They don’t need to know your reasons; they’re just there to support you with hassle-free returns courtesy of a paid shipping label sent to you.
How Does Blue Nile Compare to Competitors?
We’ve referred to their competitors a few times, like With Clarity, James Allen, and Brilliant Earth. These other companies have also broken into the online jewelry business and specialize in diamond engagement rings.
However, Blue Nile is still considered the original. As such, they have a tried-and-true business model as well as a fantastic reputation.
We hope Blue Nile eventually opens up to selling loose, lab-created diamonds. However, we praise them for their pre-set offerings of lab-grown diamonds and commitment to conflict-free natural diamonds.
As far as prices go, Blue Nile is as competitive as you can get. Their selection is also vast, though a little smaller than James Allen’s. Their obsession with customer care shines, from their strict quality control to fantastic customer service.
Many of the other companies in the market are equally as well-rated. Still, they may have fewer stellar reviews due to their shorter history than Blue Nile. Plus, you can check out jewelry for yourself in Blue Nile’s showrooms.
As younger companies, brands like James Allen have fewer showrooms and With Clarity doesn’t have any.
In our opinion, Blue Nile offers unbeatable value for the price. They have a huge selection that offers nearly anything you could want, whether that be a natural diamond, a lab-grown diamond, or a gemstone.
We think there are a few areas of improvement, such as their expansion into loose lab stones and maybe a bit nicer packaging to match the high quality of their rings. However, these are minimal cons, compared to all the perks of their products, pricing, customer service, and more.
Overall, they are accomplishing what the company initially set out to do. Offer high-quality specimens at affordable prices through a convenient, customer-centric online system.
They have been in the online diamond game the longest compared to the competitors we mentioned, meaning they have had time to learn what works and doesn’t. It’s clear from their reputation that they’ve figured out how to improve the diamond shopping experience and customers are thankful for that!