It used to be that if you knew how to grade a diamond, then you could tell your customer the weight and quality of the diamonds you have in stock. You were relatively confident that your customer would appreciate your professionalism. But not any more. Today’s diamond-buying customer has already been shopping on the Internet, gleaning any information about diamond quality they can find. They are coming to your store already knowing about diamond grading reports. And they are going to ask for one; they’ll want a third-party confirmation—whether it’s a diamond grading report or certificate—from an established laboratory, with information about the quality of the diamond you’re trying to sell them. And you’ll want a lab report—a diamond cert—too. Here’s why.
Your customer needs confirmation from a disinterested third party in order to trust you. So why not oblige? Instead of using your expertise to present the quality, use your knowledge of diamond grading to help your client navigate the laboratory report. You can build the cost of that lab report into the cost of owning the diamond. Both you and your customer will be happy.
But it’s not just the consumer who wants a laboratory diamond grading report. You, too, want third-party confirmation from a professional laboratory to make absolutely certain of the diamond’s origin (whether it’s natural or synthetic) as well as for the clarity and color grade. The current sophisticated lab-grown processes, as well as color and clarity enhancements, may be just too difficult for many retail jewelers to identify. Let the labs help you in that department.
You and your client will also appreciate a laboratory report that’s offering a cut grade. Analysis of cut, the diamond’s proportions and light performance, using non-contact measuring devices like the Sarin and formulas developed by the American Gem Society and Gemological Institute of America, has really taken off since GIA began issuing cut grades in January 2006. (AGS was first, offering cut grades back in 1966.) Demand for the ideal-cut diamond has never been higher.
Fancy colored diamonds also have been climbing in popularity—and price/value—for the past decade, and there seems to be no end in sight. These diamonds are difficult to identify and color grade and had better come to you with a current laboratory report. The use of high-tech sophisticated gemstone detection equipment used to identify color enhancement is an absolute must. There are new color grades to consider, as the grading scale has actually expanded from Fancy and Fancy Intense to Fancy, Fancy Intense, Fancy Vivid, Fancy Deep, and Fancy Dark. These changes and challenges are more than enough reason to insist on a recent (dated within the past year) diamond report.
Click here for a chart detailing what services are offered by the major U.S. professional diamond grading labs.