Zales Jewelers – A Review
Our Rating 2.9 out of 5.
Compare Zales Diamond Jewelry with James Allen.
Zales is a very well-known jewelry chain store brand, with Zales Corporation owning a few other jewelry chain brands as well. Being so prominent in the USA with over 700 stores across 50 states, one would think that Zales would be a good choice to purchase a diamond engagement ring.
However, this is not close to the truth at all. Zales does nothing to grant them the status of a great quality jewelry store and should be avoided for purchasing diamond engagement rings and the like.
Your money will be better spent at James Allen, and you will receive a ring in return that will far exceed your expectations, whereas a ring from Zales will leave you wanting.
A Brief History
Founded in 1924 by brothers Morris and William Zales, Zales came to life in Wichita Falls, Texas. Originally, the store sold cookware, cameras, small appliances, and jewelry, but underwent an expansion in the 1930s, where 12 new stores were opened. During the 1950s, Zales moved into indoor shopping stores, offering customers an extremely convenient way to shop for jewelry and engagement rings.
Zales is known for making jewelry affordable for the working family, instituting a credit plan where customers can put a down payment forward to pay jewelry off.
Through their history in the jewelry industry in the USA, Zales was a brand name synonymous with affordability for the working class.
What Zales Jewelers Offer
There really is not much that Zales offers that you cannot find better from an online jewelry store, such as the likes of James Allen or Blue Nile.
While Zales is known to provide jewelry for the working-class family, they have fallen out of fashion with this, offering low-quality diamonds and engagement rings for a price tag that cannot compete with what is offered online.
On top of the 700 Zales stores found across the USA, there is also 130 Zales Outlet store in the States as well. This offers accessibility that many other stores cannot give, being widely available almost everywhere in the country, as well as having 190 stores under a different name in Canada.
Zales specialty is diamond jewelry, with a fairly wide variety of engagement rings to be found both in-store and online. These engagement rings come in different diamond shapes, cuts, and styles but are more expensive than what they are worth, which is often an issue with brick and mortar jewelry stores.
What Makes Zales Jewelers Stand Out?
Wide inventory – With so many stores across the country, as well as an online store, there is a wide variety of engagement rings to choose from at Zales. There might not be as many individual styles to choose from, but there is more than enough for most people to find what they are looking for.
Accessibility – Most people in the USA will not have to travel far to find a Zales Jewelers store, with over 700 shops countrywide. This does offer a bit of security when it comes to viewing an engagement ring first hand, as well as if there are any returns or any maintenance to be done.
Create your own – Zales Jewelers offer something that many brick and mortar chain stores do not – customized jewelry. You can choose a diamond by cut, color, carat or clarity, and then pair it up with an engagement ring setting. This offers some freedom if you do not find a ready-made ring that you are madly in love with.
Wedding bands – One upside to Zales is that they offer a fairly good selection of wedding bands to match the engagement rings sold. These are not as overpriced as the engagement rings, but still, hold a higher price tag than some other online jewelry stores.
Zales Jewelers Pricing
Being a brick and mortar jewelry store, Zales needs to own their inventory, and with this is a high cost. This cost, as well as other overheads that go into running chain stores, push the prices of the jewelry and engagement rings up.
One would be happy to pay a higher price for an engagement ring for the convenience of walking into a store, and if the ring is of good quality, but this is where the problem comes in. The quality of the diamonds and engagement rings sold by Zales are often not matched to the great quality sold at James Allen or Blue Nile, and the extra money you spend is pretty much wasted.
Zales does offer some creativity when it comes to creating your own engagement ring. You can access their design suite online, choose between a Vera Wang Custom, start with a setting or start with a loose diamond.
It is fairly easy to follow each step offered, with the design suite featuring a great choice layout of diamonds, settings, ring heads, metals and everything else that goes into creating your own ring, as well as a personalized engraving option as well.
Website Ease of Use
The Zales website is what you would expect of a chain jewelry store site. It is clean, with some pretty color and sale tabs everywhere. You have to sift through a few tabs to eventually get to the engagement ring page, allowing you to filter styles and shapes as you go.
Once you have clicked on an engagement ring that you are interested, you are greeted with a pretty clear picture of the ring and diamond, as well as quite a bit of useful information you could need before making a purchase. There are no 360-degree videos of the rings, which many online stores do offer.
The purchasing part of the site is easy, and there is a handy customer service button to click that opens up to a chat if you need any help.
You will experience a different level of customer service whether you shop in-store or online with Zales. However, their returns and warranties are fairly standard between each.
Full time Customer Support – There is a full time customer support option online, where you can easily click to open up a chat if you have any questions or queries. Obviously, this is not the case in-store as the store will have a closing time.
Return Policy – Jewelry can be returned within 60 days of the purchase date, in good condition with original certificates. Cash refunds are offered to customers with the original receipt, or a gift card can be issued for the same value.
In-Store Services – Zales offers many in-store services, one being a Diamond Breakage Coverage. If your diamond chips, breaks or is lost from the original setting, Zales will replace it with one of similar value at no charge. Zales also offer a lifetime cleaning and inspection service to keep your diamond ring in the best shape possible.
Zales Jewelers Financing Options
Zales offers a Diamond Credit Card, which gives customers exclusive coupons, jewelry inspection and cleaning reminders, and a chance to pay off their purchase. The financing options range between 6 to 36 months and require zero down payments.
Why You Should Choose Zales Jewelers
- Fairly large inventory of diamonds and engagement rings
- 700 store locations in the USA
- Financing option through store credit card
Zales – Save Your Money and Time
It is clear that the recommendation is to rather spend your budget online, where you will receive a high-quality ring with proper certification from James Allen or Blue Nile, instead of overpaying on a likely to be a poor quality ring that will not hold its value overtime.
Zales Jewelers might have many locations across the USA, but this does not mean you should spend your money in one. Online wins hands-down here, and you and your wallet will thank yourself for taking your business elsewhere.