Ethical Jewellery Digital Marketing Strategies for 2019

How much do people spend on an engagement ring? Apparently, it all depends on where they live. According to De Beers, back in the 1930s, following the recession, it was meant to be a month’s salary. That became two months and for Japanese consumers, three.

And an engagement ring means a diamond ring. “A Diamond is Forever” was written in 1947 by Frances Gerety and it stuck. At the time De Beers controlled around 60% of the worlds diamonds so you can see their thinking. When George Clooney proposed to Amal Alamuddin the ring was rumoured to have set him back £450,000. That’s a good month’s salary. That said, she is reported to have sought out a plain platinum band for when she is doing her human rights work.

KeywordAvg Monthly SearchesPage One CompetitionSuggested Pay Per ClickEst Monthly TrafficEst PPC Budget
engagement rings246,000High£5.3549200£263,220
diamond rings40,500High£3.918100£31,671
diamond engagement rings12,100High£6.422420£15,536
ethical engagement rings590High£7.13118£841
handmade engagement rings390High£3.6778£286
fairtrade gold320High£8.3764£536
ethical diamonds260Medium£3.8352£199
conflict free diamonds140Medium£7.0028£196
ethically sourced diamonds90Medium£1.7818£32
synthetic diamond engagement rings70High£6.4614£90
ethical diamond rings70High£6.1014£85
lab diamond engagement rings50High£6.8110£68
eco friendly engagement rings40High£4.108£33
lab grown diamond engagement rings40High£4.508£36
ethically sourced engagement rings40High£5.208£42
fair trade engagement rings40High£6.908£55
fair trade gold jewelry30High£5.966£36
ethical wedding bands20High£6.594£26
ethical diamond engagement rings20High£7.584£30
conflict free diamond engagement rings10Low£5.042£10

UK Search traffic (Population = 66 million)

KeywordAvg Monthly SearchesPage One CompetitionSuggested Pay Per ClickEst Monthly TrafficEst PPC Budget
engagement rings823,000High£4.95164,600£814,770
diamond rings110,000High£3.4022,000£74,800
diamond engagement rings40,500High£6.248,100£50,544
ethical engagement rings1,900High£2.94380£1,117
ethical diamonds880High£5.41176£952
handmade engagement rings880High£4.09176£720
lab grown diamond engagement rings880High£5.67176£998
lab diamond engagement rings720High£5.25144£756
synthetic diamond engagement rings720High£5.56144£801
ethically sourced diamonds590High£2.71118£320
eco friendly engagement rings480High£3.1796£304
lab created sapphire engagement rings390High£3.6278£282
ethically sourced engagement rings390High£3.6378£283
ethical diamond rings320High£3.4964£223

USA Search Traffic

(Population = 327 million)

In any event, engagement rings are clearly an important purchase for a lot of people. When it comes to search 246.000 consumers in the UK and 823,000 in the USA are hammering those two words into Google. That’s early stage research. The purchase itself would be a lot more considered. We thought it would be interesting to look at strategies for companies who are concerned about their origins of their diamonds and gold.

Interestingly, getting on for three times as many people are searching for ethical engagement rings as for wedding bands. Do people become less ethical as the big day approaches or do a lot more people get engaged than married? Other interesting things to note include the difference in Fair Trade Gold searched. It was known as TransFair USA until 2010 and obviously isn’t as well established as in the UK where it was set up in 1992. Also, there is a greater curiosity about lab grown diamonds in the USA.

Woman drinking from a mug
Photo credit: Jose Martinez

The very act of adding the word ‘ethical’ immediately helps target your potential customer. ‘Fair Trade’ has the greater impact in the uK. Search volume decreases but the buying intent increases. ‘Hand Made’ is another modifier which may be of interest. There is no guarantee that a ring that is hand made is ethical but add both terms to your meta data and you will attract a certain type of buyer.

Perhaps it may be sensible to understand what we are talking about here. When it comes to diamonds, the major concern is to avoid conflict or ‘blood’ diamonds which were largely associated with Sierra Leone. The Kimberley Process, named after a town in South Africa, where it was signed, agreed that diamonds should all be fully traceable. Unfortunately, the process is largely paper based and open to fraud. It also doesn’t apply to countries which don’t sign up to it There is also concern about what it does and doesn’t cover. For example, child labour with an estimated 1 million children working in small scale mining according to Human Rights Watch.

De Beers are one of a number of companies who have started to use a Blockchain solution which means the diamond can be traced from mine to ring. Another alternative is lab grown diamonds. There are questions about the romance of a stone which is produced in a laboratory rather than from exhumed from the earth. And, if diamonds all come from labs what does that mean for the workforce of the developing countries? According to the National Association of Jewellers, The diamond industry alone employs 10 million people globally and income from gold and diamonds makes a real difference to the developing world by providing jobs, roads, healthcare and education. Diamond production is, ethically, a mine field.

The other main material is gold and that also has issues about its production. The majority in the UK is recycled through scrappage. In fact, according to the National Association of Jewellers, recycled gold accounts for 80% of gold content. What’s left can involvs a lot of poor behaviours towards people and their environment. For example, see Earthworks and their No Dirty Gold campaign.

SEO and Meta Data

So ethically produced diamonds and Fair Trade Gold are both real requirements for a proportion of those about to spend on engagement rings. What does this mean for SEO? Getting those words into the meta data for your category and product pages can have a major impact.

We had a look at the meta data of the website of Melissa Joy Manning, a company recommended by Vogue. We just went to Google and typed in ‘Site:’ followed by everything that would normally follow the ‘www.’.

Meta description
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As you can see, the meta data snippets are just plain descriptions. The engagement ring page is ‘engagement rings – Melissa Joy Manning Jewellery’. Adding the words ‘ethical’ and/or ‘conflict free’ to the start of the sentence would mean appearing for people who had already decided that is what they want. It is just one example of how companies who are producing ethical jewellery need to tell the world.

When it comes to PR there are plentiful opportunities. A very quick search revealed The Independent guide to its 9 best ethical and sustainable jewellery brands and Vouge lists its 6 Ethical Jewellery Brands to Buy Now. Marie Claire is even blunter with its ‘The ethical jewellery brands you need to invest in ASAP’.

Search results
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Google Ads

With Google Ads, including Google Shopping Ads, there is clearly a major opportunity here. That said, it is important to keep up with the negative keywords in your account. If you go to Google Analytics>Acquisition> Google Ads> Search Queries you will be able to see the terms people actually typed in when they were served your ads along with the revenue they generated. It is possible to download that table into Excel, which makes it a lot easier to work with. Once downloaded you can sort it by revenue and see all the ads which are costing you more than they are making. We recommend a good starting strategy of putting 80% of your budget into ads which can be shown to have made you money and using the other 20% to experiment. But that said, you can probably decide right now if you want to spend money on terms like ‘Walmart’ or ‘ASDA’ Engagement Rings.

Paid Social Advertising

Social Advertising can also be very effective, but you do need to be focused. We talk to companies who tell us that they spend a lot of time on Instagram and Facebook to increase brand awareness but rarely have any way of measuring it. We recommend focusing on sales. And that means using paid social.

For both platforms it is possible to use look-a-like audiences. First you need your audience, which if you have plentiful fully GDPR compliant emails then that won’t be a problem. If not, you need to organise a competition or show a video which will help you build the list. Once you have your core list, and have advertised to them, we recommend increasing your audience by no more than 1-2% at a time so that you can keep control of what is and isn’t working. It makes sense that people who choose natural, ethically produced jewellery will have friends with similar interests.

So those are our top recommendations for digital marketing strategies for selling ethically produced jewellery, especially diamond engagement rings. A while ago a diamond was rumoured to be forever but it’s worth remembering that some people like to have a few. Victoria Beckham, for example, is rumoured to own 13, one of them worth over a million pounds. Now there’s a customer worth keeping.

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