2020 was a year of many things, and apparently, an increase in commitment was one of them. Lockdown wasn’t enough to stop the romantic gestures from piling in up and down the country. While weddings have been postponed for the foreseeable future, engagements have only increased in the past year.
During lockdown, 30% of people made life-changing decisions, and one of those was deciding to spend the rest of their life with someone. Many couples moved in together for the first time when lockdown first hit the UK. Their relationships became stronger and more romantic as they came up with inventive date nights and started new hobbies together. After an extended period of little to no celebration, an engagement is a perfect way to get excited about the future again.
Various jewellers across the country reported a considerable leap in sales following the first lockdown. One company reported a 40% increase in ring sales in 2020, compared to the previous year. Although wedding ring sales plummeted with the new rules, engagement ring sales made up for it.
Consumers have even started shopping for engagement rings online on their mobile phones. Google searches of engagement rings have rocketed by 22% this autumn, compared to 2019. With jewellers closed, online shopping is the only way to research and purchase an engagement ring in a pandemic. Jewellery brands are improving their websites to provide an innovate personal experience for their consumers.
Following the sales boom in autumn 2020, Christmas and New Year was a very popular time for proposals. After living together for nearly a year, many couples felt it was time to make a larger commitment to each other and began to ask the question – why wait? However, 2020 was expected to be a bumpier year for the jewellery business with the pandemic and economic crash. Fortunately, love always prevails.
Bespoke rings are on the rise as consumers want to support independent brands through this tumultuous time. People are also expecting their partners to spend less on their engagement ring. 50% of Brits expect their partner to spend nearly £500 less than the average cost of £1,483. Younger couples are likely to spend a little more on engagement rings compared to the older generations.
Coloured gemstone rings made a big comeback in 2020. However, the classic diamond ring is still the most popular choice as people yearn for the familiarity of tradition in an uncertain time. The classic diamond ring is a timeless engagement piece that is a universal symbol of eternity and romance. Consumers want a ring that will never go out of fashion and will withstand the test of time. That said, a little personalisation here and there is also a beautiful gesture.