National Jeweler Network

Online Retailing

New Blue Nile site focuses on the UAE

By Hannah Connorton

August 20, 2014

Seattle--In an ongoing attempt to grow outside of the U.S., Blue Nile has launched an Arabic language version of its website, allowing consumers in the United Arab Emirates to shop in their native language.

The addition marks the seventh language in which Blue Nile is available. In addition to English and now Arabic there are French, Spanish, Japanese and traditional and simplified Chinese versions of the site.

UAE consumers can conduct transactions on the Arabic-language site using the dirham (the basic monetary unit of the country) and reach Arabic-speaking diamond and jewelry consultants when they call the company.

“Blue Nile began serving the UAE in 2011 and has developed a loyal customer following resulting in one of the largest average order sizes we see in our international markets,” said Jon Sainsbury, international program manager at Blue Nile. “This enhancement will make the process of finding the perfect engagement ring or fine jewelry gift even easier for our customers in the region.”

This move is one in a series Blue Nile has taken to diversify beyond being an online-only seller of engagement rings in the United States, its core business.

The e-tailer has introduced a brick-and-mortar experience, installing showcases at Nordstrom stores in Seattle and Garden City, N.Y. While the jewelry displayed can’t be purchased at the store, the cases were installed to increase brand awareness among consumers. 

Blue Nile also is tapping into international markets for growth, marked most recently by this new Arabic version of its website. 

Sales in overseas countries have been increasing for the e-tailer: international net sales for the second quarter ended June 29 were up 4 percent and have risen nearly 5 percent year-to-date from $17.1 million in 2013 to $18 million.   

This is compared with a 5 percent decrease in U.S. engagement ring sales for the quarter, which dropped to $61 million compared with $64 million in the second quarter 2013, impacted adversely by higher diamond prices.