With the rise of the Internet, and watch manufacturers learning about the value of good marketing, there is no shortage of watch information. When considering a new or used Rolex watch, doing homework is crucial because, unfortunately, there are many unscrupulous sellers on both the Internet and brick-and-mortar storefronts that sell Rolex.
If you are in the market for a new Rolex wristwatch, the best place is always a Rolex Authorized Dealer. Just with its watches, Rolex holds high standards for retailers carrying Rolex. Rolex dealers must carry a certain level of inventory, must meet sales quotas, maintain a well manicured store front, and can only sell watches at Rolex’s set price list. With the Rolex Authorized Dealer, there is very little room for haggling. Unlike car dealers, Rolex dealers must sell at list price. The better Rolex Authorized Dealers have Rolex trained watchmakers on staff who can repair and adjust your watch utilizing Rolex authentic parts. Keeping a Rolex watchmaker on staff requires hiring a Rolex certified watchmaker and keeping Rolex required parts and tools on premises. Having a Rolex watchmaker on staff is an expensive affair, but is indicative of the fiscal health and reputation of the dealer.
Unfortunately, the Rolex Authorized Dealer might not have the Rolex model that speaks to you and Rolex’s supply to dealers is inconsistent. What Rolex Dealers can obtain is entirely on the whim of Rolex the supplier. Additionally, because of the nature of the watch/jewelry retail industry, having a well trained and knowledgeable Rolex sales person is rare in an Authorized Dealer. This is where gray market dealers come into play. Because Rolex has high sales quotas for its Authorized Dealers, some dealers sell Rolexes into the gray market at reduced prices. Purchasing through a gray dealer has its advantages in that many times they have the Rolex you want, are knowledgeable about the product, and sell at a reduced price complete with original box and papers. Unfortunately, there may be warranty issues with a gray dealer, and more importantly, there is no way to verify that the watch is authentic.
There are many reputable watch dealers, both on the Internet and in storefronts who sell pre-owned Rolex watches and gray market Rolex watches. Like researching the watch itself, research the seller. There is no problem calling the seller and interviewing them on the purchase process and return/exchange policy, as well as their process for guaranteeing the watch’s authenticity. Many believe that when purchasing a watch, “buy the seller, not the watch.” Research the seller through watch forums, word of mouth, and with the Better Business Bureau. Even though many watch retailers try to sell watches by “selling emotion,” but a good watch dealer will allow you to think through a purchase, and have a liberal return / exchange policy, and will educate you along the way. If your research, intuition, positive interactions from the seller, and recommendations don’t add up, look elsewhere such as here at Beckertime.