Welcome to Silver.com! Please be patient with us as we build our brand new silver retail site and precious metals resource over the coming months. In the meantime, we have some information about our website plans and the silver market below.
Over the next few months we will be developing our physical gold and silver retail website, as well as an all-encompassing guide to the physical silver markets. The retail portion of our site has a targeted launch date of June 1st, 2013, but in the meantime we will be adding content covering silver investments, product selection, and more.
Check back often to read our latest market updates and purchasing advice.
Buy Silver Now
If you arrived at our website ready to make a physical silver purchase, please head over to our sister website, www.JMBullion.com. JM Bullion, Inc. is the parent company of both websites, so you will receive the same great service, pricing, and product selection that we plan to offer here at Silver.com.
Physical Silver Products
When you are shopping for silver, either at JMBullion.com now or Silver.com in the future, you will have a vast variety of physical silver and gold products to choose from. To new investors, this can be a bit overwhelming, as there are so many forms of bullion, brands, and sizes. We will go over a few of these decisions now:
Forms of Bullion
When silver investors reference “bullion” they typically are referring to silver bars, coins, or rounds which are primarily valued for their silver content, not any sort of collectible value. Bullion is most often .999 fine minimum purity, meaning that the piece as a whole is comprised of at least 99.9% silver.
- Silver bars are typically rectangular-shaped, and are produced by private as well as government mints
- Silver coins are disk-shaped pieces, and are classified as “coins” because they are produced by a government mint and usually have a face value
- Silver rounds are also disk-shaped piece, but are produced by private mints, and thus have no face value
When buying bullion, we typically recommend you focus on silver bars and rounds, as they tend to be a touch cheaper than official government silver coins (despite containing the same amount of silver).
Brands of Silver
Beyond the various forms of bullion, another difference between products is simply the mint that produced them. There are hundreds, likely thousands, of different private producers of silver bars and rounds, as well as all of the government mints who make coins as well as bars.
Although nearly every producer makes the same exact products in regards to weight and purity, certain brands and editions command far higher premiums than generic silver products. For example, Engelhard silver bars often sell at a significant premium (3-15%) to generic silver pieces, as investors trust and prefer the Engelhard brand.
In our opinion, silver is silver, so you are best off buying generic pieces that save you money relative to spot price instead of expensive brands that command higher premiums.
Sizes of Silver Bullion
Although there are a nearly unlimited variety of sizes of silver pieces out there, most boil down to a few common industry weights:
- 1 troy oz bars, coins, and rounds
- 5 troy oz bars, coins, and rounds
- 10 troy oz bars
- 100 troy oz bars
We always recommend sticking to the weights/sizes described above, as they are the most liquid by far over odd-sized bars like 1kg silver bars or 50 oz pieces. When you go to sell your silver bullion down the line, the common weights above will be easiest to move and have the most demand.
Buying Silver Online
Over the past decade, the precious metals industry has gradually shifted from local bar and coin shops to Internet retailers of bullion. Although most industries trended towards the Internet long ago, gold and silver buyers took longer to transition due to the industry’s unique trust and reputation considerations.
Buying silver online is a bit different than buying other retail products online, so we will describe the process below:
Choosing Your Silver Products
The first step is to choose your products. When you browse JMBullion.com now, or Silver.com in the future, you can select between dozens of different gold, silver, and platinum products. Product choices are entirely up to you, but once you find what you are looking for, simply add that product to your Cart to continue.
Choose Your Payment Method
Once you enter the Cart, you’ll see your products, quantities, live prices, and shipping charges. From there you will need to select your payment method for paying the order total. JM Bullion and Silver.com offer credit / debit card, paper check, or bank wire payment methods. Each offers various advantages and disadvantages:
- Credit / Debit Cards offer a fast and convenient transaction, but you will be required to pay a % markup to cover the credit and debit card fees. The margins on precious metals are extremely tight, so online retailers are required to pass the card processing fees on to the customer. Typical rates are around 4%.
- Paper Checks save you the 4% surcharge over credit / debit cards, however they require you to actually mail a paper check to the seller, as well as wait for the check to arrive and clear from your bank account to the seller’s.
- Bank Wires also save you the 4% surcharge over credit / debit cards, but do not have any clearing periods or delays. Wires typically arrive within an hour or so, and allow the seller to ship your precious metals immediately. The only downside is that most banks require you to send wires in person, and also charge a $20-$30 fee for outgoing domestic wires.
After you have selected your payment method, you can proceed to Checkout.
At Checkout you will enter standard information like your first / last name, phone number, address, email, and password. You also will have to enter a credit / debit card, even if you are paying by paper check or bank wire. This is to lock in your price, and your card will be billed cancelation fees and Market Losses should you choose to cancel your check or wire order after locking in.
Once you complete the checkout form and submit your order, the purchase is finalized and your prices are locked in. You remit payment and await shipment.
Shipment of Your Silver
The final step of your order is receiving the physical shipment. JM Bullion and Silver.com use USPS and UPS to ship, insure, and delivery precious metals securely and discretely. All packages are sent with tracking, and anything over $300 requires a signature upon delivery. You are able to track your package as it heads your way, so you can be home to sign when it arrives.
That’s all for now – make sure to check back soon as we will be adding more content shortly, or visit JMBullion.com for immediate purchasing.