The Pros And Cons Of Purchasing Furniture Online
Through the years, the way people buy furniture has changed significantly. With the onset of commercialization, the concept of affordable furniture grew popular. Soon rentable furniture came into existence, which appealed to low-income families with small apartments.
Today, affordability is still an issue due to lower disposable income and higher levels of debt. However, with the availability of multiple online options, the price of furniture online is much lower than at your local store. Making online stores a better choice for furniture shopping from the perspective of cost. At the same time, online retail has downsides which can lead to a waste of money.
This contradiction has confused many about which is the better source for new home furnishings. To help you settle this dilemma once and for all, we have listed the pros and cons of purchasing furniture online, and when it is the best option.
Pros of purchasing furniture online
1. Large collections. Online stores can show you a wide range of furniture, including products you never considered, but may look stunning in your home. At a store, your choices may be limited to the stock available.
2. Easy comparisons. With everything available on one screen, you can compare product features and prices easily.
3. Deals and discounts. Brands can afford to slash their prices online because they do not need to pay rent for online stores. Also, bulk sales to many customers, which makes lower prices easy for them to offer.
4. Easy returns. Don’t like the way your new couch looks in your living room? No problem, just return it because most online stores have a return policy, which is a significant advantage!
Cons of purchasing furniture online
1. Misleading pictures. You don’t always get what you’re you see online. Colors of the actual product may vary from their photographs online, the touch and feel may differ from what you expected, and the product's sizes may vary.
2. Delivery charges. Some brands may require your purchases to exceed a certain amount for free shipping. In case the product is delivered from another country, shipping prices are expensive.
3. Return costs. Sometimes, you may need to bear the cost of shipping when you return a product to the seller. Before that, you may also need to go through a trying process to justify your return.
4. Lack of personal services. If you have questions or preferences, it’s difficult to communicate them to the furniture supplier online due to the lack of personal services. Moreover, this prevents you from trusting the brand that you must pay before receiving the product.
How to choose between offline and online furniture stores?
While online retail has its goods and bads, we believe if you pay close attention to the details, you can benefit from your online furniture shopping experience. To decide if the product matches your quality expectations, always check the reviews linked to it. Also, check the product’s description, to see how it is made and how it is to be maintained over time. If you do not find any relevant information that points to the quality of the product, consider another online brand, online store, or take the offline route.
To avoid hidden costs, high prices, or product disappearances, see if the manufacturing brand is an offshore company. Next, look at the shipping charges and return shipping charges (in case the product arrives damaged or different). Also, look at the estimated delivery time and route.
Make sure to scrutinize the return policy to know under what circumstances you can return the product delivered to you. Also, will the supplier come to collect the product or do you need to handle the return shipping yourself?
Finally, if the help section of the online store doesn’t specify the details you need, see if you can find a way to communicate with the supplier (through chat, phone calls, emails, or messages). You can also look for a customer service section to understand the products and the policies better. If you cannot reach out to them, try a different provider, or head over to an offline store.
We hope these tips have cleared your doubts about purchasing furniture online and will help you decide if the offline or online approach is most suitable for you. If you’re looking for a third option to brand new furnishing, we suggest you get your old furniture reupholstered at ViVi Upholstery, as it’s cheaper, faster, and smarter.
At ViVi Upholstery, we have over forty years of experience in furniture manufacturing, and we deliver the quality you can trust through top-notch residential and hospitality upholstery services. Each of our services is tailored to meet your specific needs by our talented artisans who understand your vision to provide you with the best options to fit your budget. We are known for our top custom upholstery services in North York, ON, so you can count on us because our quality speaks for itself!