When you don’t have time to go to a brick-and-mortar shop to furnish your new home, you can certainly buy furniture on the Internet. From beds to dressers to sofas for sale online, there are plenty of options to decorate your space without having to leave the house. Of course, as with every transaction conducted on the Web, you have to be extra vigilant about doing business with online sellers. Here are some tips that can help you make your furniture shopping experience seamless:
1. Use your tape measure
Because you won’t be physically there to view the item, your tape measure or any measuring tool is your best friend. When buying big ticket items such as closets, beds, or sofas, you have to be sure that it will fill into your space and blend in well with the rest of your interiors. Before going click-happy, measure all sides of your area, paying extra attention to how much floor space and vertical space the furniture will occupy. Don’t make the mistake of assuming that just because it fits your floor, it will also slot in well with your ceiling height.
2. Take note of assembly and shipping costs
Large-sized furniture that is bought online is shipped in parts and the buyer will be given instructions on how to assemble it. But you can also have it assembled on site upon delivery for an additional fee (sometimes for free, depending on the provider). Check if the seller offers these services and if it’s more efficient to have it assembled, or if it’s more practical to do it yourself. Shipping costs also matter; the bigger the item and the farther the warehouse, the higher the cost of shipping.
3. Review the store’s return and replacement policy
Does the store have a replacement or return policy? You should look for this information on the website to protect yourself in case the item you received is not delivered as expected. Also, find out if the seller will shoulder the shipping cost if the item is to be returned, or if they will split the bill with you.
4. Pay attention to customer reviews
Customer reviews are your main gauge whether or not you should buy from an online furniture store or seller. Don’t just rely on testimonials on the website, as these will most likely be all positive. Check out community forums, social media posts, and other comments elsewhere before making a decision. If you have family members or friends who have purchased items from the store before, ask for their feedback as well.
5. Don’t hesitate to ask questions
Because you won’t be seeing and touching the item until it is delivered to you, you can ask the seller all the questions you want before clicking that Buy button. Remember that you’ll be sending them your hard-earned money based on impressions and good faith, so you should be able to ask as many queries as you want. If the seller refused to communicate, that should be considered a red flag.
Although you will be buying online, it’s still recommended that you transact with a company that has a brick-and-mortar shop, in case you want to actually view the item before it’s shipped to you or you need anything repaired or returned. A fixed location also gives you greater peace of mind, knowing that you are buying from a merchant with a tangible presence.