Learn to shop smart online for furniture like a pro

Learn to shop smart online for furniture

 

I GET ASKED FREQUENTLY WHERE IS THE BEST PLACE TO FIND FURNITURE. 

You can only imagine the looks that I get when my response is: I SHOP ONLINE!

That's right I enjoy shopping online as much as any homeowner. Sometimes I get the look of disbelief and sometimes even uncertainty with my response. But online shopping can open up a whole world of opportunity to make sure you have examined lots of different sources and you are getting the best price. Maybe you are wondering how you can decorate a home with online shopping through retailers such as Target, Hobby Lobby, Pier 1, At home, Wayfair, and Amazon. Here are 7 things to do to make sure you shop smart online.

HAVE A DESIGN PLAN BEFORE YOU SHOP SMART ONLINE FOR FURNITURE

Shopping online can be overwhelming when you don't have a plan. This is due to the hugh amount of products you can choose from online. A store may have 5 comforters in a gray color that you are looking from. If you search for gray comforters online then you will find there are thousands of options. If you take the guesswork out of what you are looking for and specify more it will narrow the selection. With a design plan for your room, you will know the colors and patterns that will work best in your space. Use the information on your design plan to filter your selections you can narrow down by size, color, and style.

Do you need a design plan? 

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SET REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS WHEN YOU SHOP SMART ONLINE

Expect for items to look somewhat different when you receive them. Buying from a picture is different from actually being able to see a piece of furniture. It can be tricky to tell the quality, exact color, or texture when buying from a picture.

This is why it's important you review and understand exchange or return policies before you order online. If you are concerned about the quality of a piece then you should contact the company about any questions you have before ordering. Check and see if there are any local stores that carry the product so you can go see it in person. 

READ THE REVIEWS WHEN YOU SHOP SMART ONLINE FOR FURNITURE

Most, products will have at least one previous buyer. It's good to read the reviews and see how other people would describe the product and the service from the company you are buying from. This is a good way to get a feel for the quality. If there are no reviews use the name of the product and search online for it. See if any other companies have reviews on the product.

Pro Tip: Be sure to compare shipping rates as well. 

REVIEW THE POLICIES AND SHIPPING WHEN YOU SHOP SMART ONLINE FOR FURNITURE

Make sure you read and understand all the policies and shipping before you order. Most companies now allow for returns, but not all of them. Some may only allow for exchanges and others may even charge a restocking fee and you are likely to be responsible for return shipping costs. There's more than one type of delivery service so make sure you understand both before ordering. If you don't you may end up carrying a  heavy piece of furniture all the way from the street up to your apartment.

STUDY MATERIALS WHEN YOU SHOP SMART ONLINE FOR FURNITURE

Most product websites have a magnifying glass on their page where you can zoom into the product. Use this feature to examine and study the materials before you order.  Try zooming in on colors and patterns to see more details about texture and patterns. Go further than just the picture and make sure you check the materials list. This list can show what the item includes. Don't assume that if it is in the picture it comes with the product. I saw a table recently that was sold only as a base and had no table top. Imagine the disappointment when you received this table with no top. The money you spent would not feel like such a good deal after all being you have to now either return the base or order the table top. 

EXPECT SOME ASSEMBLY TO BE REQUIRED WHEN YOU SHOP SMART ONLINE FOR FURNITURE

Furniture is difficult to ship when it is completely assembled. Expect some assembly to be required when you shop online. This is due the size and weight of the product. There may even be more than one delivery of your furniture to your home. Be sure to read the fine print in the shipping to see if the order will ship together or separate. You are going to need a few tools to be able to assemble the furniture. Most pieces will be easily assembled but may require small hand tools such as screwdrivers and hammers. 

GOOGLE IT BEFORE YOU SHOP SMART ONLINE FOR FURNITURE

You may find the same product at another retailer (I find this all the time). Finding the same product at multiple retailers will allow you to read more reviews and see who has the best price. Google will sometimes help you shop by making a suggestion to a similar product. 

I created a guide for you, so you can shop smart online for furniture! You can save this download so the next time you shop smart online so you will remember all the ways to shop smart online.