Furniture Shopping Online
Online shopping continues to grow across virtually all product categories. One interesting product category for online shopping is that of furniture sales. As with anything else in the world, there are certain advantages and disadvantages to purchasing furniture items online. This article will try to highlight some of the pros and cons of shopping for and buying furniture online. It will also try and give some tips and other information to consider when making an online furniture purchase that will help to make the experience better.
The benefits to online furniture sales can be great. For one it allows people making distinctive and unique furniture available to a broader market. For consumers with specific tastes, shopping online for furniture can greatly expand the number of options beyond what is available locally through traditional brick and mortar stores. Even in a city like Houston, TX, where just on the drive from the airport to downtown there are numerous furniture stores, not every single style in the world is available. Also, it allows greater ability for customization, as an online catalog showing many possible configurations is much more affordable to produce and circulate than a printed catalog. Since in the vast majority of cases processing and shipping will be required anyway it is not an extra burden to wait a little longer to get a completely individualized product.
Other benefits for businesses are the reduced overhead. By eliminating the need to rent an expensive showroom, and online furniture dealer can cut some costs. Most retailer will pass at least some of those savings on to customers, so customers get better pricing as well.
There are a few draw-backs to shopping for furniture online. The first thing that comes to mind is the wait. Shopping locally in stores that offer same-day delivery means you can enjoy your furniture purchase much faster. A number of local Houston area-stores offer same day delivery on some or all of their furniture items.
Aside from the wait there is the shipping cost. The shipping charged to the customer can vary widely from website to website. In some cases the shipping can be high depending on not only on how much the item weighs, but also its dimensions, as most freight carriers charge not only by weight but also by size. In many cases the shipping charges for your order are not too much higher than what some local stores may charge for delivery. In a few cases there are web-based furniture dealers who are able to build the cost of shipping into the sticker price and offer free shipping for customers.
It is not always easy to get a feel for a product just by images and descriptions. Depending on how the photos are shot, at times it may be hard to tell the scale of an item. Also, colors on a computer monitor can be slightly off since changes to computer monitor settings can result in colors appearing different than intended. The fact that every computer monitor varies in its capabilities and settings only makes things more difficult. Size is also an issue at times because product dimensions may not always be clear, and some online retailers fail to offer them at all.