In this post, we have checked with the experts for insider tips, on how to buy furniture online for every nook and cranny in your house, while avoiding common online-shopping missteps. Read on so that you can click and shop with confidence!
Design: U-Home Interior Design
#1. Reputation Is Important
Make sure that the furniture company has a solid customer track record, so that you do not encounter any delivery delays, or issues with the product quality. Look out for telltale signs by reviewing the ratings, the comments in the discussion forums or social media page and so on. Remember to perform a background research on the duration the furniture company has been in the industry, and whether it is inside the CASE consumer alert list.
Design: The Interior Lab
#2. Return Policy Is A Must
A return policy helps to cover you in the event the item delivered looks completely different from what you have expected, or damaged during delivery. Hence, you should find out the terms and conditions for the refund, how much value will be refunded and how long the refund process will take. Usually, the items returned must be in its original condition and customised or clearance items are not eligible for return. Furthermore, a restocking fee will be charged and the refund process should be completed within a month.
Design: Fineline Design
#3. Price Protection Is A Bonus
Having a price protection policy from the date of purchase means that you do not have to worry whether if the furniture you are eyeing is going to be put up for sales soon. Typically, there is a 30-day price protection policy from the date of purchase, where you can ask for a price adjustment credit voucher to be credited into your account for future purchases.
Design: Mad About Design
#4. Measure Everything
Precise measurement is the key to successful hauls from the internet. Hence, taking down the dimensions of the floor plan is not enough. You should perform an on-site survey, to ensure that there are no unexpected obstructions that will affect the placement of the furniture. For instance, if you are getting a wardrobe in a particular corner of the bedroom, make sure that there are no protruding beams overhead.
Design: Hock Hoon
#5. Material Used Matters
Since you are unable to inspect the furniture in person, make sure that you know the types of materials used, before committing to the purchase. For instance, furniture made of solid wood or plywood is definitely more lasting and expensive as compared to one that is made of chipboard. Remember to steer clear of online stores which do not have a detailed description of the materials used for the furniture.
Design: Rockin Spaces
#6. Colours Shown Are Not Representative
Colours look different on computer monitors and mobile phones due to the pixels, resolution and bit depth. Furthermore, the stylised photos of the furniture are usually taken under strong studio lights and some have undergone colour enhancements to make them look more appealing. Hence, to get a clearer idea of what the actual product looks like, remember to ask for a fabric, laminate or leather colour swatch to help you make the right choice.
Design: The Interior Lab
#7. Beware Of Shipping Costs And Taxes
As varying shipping companies offer different shipping and handling rates, and some might also charge a handling fee. Hence, remember to find out the actual shipping and handling fees first before making the purchase. If you are purchasing from overseas stores, you have to factor in the GST costs too.
Design: THIRD PARAGRAPH INTERIOR
#8. Only Shop From Secure And Reliable Websites
Purchasing furniture from secure websites will minimise the risk of identity theft or getting your credit card details stolen. A secure site usually starts with HTTPS, which stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure, which is a combination of the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) with the Secure Socket Layer (SSL). In layman terms, it means that the connection between your web browser and the store’s web server is encrypted. When viewing a secure website, the Site Identity button will be a padlock which you can double-click to review information about the website’s security measures. However, these are not enough since it is also possible for a fake or spoofed website to be also secured with HTTPS. Therefore, you need to look out for telltale signs such as bad English, lack of any real information on the furniture shop and missing contact details. Sometimes, the fake online store is offering cheap pricing that is too unbelievable to be true.
This article was originally posted on Renonation.sg, Singapore’s leading renovation and interior design site.