Buying Furniture Online vs In Store: Which is Better?

September 6, 2023  ·  7 min read  ·  Reviewed by Sarah Zubowski

Buying furniture online vs in-store is a decision that many shoppers still struggle with today. If you find yourself asking, “Why is buying furniture so hard?” you may be stuck in a shopping cycle that you’re not happy with. Going to the furniture store takes so much time and effort while shopping online can mean becoming overwhelmed by options that you can’t test out in person. 

In our expert opinion, because furniture is such an important investment for your home, it should be bought with careful consideration, not on a whim. Knowing how to buy quality furniture in the most efficient and cost-effective way can help you buy pieces that you will actually want to keep in your home for years to come. 

So, if you need new furniture, is it better to buy furniture online or in-store? While both methods of furniture shopping have their pros and cons, only one method can guarantee that you will get the high-quality furniture that you love — shopping in-store. Our furniture experts are here to explain why.

Why do people prefer to buy furniture online?

Although we believe that shopping in person is the best way to shop for furniture, why do consumers nowadays prefer to purchase their furniture online? One word: convenience. For some shoppers, shopping from the comfort of their own homes seems far more convenient than going to a store for the following reasons:

  • It cuts down on travel time
  • You can customize the piece you want online
  • The furniture can be shipped right to your door
  • It eliminates the need to speak to salespeople 
  • You can shop with multiple different retailers at once

However, if we really think about it, does shopping online really save you that much time and money? 

The cons of online furniture shopping

If you factor in all of the cons of shopping online, you’ll find that using the world wide web to furnish your home can result in some of the most basic furniture buying mistakes:

  • You could spend hours browsing multiple websites and still not find what you want
  • You won’t really know what you’re buying until it shows up in your home
  • You won’t know the quality of the piece before you buy it
  • You may select the wrong size, fabric, or color
  • You may purchase a piece that doesn’t fit well with your current home decor 
  • You may hate the way the piece looks or feels in person (and then it’s too late!)
  • You can miss greater in-store promotions and discounts that are not available online (most in-store offers are better than online promotions)

Buying furniture online simply comes with a lot of risks that may end up costing you more money in the long run. While it’s tempting to purchase cheap, assemble-it-yourself furniture off of IKEA or Amazon’s websites, you’ll end up spending more money to replace those pieces than you would have if you invested in high-quality furniture in the first place. Knowing how to buy quality furniture starts with shopping at the right store.

Is it better to buy furniture online or in-store? (Hint: in-store!)

No spoilers here, but the best place to buy furniture is in person at a brick-and-mortar store, especially if you plan on investing in bigger furniture pieces such as your living room furniture. There really aren’t any disadvantages to furniture shopping in person if you shop at Living Designs Furniture. Our resident furniture expert, Sarah Zubowski, explains why shopping in person will give you the best results.

No surprises = no regrets 

When you purchase anything online, not just furniture, you’re taking a gamble. You won’t know exactly what the item looks like, its actual size, how it feels, how it performs, etc. A shirt could look cute on a website but feel terrible and fit awkwardly in person. You just never truly know what you’re dealing with until it is delivered to your home. 

Now, an ill-fitting shirt from an online store that costs $20 isn’t considered a huge loss — but a sofa, sectional, bed frame, or other more expensive furniture piece that isn’t what you expected will definitely cause you some stress.

If you were to shop in-store, you would be confident and calm knowing that the pieces you’ve selected are exactly what you want and will fit in your home wonderfully. This is because you can physically inspect the piece to know that it is to your liking in terms of size, materials, shape, fabric, and more! Fewer surprises will make you a happier customer.

Less stress = better experience  

As we mentioned earlier, shopping online can cause major decision fatigue as you scroll endlessly through multiple furniture websites. Sometimes, there are just too many options! Not to mention, if you need help, your only resource is a faceless chatbot that has no real knowledge of interior design — not to mention your individual needs. How will it know if a 3-piece sectional or a sofa chaise would complement your living room area better? It can’t! 

The Living Designs Furniture showroom is designed to reduce decision fatigue by having a simple layout with meticulously placed furniture models so you can browse without feeling overwhelmed. The less stressed you are, the clearer your head will be to make more informed decisions. This means less impulsive spending on furniture you don’t really know if you like or need.

You will also be greeted by a furniture expert, not a pushy salesperson, who is here to answer any questions you may have about what type of furniture is best for you and your home. Only an expert can answer these questions to ask when buying furniture in a way that will cater to your individual needs, home, and lifestyle. 

Get the best in-person furniture shopping experience at Living Designs Furniture

In summary, convenience isn’t always king when it comes to furniture shopping. When you’re deciding whether buying furniture online vs in-store is the move for you, remember that online shopping can be a one-way ticket to discomfort and disappointment. If you want furniture that will be perfect when it arrives, we highly recommend shopping in person to truly see and feel what you’re buying. 

And believe us when we say that our furniture shopping process is easier and more convenient than any other furniture store in Houston. 

Another way to guarantee that your pieces will be top-quality is by buying furniture directly from the manufacturer. Living Designs Furniture is not only a retail showroom, but a showroom that is connected to our on-site factory. Our expert craftsmen hand-make every piece we sell using only the highest quality materials available. This allows us to make the best custom furniture in Houston as well as the best, ready-to-buy, in-stock furniture for amazing prices. 

If you’re ready to find your dream furniture stress-free, come on down to our showroom in Downtown Houston or book a free design consultation and speak with one of our experts about how we can make your vision a reality. 

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