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7 Tips on Shopping for Furniture Online

Castlery   |   Aug 21, 2020

Home decorating has seen considerable shifts in recent years, with many homeowners shopping for their furniture online.

Skeptical about navigating the world of cyber shopping? Armed with thorough research and careful thought, making a successful online furniture purchase can be a smooth sailing process.

1. Work out your style and budget

minimalist fabric 3-seater sofa Pictured: The Pebble Sofa is a versatile piece that’ll pair well with a variety of decor styles. Image credit: @finding.jules

The first two things to pin down are your budget and interior aesthetics, so you won’t wind up with the buyer’s remorse you’ll kick yourself for later on. You may adore a particular piece, but will it fit your room or age gracefully?

If you have no clue where to begin, here’s our take: for major items, invest in neutral, timeless designs that’ll last through changing tastes and the years to come, or ones you will spend the most time on — like a quality sofa, if you often chill out in the living room.

2. Breaking out the measuring tape

minimalist wood dining table, chairs and dining bench Pictured: The stylishly compact Seb Extendable Dining Table can fit perfectly in a cosy space or be extended to accommodate family and friends. Image credit: @jacquelynedna

Before browsing virtual aisles for the perfect dining table or entryway console, assess your space and nail down where each piece will go. Mark out and determine the dimensions of where the object will sit so you can visualise your layout - leave enough room to walk or for other furniture.

This applies to passageways, doorways, hallways, elevators and stairways, too. It’s easier to measure a couple of times than to return an item that‘s wayyy too big for your space, or can’t even fit through the door.

home decorating AR app home decorating AR app

When buying furniture online, it may be hard to visualise exactly how it’ll match your decor. This is where the Castlery iOS shopping app comes in handy. Before committing to a purchase, you’ll get to envision your dream room with our app’s augmented reality (AR) capability.

Virtually decorate your personal space with true-to-scale 3D models from a wide range of our crowd-favourites, right down to details such as fabric, wood and leather textures.

Other handy features: you’ll get to add multiple styles, browse through the rest of our catalogue, and it’s a breeze to check out and make payment, too.

Note: The app is compatible only with iOS, versions 11 and above.

4. Function and proportion

walnut wood TV console Pictured: The slim, low-height Luka TV Console is ideal for a petite space while offering generous storage for media devices. Image credit: @styleitprettyhome

The different furniture pieces you choose should complement each other, as well as the room’s architecture. For instance, furniture that sits near the ground creates the illusion of height in a low-ceilinged room.

modular chaise sectional sofa and rattan coffee table Pictured: Adams Chaise Sectional Sofa with Ottoman, and Mico Coffee Table.

Think about the practicalities and functions, too.

If you’re in the market for a sofa, a solid construction, a suitable depth and its firmness are key. But also consider its style - do you have a large family or entertain often? A modular sofa, like the Adams sofa collection offers the option of various seating configurations.

5. Read the reviews

rattan armchair and stool in resort-style home Pictured: The Mico Armchair and Mico Stool add to the laid-back vibes of this resort-inspired home. Image credit: @akenfoo

Every seasoned online shopper will know to check out the reviews. After all, who better to trust if a furniture delivers as it promises than a fellow shopper who has bought and taken it for a spin?

Head to our Reviews page to see what other shoppers have to say about that bed frame or coffee table you’re mulling over. Customer reviews aside, you can also pop by our Instagram page to for more real home inspiration!

6. Know what you're getting

Before hitting the ‘Checkout’ button, always read the product description, specifications and dimensions to save you from potential disappointment when your order arrives at the doorstep. It’ll also give you a better idea of the product you’re buying.

Even better, we offer product videos so you get a clearer picture of the furniture piece on your shortlist.

colourful variety of fabric furniture swatches

When it comes to upholstered furniture, the right fabric can make or break your decor. Plus, it can look different on the screen.

To help you get an actual sense of the fabrics, colours and textures that work for you, we provide complimentary swatches that’ll be delivered right to your doorstep. Simply select up to three of your favourite fabric samples (no payment details needed!) and add it to your shopping cart.

7. Check (and triple check!) the fine print

We’re talking delivery, return and exchange policies, and warranties. It’s also prudent to check that your retailer uses a reliable payment system (we’ve partnered Stripe for secure payment and protection against fraud).

Changing your mind or questioning your furniture choice after you bought it happens, and we totally get it. Always look out for online furniture stores that allow you adequate time to reconsider your purchase.

Should you have a change of heart, we have a Standard Return Policy for undamaged items in their original packaging. And to save you the hassle of organising returns, we’ll arrange for the item to be sent back to us (within 14 days from the date you receive it). Terms and conditions apply.

And don’t forget about delivery and shipping rates. An affordable dining set wouldn’t exactly be a steal with the addition of exorbitant delivery fees. We work with delivery partners across Australia to offer on-time and secure delivery. Shipping rates are only charged once per order, and are capped according to the type of the item(s) in your order and your delivery location.

For more information on the list of locations that we deliver to and delivery fees, click here. Need more info? Direct your mouse here.

Ready to get to furnishing your dream space? Head right here to explore our range.