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In the last decade, the amount of goods sold and bought online has continued to grow exponentially. Now more than ever people are switching from purchasing off the high street, to ordering online from the comfort of their own homes. This relatively new way of shopping has found its way into virtually all goods, services and consumer products, and has fundamentally shifted the way we think about shopping. To no surprise, over the last decade e-commerce has found its way into the tile and interiors industry. However, is this a good thing for the customer?
When it comes to ordering tiles online, the process is universal for most companies who stock and sell products. You search and browse online, look at a few images of the tiles, and then you can request a small sample to see if it right for you. If all is well, you can order the tiles and sooner or later a pallet of goods arrives at your location. Sounds great right? Well, unfortunately, the process of purchasing tiles is online is profoundly flawed and can end up costing the customer money.
The first issue arises from the get-go. When selecting your tiles while online you are provided with pictures. It is usually one basic view of the tile paired with a picture of them in an example setting. Now although the images will be of high quality, it is impossible to have a real understanding of the colours, details, textures, finishes, and quality without physically looking at the tiles in the desired location. To see and feel tiles in person is of great importance, as subtle touches could have significant impacts once they are fitted.
Although samples are provided, this does not solve the issue but can add to it. They are small, which significantly limits your ability to see the textures and finishes that run through the tiles. Additionally, every tile is manufactured in batches, and these are always slightly different from the previous one. So, there is a good chance that the sample you receive won’t look identical to what you order.
Receiving packages from online is usually easy; a couple of clicks then a few days later a parcel arrives. However, when it comes to tiles is not quite the same. Firstly, the shipping costs are far more expensive due to the weight, and if you need to return them because of damages, the price usually falls on the customer. Also, after your tiles are delivered and dropped off in your drive/street, the customer is then given the task of moving the heavy load inside. A big difference from ordering a new outfit!
Buying tiles online have risks, and when it comes to purchasing them your much safer to do so from a credible showroom. You can look and feel the tiles in person and take multiple tile samples away to see how they look at the location which removes any unwanted surprises. We also make sure that every tile matches the batch you ordered, giving you product consistency even if you need more ordered at a later date. As for shipping, we provide a flexible service that will deliver the tiles anywhere you want, so you don’t do the heavy lifting!
We believe the risks involved, along with the lack of bespoke personal service when purchasing tiles online is enough not to take the risk. If you feel like this article has changed your view and want some expert advice on selecting the right tiles for you, please get in touch with us via our contact page. You can also browse through a selection of our tiles here.
Some things are perfect for selling online, tiles, unfortunately, are not one of them.