I don’t know about you, but when my wife says she wants something, she gets something. Normally that means a trip to the local Westfield, but othertimes it’s this incremental little purchases at random baby or craft sites. Which is why I was surprised at my own enjoyment at buying furniture online recently!
You see, despite being a ‘tech expert’ among my family and on TV – I just prefer walking into the local JB HiFi and buying stuff than online. Perhaps with this recent experience I’m shifting to the darkside which Gerry Harvey fails to concede even exists.
A few months back, with Baby #3 on the way, we decided our tall, dark wood large dining table and benches had to go – we live in a small townhouse afterall, so with three little ankle biters running around that wasn’t going to work.
My wife had her heart set on a particular round dining table from Ikea. We trekked there, but alas, it was sold out. Expected stock date – months away.
So an online search ensued. I suggested she have a look at Milan Direct – it’s a furniture site online run by Ruslan Kogan, the man behind Kogan.com.au electronics. He’d mentioned it to me once when we met – so, check it out we did.
They have basically got every funky fashionable piece of furniture a girl could want – all rip offs of course, sorry, replicas…
The “Eames reproduction” dining chairs and matching sitting room chairs were an immediate hit with the wife. As was the Noguchi Cyclone Dining Table – another ‘replica’ or ‘reproduction’ item.
After much debate about what we actually wanted, not anything to do with should we or shouldn’t we buy online – I made the rare but pleasing executive decision to just do it, and buy online.
I bought a Table, 4 chairs, two armchairs and even a matching rocker armchair (you dad’s will appreciate the need to sit and rock bub to sleep).
Order placed, Paypal paid. Done.
One problem – the rocker was not in stock for a month. I panicked – would we have to wait for it all? Up came the Milan Direct online chat window, and after a 2 minute text chat, confirmed – the rocker would be sent separately.
Ordered Wednesday afternoon, courier called Monday to arrange delivery Tuesday, we opted for Wednesday – and it arrived.
8 huge boxes for me to pull apart and assemble, which was, quite honestly, a ball of fun with the kids.
So, what did I learn. Firstly, I do have the patience to wait for the goodness to be delivered. Secondly with the right customer service online can be just as rewarding as in the store, and with good contact and communication even the courier delivery can suit you.
I’ll be doing it again, and again I suspect. It really can be so easy – but I’m sure there are some differing opinions. Let me know in the comments or on twitter!
Trev is a Technology Commentator, Dad, Speaker and Rev Head.
He produces and hosts two popular podcasts, EFTM and Two Blokes Talking Tech. He also appears on over 50 radio stations across Australia weekly, and is the resident Tech Expert on Channel 9’s Today Show each day and appears regularly on A Current Affair.
Father of three, he is often found down in his Man Cave.