What to Know Before Buying Bathroom Products Online
Increasingly, people come into our showroom because they have issues with the suitability or inferiority of bathroom products they have bought online
There is no escaping the fact that we live in a digital world and make online purchases for everything from clothing and footwear, to electrical appliances and groceries.
But before you ‘click to buy’, a word of warning that choosing bathroom products is not as straightforward as it may seem. It may be okay for a few bathroom accessories, but it is always better to do full bathroom selections at a reputable showroom like ours and deal with an experienced bathroom design consultant.
Here are just a few reasons why.
Do you know exactly what you need?
If you have ever built your own home, renovated, or even watched a renovation show, you will know that bathrooms are one of the more complicated areas of the home to design and renovate.
This is partly because of the plumbing, tiling and electrical requirements and also because, over the last 10 years, the size and scope of our bathrooms have increased. We have access to more brands, there is technical information to consider when upgrading fittings, and today’s products have more features built into them. There is also a wider range of colours, styles and configurations to allow you to achieve your dream bathroom.
While online research can provide a good basis to choosing your bathroom fixtures, when it comes to shopping online, you really need to know the terminology, specifications, and how products work together. You also should have confidence in the quality of the products and understand what process is if you need to return or exchange an item.
Are the products approved in Australia?
Once you are certain that the particular product suits your requirements, you need to find out whether it is approved.
In Australia, there are regulations to ensure certain products comply with water efficiency standards (WELS) and most plumbing products must be Watermark certified. If the item does not comply with the relevant standards, a plumber will not install it. The type and size of fitting connections may also differ, making it impossible or more expensive to install.
Can you be assured of the quality?
There are many websites with beautiful pictures of bathrooms and bathroom products, but that does not mean they are good quality or will provide value for money.
Only by seeing, touching and holding a product will you get a true idea of the quality of the material (ceramic, brass, steel and stone composites) and colour finishes.
You also should find out about the warranty on the product, and how easy it will be to get after-sales service if something does go wrong. It is not enough for a company to simply state the warranty because, if they do not have a physical location, it can be very difficult getting hold of them via email or phone. So, check the credentials of the brand and/or business to make sure they have longevity, reliability and a good reputation.
Our top tips
- Don’t be fooled by appearances. With a decent website and social media presence, even the most unscrupulous operators can look ‘professional’.
- Whenever possible, buy locally or from an Australian business to help protect our country’s economic future.
- Be wary of Google reviews because businesses can and do pay for these – they may not be genuine customers.
- If you enjoy the benefit of visiting a bricks-and-mortar business to see the products and speak to expert consultants, give them the opportunity to quote for the sale.
- While the convenience and opportunity to save a few dollars might be enticing, the complexities involved with choosing the right bathroom products are not going to be resolved by an online store.
With our website’s ‘Add to proposal’ feature, you can request a proposal for the items you are interested in.