Personally, I am not a fan of buying wood floors online. Read my article “Buying Wood Floors Online vs. Locally” and you will see why.
However, if you are set on the idea of buying your wood floors online, here are some important things to consider before purchasing:
1. Choose an online retailer with a phone number (make sure it actually works!). It seems really basic but it’s really important. If you have any problems or concerns – email is not enough. If you pay for your floors and they don’t come – you want to call them. If your floors come on time but they are damaged – you also want to call them. It is more personable on the phone and that is the superior way to do customer service.
2. Call and talk to a sales rep over the phone. Get a sense of their customer service. Even if most of your questions are answered on their web site, it is worth calling and experiencing their customer service for yourself. You want to purchase from a company that has exceptional customer service. Phoning your online wood floor retailer is the only way you will know what their customer service is like.
3. The return policy should be very clear and simple. As your wood floors are being shipped, there are occasional problems with shipping where products get damaged. It is very important that the company you choose will take back damaged floorboards without any issues. Also, see if they give refunds, too. Find out what is needed for a refund.
4. Do your reading on the online wood flooring retailer you are choosing. It is so important that you know what you are buying. Sometimes comments are written by the company pretending to be the customer. It sounds awful but it is true. Read everything very carefully and read as much as you can. If it sounds too good to be true, it is probably the company writing it parading as the consumer.
5. Get samples before purchasing. The colors on your computer screen never match the actual color of the flooring. You want to see what you are getting and look at the quality of the wood.
6. Ask for referrals and testimonials from the wood flooring company. Often they will have testimonials but get whatever you can get from them. It is worth calling and asking for a name or two. If they are reluctant to give a name out, you may want to call the Better Business Bureau.
7. Compare different online companies. See what different wood flooring companies have to offer and see which ones are better. Do reading on several companies before you select the online retailer that you are going to go with.
8. Take your time selecting the floor and the company you want. Even if their is sale right now, those sales come often. Don’t panic. Do your reading and asking questions before making your purchase.
9. Remember that when you get your wood flooring, it will be up to you to find your own floor installer if you are not going to do it yourself. You may get a referral for a wood flooring installer from the wood flooring company you purchase your floors from but don’t count on it.
Good luck and happy shopping!