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Do Negative Furniture Reviews Give you the Whole Picture?

Do Negative Furniture Reviews Give you the Whole Picture?

Question: Do Negative Furniture Reviews Give you the Whole Picture?

Is it possible to find out about a manufacturer from online furniture reviews? I am in process of furnishing a new home and wanted to find out about a couple of manufacturers of upholstered furniture.

I recognize that it is often those that have a complaint that are more likely to write online reviews, so I wondered if you can get the whole picture from them.

Answer: Online furniture reviews very often do not give a complete picture of the product or manufacturer. If you read them carefully you will find out that they are not really reviews of the furniture itself.

You are correct that those who have a complaint are usually more likely to write. Satisfied consumers are too busy enjoying their purchase to bother writing about it. But you can afford to disregard many negative reviews based on these issues:

Complaints About Customer Service

Very often you will also find that the reviewers are really not talking about the manufacturer at all. They are talking about their shopping experience while buying a manufacturer’s product.

If you go through furniture customer reviews you will find that most customers are complaining about bad customer service, a rude salesperson, botched up delivery dates and also botched up deliveries where the furniture is delivered in a damaged state, or the delivery people damage the customer’s property.

If you think about it, this is a review of the retailer from whom they bought their furniture, and not so much about the manufacturer.

Brand Stores are Not Necessarily Owned By Manufacturers

Here is something that most furniture shoppers do not seem to realize: a brand store is not necessarily owned by the manufacturer of the brand. For instance, Ashley Home Stores are independent franchises, and not owned by Ashley Furniture itself. However, they will carry Ashley furniture exclusively.

A dissatisfied customer is often actually dissatisfied with how that particular franchised store handles her order, and not the furniture itself.

Dissatisfaction with Custom Orders

Dissatisfaction with custom furniture orders may also lead to negative reviews, but again it is the retail operation which did not do their job well. They either messed up the order, or did not bother to properly inform the customer.

This often happens with upholstered furniture where the customer may unknowingly order a fabric that is no longer available. It is the job of the furniture store to inform the customer about the availability of upholstery fabrics, or finishes in the case of case goods.

When the Furniture Arrives Damaged

Sometimes the much awaited furniture arrives in a damaged state. Anyone would be upset when this happens. This may well be the fault of the delivery people who damaged the furniture in loading or unloading. It is also possible that the furniture was damaged in transit from the manufacturing site. There is a possibility of this happening especially if it was made overseas and shipped from there.

When There is Bad Furniture from Reputable Manufacturers

Badly made wood furniture is furniture that jiggles, has jagged edges or where the finish has not been applied well. In the case of upholstered furniture, the seams may be giving out, or the patterns are not correctly aligned. The cushions are not resilient, or in case of motion furniture the mechanism does not operate smoothly.

When these things happen, you would definitely call them manufacturing defects. When you read customer reviews, this is the aspect that you should be paying attention to more than anything else. If you consistently come across reports that mention these faults then you may worry.

However, you have to remember that out of millions of pieces manufactured and sold, there are bound to be some pieces that are faulty. Any good furniture store will exchange that furniture for you, and that is why you should always learn about the return or exchange policy of the furniture store before you buy.

What is a Helpful Review?

A helpful furniture review will inform you what kind of furniture you can expect to find, including style, quality, and price points. It will also mention where a manufacturer stands in relation to others making the same kind of furniture.

With that knowledge, look for reputable dealers, whether you’re heading for a brick and mortar store or buying online. You will find as a general rule that you get what you pay for, and that it is always best to judge for quality yourself.

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