It is so easy to shop on-line. You can research and buy without leaving your easy chair. And you can do it 24 hours a day in your underwear. So why get dressed, get in the car and drive to a brick and mortar store? What possible advantage can there be to having the in-person, tactile experience of a product you want to buy? Well, that is the first reason. You can feel it, touch it, and experience it in three dimensions instead of just viewing a small picture of it. If it is furniture, you can sit in it or rub your hand across the wood, the metal, or the fabric. If it is a lighting fixture, you can experience the lighting emitted, and you can study its mechanical quality up-close and hands-on. Buying a higher quality item for more money can be less expensive in the long run, as it can last longer both structurally and stylistically.
When you go to a brick and mortar store with professional sales people, you get a service that does not exist on the internet. It can’t. You get a live person who can listen to your wants, evaluate your needs, and come up with solutions you may have never considered on your own. And that’s worth money, but often does not cost any more. You also can develop a relationship with a professional that understands your taste, respects your budget, and can help manage a long term plan for improving your space. I once had a client who told me that paying her designer to help her saved money. She only had to do everything once with him. When she tried to do it on her own, she often had to redo what she had selected.
What happens if there is problem with your purchase? When you purchase from a brick and mortar store, you can work with that store to resolve whatever issues exist. The better brick and mortars make that process so much easier than trying to resolve the same problem on-line. In fact, they often have repair or service personnel that can come to the house and resolve the problem. Good luck finding that on-line!
And last, but certainly not least, when you shop at that brick and mortar store, you support your local economy. You help a neighbor pay for his or her child’s doctor bill, or art lesson. You help someone local pay their mortgage. And you help pay for the fire department, schools, police, animal shelter, and all the other city services. This one is a win-win. You get what you want at a fair price, and you help make your city a better place to live.