As a small example, let's take a recent online purchase of a dining room table set I made. I found a great deal on a dining room set that was identical to a set I saw in one of my local furniture stores. It was a couple hundred dollars less than the store’s set, so I decided to hop on it. When I received my set, everything was great but one of the table’s legs was broken in half. Seemingly a small issue, but there is no way you are setting up a 3-legged table according to the law of physics. I called up the online seller; it turns out they were in back-order for that model and it would be another 2-3 weeks until they could ship out another part. So now the process went from the 2-week initial shipment time to now another 2-3 weeks to wait for my replacement leg. At the end, my dining room table was finally in place more than A MONTH after I purchased it. Additionally, it is a lot more flimsy in real life then it looked online.
That was just a table; buying your once in a lifetime wedding gown online is an even worse decision. If you try to buy your dress online and there is some unexpected detail, I will say good luck trying to call your online seller to fix it. Online sellers are not in the business to excel at customer service, but to SELL you their products to someone they have never met and likely never will meet. Additionally, if you think having your dining room looking empty for a month is a disaster, try having your wedding dress arrive with problems.
There are many benefits to purchasing your dress from a bridal shop. In addition to working with an experienced consultant to find the most suitable, affordable, and attractive dress for your body type, you have the extra comfort in knowing they will always be there to help out until the day of wedding. There are endless details that go into each and every wedding dress and it goes without saying at least one of them might be a bit off for your taste. You cannot expect to order a dress online and have it arrive 100% perfect. As a long-time Bridal Shop owner, I have seen countless cases of women purchasing awful dresses online and having the seller decline any requests for a refund. This has been a very common theme, especially in the last 5 years. The truth is many dresses available online are cheap knockoffs of the real deal and many people only realize this when it's too late.
- BRIDAL CONSULTANTS HAVE AN EXPERIENCED EYE- Bridal Shop consultants typically have years of experience helping women pick out bridal gowns. They know all about Body Types, Colors, Matching Dresses w/ Venue Type, Gown Designers & Collections, Colors, and more. This provides priceless insights into selecting the right gown for you. On the other hand, there is very little or no customer service experience when shopping online. It's more like playing the lottery and hoping you get it right. That’s not a strategy you want to count on.
- PEACE OF MIND - In addition to getting In-Store customer service, you also will have the peace of mind that goes with purchasing your dress from a store. You can always call or visit the store if you have questions before your wedding date. After buying from an online seller, best of luck trying to hunt them down for answers. Typically these online stores are based out of China, India, or other countries that you can't exactly visit on a whim.
- COST - While the upfront cost of a dress online may be less expensive than from a Bridal Store, you have to consider the actual cost. By actual, I mean, after all is said and done, how much did you spend on the dress? You can count everything from shipping costs, additional alteration cost, and emotional cost.
- EMOTIONAL STRESS - A wedding dress is one of the essential components of a wedding for the bride. If something goes wrong, that can result in major stress and anxiety for what should be one of the most special events of your life. You have to treat the bridal dress selection process with the utmost delicacy and tenderness.