Raise your hand if you've ever been overwhelmed when you're shopping for furniture or decor on sites like Wayfair* or Target? I'm sure some of you are nodding your heads out there! I know this is a common issue from my own experience (I'm on these sites every single day for clients!) and from just talking in general to folks who are shopping for their homes. These companies have massive inventories and it can feel impossible to know how to comb through the thousands of search results that come back when you search something like "modern coffee table."
The advantage of those large inventories is that you have plenty of options, but sometimes it's just too many - wouldn't you agree? You can start to feel like a crazy person when you find yourself on page 22 of the search results and still haven't found what you were looking for!
SO, my friends, today I wanted to share a quick tip that can help you quickly narrow your search and decrease that overwhelmed feeling you get on some of these furniture and home decor websites:
Shop by brand.
Yep! These retailers generally carry a bunch of different brands and you can actually shop those brands individually. It's almost like browsing a department store where you pick and choose where you shop specifically in the store based on the particular brands you like. Rather than covering every inch of the store, you tend to focus in on the brands that match your style and budget, and shop them specifically. You can use the same strategy for places like Wayfair, Hayneedle, Overstock, and Target. When you come across brands you really like, take note!
Now, I want to get into the weeds of this a little bit for a sec to show you what this looks like across various sites and how to use this particular strategy.
There are basically three different kinds of brands you'll find on these sites:
- In-house brands
- White label/private label brands
- Third-party manufacturers
I would say in general that all of these large online furniture retailers have white labeled products and carry third-party manufactured brands, but not all of them have in-house brands.
In-house brands are the ones that the retailer designs and manufactures itself. One of the best examples of this concept is over at Target. They have several of their own lines like Project 62 and Threshold. Each has a distinct flavor, but they're all in-house brands, and you can search for a "brand shop" specifically right in the search bar. For instance, you'll see something like this pop up if you search "Project 62."
If you like modern, affordable furniture and decor, Project 62 might be a good brand for you to keep in mind, and shopping it individually will keep you from getting overwhelmed as you browse!
White label/private label brands contain products that are produced by one company and rebranded to make them appear as if another actually made it. Now, that definition makes it sound like white labeling is a bad thing, but it's not! It simply means that the company you're purchasing it from doesn't actually manufacture it. This is a very common occurrence not only at these giant retailers, but at smaller ones as well.
Sometimes white labeled or private labeled products will change names - I've found this to be especially true on Wayfair. This can make finding (or re-finding!) particular pieces of furniture or decor challenging sometimes, but in general, the "brands" they're listed under are pretty consistent.
Here's an example from Wayfair for you so you can see what I'm talking about:
Here, "Bronstein Coffee Table" is the product name and "Mercury Row" is the brand (I'm 99% sure Mercury Row is a white label brand on Wayfair). You can actually click that brand name to go to the brand shop and browse everything within it in one place. If we use the Mercury Row example, clicking that name on a product listing will land you in the shop like the image below shows you. You can also search for an individual brand in the search bar.
This method for finding brand shops works on other websites as well. One thing to note is that not all sites will have true brand shops, but you can still click the name to see all the items that the retailer carries of that particular brand.
The final category you'll see on these big websites is third party manufacturers. These are just what they sound like - they're brands that are straight-up listed on websites and always have the same brand name across the board. For example, you may be able to find Dash & Albert rugs for sale on Wayfair, Hayneedle, and a bunch of other retailers, and they'll always be called Dash & Albert rugs.
No matter which type of brand you're shopping, using these smaller brand shops to when you're on the hunt for specific items can be a lifesaver! This little secret has been awesome for me to use as I look for products for clients and for my own house. So as you go about your online shopping, start to note the brands you consistently like, and use them to to your advantage to decrease that overwhelm.
I hope this little quick tip is helpful as you go about your searches!