OneKingsLane site et al

mtnrdredux_gwAugust 29, 2012

I have some questions about sites like OKL, Joss and Main, Ruelala, etc etc.

I have never purchased from these guys, but they all seem similar.

1. Do they all require you to "join" --- basically, give them your email, before you can even look? Am I paranoid to wonder if these guys are in the business of selling home furnishings or just trolling for valid emails of people we can assume have disposable income?

2. Do they not allow you to search, but instead force you to "wander" though the stores, hoping you will impulse shop. Is this like the supermarket putting the milk furthest from the door?

3. Do they all have a time element to encourage impulse shopping, too?

4. Do they offer unique goods or are they just curators?

5. Are shipping and return policies about par for the internet?

tia

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kswl2

I know people who swear by One King's Lane. I joined for a brief time and deregistered. I never found any particularly good buys or unusual items that would not be available through a designer.

Their marketing tactics are also not conducive with the way I want to shop, and I also try to minimize the number of sites that have access to my email address.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 9:05AM
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sas95

I deregistered from OKL after a few weeks, too. I bought nothing. I do think it's a legitimate site, but it's not the way I shop. I'm not an impulse buyer and by the time I decided, the few things I did want were gone. Plus, the "deals" were not really deals in the sense that you can easily find similar prices elsewhere.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 9:09AM
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BuddyBlue1

1. yes
2.no
3.yes
4.mostly curators, they do have some one of a kind (or so they say) pieces.
5. most things I have seen are final sale, I think it is Gilt that you can return and take a credit for free return shipping or pay for return shipping to return an item, but that is only on the non final sale items.
I also think the prices aren't that great on a lot of things, some you can find elsewhere at the same or lower prices.
I have ordered a few things from OKL and Gilt.
I would definitely say they rely on impulse shoppers, which I am not.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 9:11AM
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pudgybaby

I use the bugmenot logins to browse. If I ever wanted to buy, though, I suppose I would have to register in my own name. I love bugmenot.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 9:11AM
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marcolo

I will answer only for OKL.

1. Do they all require you to "join" --- basically, give them your email, before you can even look?

Yes.

2. Do they not allow you to search, but instead force you to "wander" though the stores, hoping you will impulse shop.

Yes. You shop, not search.

3. Do they all have a time element to encourage impulse shopping, too?

Yes. I am a bit suspicious of this, too. On both Gilt and OKL, sometimes things appear as "Sold Out" as soon as the sales start. The site functionality does not really allow you to buy things that quickly, so I suspect some of this may be fake.

OKL does have a good bargain basement where things aren't so rushed.

4. Do they offer unique goods or are they just curators?

Both. Well, I mean, they're just curators but do show some things you can't find elsewhere, and other things easily available elsewhere.

Prices range from good bargains to overpriced for the same items. You have to be careful.

5. Are shipping and return policies about par for the internet?

See whether you can click through to read the OKL shipping policies and the return policy without signing in.

Some things at OKL are returnable but many are final sale. I think Gilt is final sale.

However, I did get one of them (forget which) to take back a set of supposedly final-sale decanters that arrived with the prominent sticker on them, "Do not use for human consumption. May poison food." The phone rep was very nice and agreed with my WTF! reaction, and the return was no problem.

So, basically, I shop on OKL, but I keep my wits about me.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 9:22AM
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mtnrdredux_gw

bugmenot! i have to look for that.

I used to think nothing of internet privacy, since I don't have (many) deep, dark awful secrets. But now it just bugs me on principle. Good to know Im not missing anything.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 9:23AM
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tinker_2006

I just bought a chair from Joss & Main, (no refunds) I always google the item to see what other sites are offering the product for, sometimes I have to figure out who the manufacturer is. Anyways, they had a good price on the accent chair, but they sent the wrong color. Customer service was excellant, and offered for me to keep the chair, donate it or whatever.. and they were going to send the correct chair, the same chair came again. Once again, they were excellant - and had a truck here within 2 days to pick up the chairs and I received a refund within a week... but on the paper work, I notice that Joss and Main - IS WAYFAIR. Items where shipped from Wayfair & returned to Wayfair - not Joss and Main.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 9:32AM
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yayagal

I enjoy and purchase items at Joss & Main, I"ve never had any problems with them and most of the items I could not purchase locally at their low price.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 10:35AM
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lolauren

What Wayfair says about their brand, Joss & Main (targeted toward sellers:)

"Joss & Main is an exclusive private sales environment with highly engaged consumers focused on creating the home of their dreams. With frequent purchases to refresh their home, they are brand-sensitive, style-minded and extremely loyal. The carefully edited, highly curated selection on Joss & Main is a key source of inspiration and consideration. Brands featured on Joss & Main see significant follow-on interest and sales in other channels, and Joss & Main is a key channel for introducing new products or expanding your reach to new consumers in a highly controlled way."

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 10:55AM
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SunnyCottage

I bought a really cute picnic basket from OKL for my folks who enjoy traveling with their trailer. It was nice quality and as I recall, a good deal - but it took ages to receive in the mail. I had actually purchased it for my mom, thinking I'd give it to her as a birthday gift. Her early October birthday came and went, and by the time the basket finally arrived, it was a Christmas gift instead. I was not pleased by the fact that it was apparently shipped by slow boat from the middle of nowhere.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 11:13AM
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tinker_2006

.. oh that's interesting and good to know! My experience has been positive, so I will continue to check them out!

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 11:13AM
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Fun2BHere

I've purchased items from a number of the flash sales sites and here are a few comments to add to those already posted.

Shipping costs vary wildly with the best being RueLaLa at $9.95 for your first purchase in a 30-day period and free thereafter during that 30 days. OKL is the worst with shipping charges that rival standard catalog sites like Pottery Barn.

Customer service has been great at all of the sites. While items are generally final sale, a damaged or incorrect item is usually refunded or replaced quickly. Shipping does take a long time, though. Figure on at least 10 business days and probably longer.

I've had terrible luck with breakable items from OKL. Fragile glass items will be thrown in a box with a few air pillows. You couldn't hand carry those boxes without breakage much less ship them cross-country. OKL has premium members that have access to the site before the general members. I have no idea how one becomes a premium member; maybe you have to be an associate of the owners or buy a certain amount.

On all the sites, you must do your research. If an item is new, check Amazon or a Google search before you buy. The item may be available at a cheaper price or with free shipping elsewhere. If an item is vintage, know what similar items sell for in the marketplace in your area and check eBay. I've seen vintage items priced at 10X what the same item is selling for on eBay.

As far as giving them your Email address, I have a special Yahoo! address just for these types of sites. They will bombard you with daily Emails, but you can opt out of those easily. I've yet to receive any spam Emails that would suggest that one of the sites has sold my Email address. I also haven't received any snail mail generated from having my address sold from one of the sites. I don't store my credit card information on the sites, though, because I'm not sure how secure their servers are.

At a minimum, browsing the sites might spark an idea with their products. At the best, you will find terrific bargains.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 1:05PM
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patty_cakes

I've 'joined ' several of the type of sites you mentioned, and was going to order a headboard, but had a question before ordering~no one ever answered my question. It was then I became a little leary~it was Joss & Main.

Funny thing is, on my iPad I don't have to sign in. Am able to just browse.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 1:18PM
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clueless

I read that Nordstrom owns Haute Look.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703561604576150770985132088.html

I belong to these sites and use a yahoo address for them. I haven't bought anything yet.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 3:14PM
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mary9915

I belong to all the sites, OKL, RueLaLa, Gilt, Joss & Main, HomeSav, Beyond the Rack, etc, etc, etc. I've made purchases from Beyond the Rack, OKL and multiple purchases from RueLaLa.

I like them because they have variety that local shopping doesn't. I always do google research before purchasing anything to confirm value and quality.

RueLaLa runs FABULOUS sales. They have a pay once and stuff ships for 30 days deal so that's nice. OKL has sales on a candle brand I love that rarely goes on sale.

I've yet to purchase anything large (furniture or a rug) from any site because sales are usually final.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 3:32PM
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chickadee2_gw

I check them out pretty regularly because I've been able to find some pretty good deals. I haven't bought anything from OKL's decorator tag sales because there aren't any bargains there. I've never had a problem with any of the sites. No spam. The items I received from OKL were always nicely packaged and a couple of times they've even thrown in a little gift. I think I read that their merchandise isn't on site and has to be sent to them from the supplier. When they receive the item, it's checked and then sent to the customer. That does cause a delay in receiving items from them. The other sites are faster in shipping. I don't buy many items on impulse unless I can return them. I've been able to pick up nice things for gifts when I was just browsing. On each site there's usually a place where you can pull up the upcoming sales for that week. You can opt out of the daily reminders in your email. I figure this business with registering is kind of like a magazine subscription. If they can say they have x number of subscribers, they may be able to get more manufacturers interested in listing their items with them. That's just my guess.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 3:56PM
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gsciencechick

I'm not even sure which of these I get emails from as they all seem to run together. I recently subscribed to Fab, and I like their stuff. I ordered these really cool cat perches, that, unfortunately, the cats really don't seem to use them. I can't return them, and they are installed in studs so not easily removable. Hoping the the cats will figure it out.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 7:24PM
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sheilaaus122

I unsubscribed from the emails, but have a log in so I can browse when I want to. The amount of emails gets a bit overwhelming. The other thing I do is that I have several emails so I feel less vulnerable. Maybe that is naive, but I feel better for it:) I have not ordered anything from any of them yet. I do get that if and when I do, my credit card info and shipping info will be there but I will deal with that when I get there. Deleting unwelcome emails is annoying, but no big deal and effective!

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 7:26PM
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mtnrdredux_gw

Thanks again, everyone, you guys have saved my so much time figuring this all out. The final sale bit is a deal breaker for me I think

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 8:21PM
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