Try It Before You Buy It: Products You Should Try Before You Buy

In an economy like today, you can’t afford to be an impulsive shopper. In fact, it’s crucial to be the most informed shopper possible. Reading reviews, doing research and talking with past buyers are great shopping tactics; however, the most important thing you can do to ensure your purchase isn’t a waste is trying a product before you buy it.

Remember your college search days when you would stay at a college for a weekend to really get a feel for the school? Well, this same rule should apply to all big purchases.

Here are four products you should take the time to try before you buy:


It’s obvious that you would never purchase a car unless you took it for a test drive. However, do you apply that same rule of thumb to other vehicles?

For example, if you are a construction owner, do you give your employees the opportunity to test drive industrial equipment like forklifts, tractors and other operating machinery? If not, you need to start doing it.

Don’t let a good price and service agreement blind you from other important factors; the most important being comfort. It’s important that whoever will be operating the machine feels comfortable with the controls and ergonomic capabilities.

Most vehicle vendors will let you rent trucks, forklifts and other vehicles for at least a week, giving you a sense of how the machine’s abilities meet your everyday needs. If they don’t, that might be a warning sign that they are rushing you through your purchase.

Exercise Equipment

Buying new exercise equipment is fueled by the same “spark” that gives you your New Year’s resolution: it’s easier said than done. It’s easy to say that you’ll become a runner this year than actually going out and training.

When it comes to expensive exercise equipment, you shouldn’t buy on an impulse. In fact, whatever equipment you are considering purchasing should be something that you have been training with for months.

For instance, if you have just started jogging on a regular basis, don’t think that buying a treadmill will encourage you to run more. Instead, you should go to the gym and try out as many different treadmill models as you can. You should also try running on a track or park. This will help you decide how you like to run.

This same idea goes for other exercise equipment like an elliptical or bench press. Often going to the gym and socializing is the best part of exercising. However, if you know you would rather run inside, then by all means do it! Just make sure you know you’ll enjoy it and you know exactly what type of model you want to buy.

Cell Phones

Today’s mobile users are faced with a daunting decision: what type of phone to purchase?

Mobile users have to decide between an iPhone or Droid; BlackBerry or Palm; touch screen or keypad; video chat capabilities or social networking capabilities etc. There are no easy decisions when it comes to mobiles nowadays.

Although this variety is a great problem to have, it can also be a stressful. To make matters worse, all the research in the world won’t help you make a decision until you’ve experienced a phone. Fortunately, most networks like AT&T give you a 30-day trial to try your new phone penalty-free should you decide to return it.

If your mobile network doesn’t give you a trial period, ask a friend to lend you their phone for a day. One day is plenty of time to get an idea of how you will use the phone, how often you will use is, and what type of apps or features you want the phone to have.

There are so many great cell phones on the market; however, make sure you pick the one mobile model that is the best choice for you.

Pools, Hot Tubs, Saunas and Spas

You wouldn’t be interested in purchasing a pool, hot tub, sauna or spa unless you’ve already experience one. The relaxation and health remedies these products offer are overwhelming and influential enough to urge you to buy one.

However, it’s important to test out these products for at least a week so you get a sense of how they will fit into your everyday life. If you know someone who has these products, ask them to swap houses for a week. This way, it will give you a chance to test these two important factors:

Use Amount: You think you will relax in your pool and sauna every night but the reality is you are probably over estimating how often you will be able to use it. Staying at a house where there is a pool or sauna will give you the best idea as to if the product really fits into your schedule.

Maintenance: Hot tub and spa relaxation benefits can easily distract you from the number one responsibility these products bring: maintenance. Hot tubs and spas with advanced filtration systems still require regular chemical treatments for sanitation. Without the proper maintenance, your hot tub can turn into a breeding ground for germs. It’s important that you test out maintaining a hot tub or spa for a week to see if you have the time and patience for it.

The patient buyer is a satisfied buyer. Just because something looks good and sounds good, doesn’t mean it is right for you. The only way to make sure you made the best choice is to try it before you buy it.

Author Bio: Sylvia Rosen is an online writer who enjoys writing articles about how people can get the most for their money.
About The Shopping Mom


  1. I like it when food companies send you free samples so that you can try before you buy.

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  4. This is a pretty comprehensive list. Other things I try before I buy are skis and snowboards. Everything looks wonderful in the store. Once you get out on the slopes, some things just don’t work as well as it seems they would in the store. Rent a variety of equipment to get an idea what works for you and what doesn’t. The one thing I wish I could try before I buy is bicycles. When you get into the reaches of $1,000 bicycles, there aren’t a lot of opportunities to ‘try before you buy.’ This even less likely when you get into the stratosphere where the bicycles cost +$2000 or more. You could try to borrow one, but these bikes are pretty much custom fitted for individual riders. And, there is no way I will loan my carbon fiber mountain bike to anyone! mtdoonmeister at gmail dot com