Online shopping has never been more popular or more important. The brick-and-mortar retail stores I grew up with are slowly disappearing, and I’m not complaining about it, because honestly, shopping in my underwear without being arrested is great.

But there is one major disadvantage to not being in the physical place; you can’t see and hold the thing you’re buying in person. You can look at pictures representing what you’re ostensibly ordering, but you can’t check it out to be sure until you’ve already paid your money and it shows up on your doorstep. Usually the result is mild inconvenience, but sometimes its hilarity, like these great examples of online shopping expectation vs. reality.

12. The reality stones

Said it came with ten large stones. from ExpectationVsReality

11. Faux Faux Fox

They better give me a refund from ExpectationVsReality

10. More scruff than fluff

I’ve brushed its fur for 10 minutes from ExpectationVsReality

9. At least you tried

Expectation vs. Reality after a 6-month backorder from West Elm. from ExpectationVsReality

8. Alice in diner-server land

Children’s party entertainer (Alice in Wonderland) from ExpectationVsReality

7. Congratulations?

I just won this clock from ExpectationVsReality

6. Mirror, mirror, on the key chain…

Wow. The wall will be nice ? from ExpectationVsReality

5. If at first you don’t success, cardigan

It’s.. not even a cardigan ?? from ExpectationVsReality

4. Deady bear

It didn’t come with nearly enough thread, but this is possibly entirely my fault. from ExpectationVsReality

3. Feeds a family of -1

Bread for scale from ExpectationVsReality

2. Is this a magic trick?

Tricked by the packaging of my moisturizing cream from assholedesign

1. Plastic is a synonym for rugged, right?

Colleague bought a Harley and wanted some boots. He was impressed with the $39 price tag online. Not so much when they arrived. from ExpectationVsReality

So just remember the golden rule of online shopping: before you click buy, check the return policy.

Have you ever run into a situation like this?

Tell us about it in the comments.