The risk of buying low-quality standing desks from overseas

standing desks

The risk of buying low-quality standing desks from overseas

Anybody who shops online regularly knows that it can be a bit of a minefield. 

How do you know that you’re getting a product that’s quality, and how do you avoid cheap goods manufactured en-masse, using low quality materials?

The truth is, when you go with the lowest bidder, you often get what you pay for.

And that means products that:

  • Break sooner
  • Are of a poorer build quality
  • Lack essential features
  • Feel flimsy or cheap

Needless to say, you don’t want your standing desk to be any of these things!

A real example of the risk of poor-quality standing desks

We recently completed an order for a major Government organisation who learned this lesson the hard way.

Essentially, instead of going for a quality, locally made option, they opted for cheap low-quality standing desks from overseas.

After a few short months, their electric sit-stand desks were failing and motors seizing up.

They even told us of instances of one or two legs failing while the others continued to operate, making the entire table skew and leading to computer monitors falling off and breaking!

Needless to say, they weren’t happy – not only had money gone to waste, but they also had to deal with all the disruption that came with failing sit-stand desks.

Luckily, Ergomotion was able to help.

We produce standing desks in Australia, combining Aussie ingenuity and engineering with high-quality motors imported from Europe.

Now they’re much happier, and their staff are now free to enjoy all the benefits that an electric standing desk can bring into workplaces such as yours!

Spotting a low-quality standing desk

Sure, it may be cheaper upfront – however, replacing a poor or low-quality standing desk can be expensive.

Also so if you have to replace the desks in your entire workplace like the client we mentioned above had to!

Avoid that additional cost altogether by buying a quality desk right off the bat.

Just one problem: how do you spot a dodgy, cheap desk?

Red flag #1: it’s unstable

Stability is the number one factor that you should look for in buying standing desks.

We’re talking shaky legs, wobbles when you write and a general feeling of ‘flimsiness’.

Needless to say, your standing desk shouldn’t shake or wobble, regardless of whether it’s in sitting or standing mode (and more importantly, when it’s actually being raised or lowered!). 

Standing desk brackets should support the standing desk and should be strong enough to support and provide stability. Screws and glides should be perfectly fitted and aligned, while the whole construction should feel solid.

If it doesn’t, you’ll probably find yourself falling back into the trap of sitting all day – exactly the opposite of what you wanted to achieve in the first place with your height adjustable desk!

Red flag #2: loud motors 

The benefits of choosing an electric sit-stand desk during your work day are numerous.

Without a doubt the biggest one however is that you can adjust the height with the push of a button – no more need to fiddle with knobs and levers.

(Find out more about why you should choose an electric standing desk over a manual one in this blog post.)

When you hit that button, electric motors and hydraulic systems do the rest of the work, allowing you to seamlessly transition between sitting and standing.

If you ask us, this process shouldn’t only be fast – it should be quiet too!

Unfortunately, that isn’t the case when you opt for a cheap, overseas option instead of a standing desk made in Australia. 

One of the most obvious symptoms of a cheap, low-quality desk are loud and clunky motors. Not only is it annoying, but it’s a major distraction too!

At Ergomotion, we make standing desks in Australia, combining Aussie engineering and workmanship with high quality motors sourced from Europe, guaranteeing quiet operation.

Red flag #3: Slow speed adjustment

We know that you’re busy, and that you don’t want your work disrupted.

That’s why each of our standing desks is designed to adjust from standing to sitting in as little time as possible. With an Ergomotion desk, you can adjust between both modes in a matter of seconds.

Poor quality overseas standing desks on the other hand often have slow speed adjustment, taking upwards of 30 seconds (or more) to adjust the height of your desk.

Combine that with low lifting and load-bearing capacity, which can limit the amount of work you can perform using your standing desk.

Now, it’s pretty clear that you’ve bought a cheap, low-quality standing desk that may be more trouble than it’s worth.

standing desks in Australia

How to avoid low quality standing desks

So now you know what to look out for. But what can you do to avoid it?

Luckily for you, there are a couple of ways you can avoid accidentally saddling yourself with a low-quality solution like our recent client did!

Look beyond price – do your research!

Many office managers focus on the initial upfront cost of fitting out their office with standing desks.

While this is an important consideration, it isn’t the only one – think of standing desks not as another box of office paper or printer cartridges, but like buying a new printer or computer.

That means looking beyond price, and instead looking at value.

Before you decide on buying a standing desk, do your research.

In particular, you’ll want to focus on the specs such as:

  • Maximum and minimum height requirements
  • Desk width
  • Lift speed

Doing thorough research gives you an idea of what to look for a standing desk that you can compare from one product to another.

Check customer reviews as it tells highly of what customers have experienced upon buying the standing desk.

If you see a lot of complaints from customers, this is a clear red flag that you need to pay attention to.

Choose a manufacturer that provides a warranty

As with all other high-level office purchases, you should ensure that you order a product that comes with a generous warranty.

That way, on the off chance that your standing desk encounters problems, you can have them replaced at no cost, minimising the financial disruption that comes with a broken desk.

Of course, it would be better to not have to worry about your desk going haywire at all.

Luckily, a warranty can also be a sign of this too!

Not only does a warranty cover you in the event that something goes wrong with your desk (a slim chance if you do your due diligence), but it also signifies that your standing desk manufacturer is confident in their product!

For example, at Ergomotion we offer a 10-year warranty on the frame and electrics, giving you peace of mind.

Buy from a reputable company

And finally, make sure you’re buying a desk from a company that has a good reputation, and which you can trust!

There are standing desks available online from a range of manufacturers – where do you start?

We’ll tell you – you’ll want to start by looking at the manufacturer and their reputation!

First, see if you can even find a manufacturer’s name anywhere. Many cheap overseas manufacturers will release “generic” standing desks sold through resellers with no branding tied to them.

The problem is this often leaves you with no direct point of contact with the manufacturer, which can impact warranties and customer service when something goes wrong.

Needless to say, unbranded desks should be avoided altogether!

Okay, so you’ve found a desk with a name attached to it. The next thing you’ll want to do is look up the manufacturer’s website.

In addition to reviews, you’ll also want to take a look at their portfolio.

Standing desk companies will be more than happy to show off successful projects.

In particular, keep an eye out for case studies involving large businesses.

In addition to the aforementioned government agency, Ergomotion standing desks can also be found in:

  • The Royal Children’s Hospital (Melbourne)
  • The City of Kingston (Melbourne)
  • Caulfield Hospital Brain Injury Unit (Melbourne)
  • Ambulance NSW (Dubbo)

Click here to read more about our past projects.

Don’t fall for cheap, poorly made standing desks

Ergomotion makes high-quality standing desks in Australia

Don’t be like our most recent client and get stuck paying to replace an entire office worth of standing desks.

Get ahead of the problem by fitting your workplace out with high-quality, locally made solutions.

Ergomotion is in the business of improving the health and safety of individuals in business, healthcare, education and even in Government.

Ergomotion’s electric height adjustable standing desks are designed for everyone who wants to break free of their sedentary lifestyle and stand up for their health. 

Contact our ergonomics expert today on (03) 9579 1454, or click here to get in touch online.

Google Reviews


Google Reviews

Richard 02/12/21

Guy was extremely helpful and made sure I got the right desk to suit me, not just recommending the most expensive one. The desk I got was at a solid price, and was exactly what I was after. Highly recommend Ergomotion.

Ash Warshitzky 30/11/21

I purchased an electric sit-stand desk from ErgoMotion over a month ago, and hands down can say this has been the best purchase I've made for my home office and I regret not getting one sooner. Build quality and usability is fantastic, was easy to assemble, all the cable mess is hidden in the tray. Also, important to note that Guy and the team has been fantastic to deal with.

Daniel Boldt 25/11/21

Can’t recommend Ergomotion enough. Guy was an absolute pleasure to deal with. Answered all my questions promptly. I bought the Edesk with the rubberwood top and it’s amazing. Highest quality and a solid build. You can’t beat Linak tech for standing desks. Also delivery was super simple and quick.

sophii 23/11/21

Absolutely love my desk. I had been looking for MONTHS for a standing desk. Indecision was killing me, and my back, as I needed one desperately to change up my day when working from home. I was worried about the size, quality and durability, as well as warranty. All sites I found were either the wrong sizes for me, lack of warranty information, and not enough good (or not enough) reviews to be spending quite a bit of money on. I have trust issues. Thankfully I found Ergomotion - who has so many great reviews for many reasons. The owner, Guy, is very responsive and helpful. Replied to one of my questions instantly regarding colour options for the desk. I was also very happy to know that the desk is picked up/delivered assembled. Guy was very patient with my delay in picking up my desk, and was super helpful to change my order to be delivered, with a quick turn around, to accommodate me. The delivery drivers were great too! It was an easy and great experience and I'm glad I spent the money I did for a great product and supporting a local and small business.

José Mario Blandin de Chalain 19/11/21

I love my standing desk. Guy at Ergomotion was very helpful during my order, desk was ready for pick up in 2 days, fit nicely in my SUV and has been a joy to use since. Thanks Guy.

Cyril Gaillard 17/11/21

Utterly impressed with my Ergomotion desk. The all-metal frame is very sturdy and the solid wood option makes it very luxurious. Guy is very helpful and lovely to deal with.

Max Kuper 11/11/21

I got the height adjustable desk for home from Ergomotion after using it at work, and finding it to be the best of all the similar products over the years The service during ordering and installation as great as the product, very professional and tailored to my specific needs Guy goes an extra mile to address all location specific idiosyncrasies Highly recommended

Reshma Jacob 09/11/21

Amazing service . Guy was very patient and prompt and responded to all my questions ; I had many . He worked with me to ensure I was happy with my custom made desk and to top it up , my desk is amazing ! It's so refreshing to really see the care and love put in providing 1. A quality product 2. A service that stretches above and beyond . Thank you . I look forward to using my desk every day and remember how valued I was made to feel as a customer !

Tiancong Li

One of the best services I’ve ever had! Contacted Guy and he walked me through all the options and features of their desks, and just in a few days he delivered the assembled desk to my house by himself. Very professional and efficient! Thanks heaps Guy! Tim

Winston Lee 01/11/21

Bought a couple of Ergomotion's edesk standing desks (LINAK DF2) and they have been great; Very sturdy and moves up/down quietly. Guy was excellent to deal with as he is extremely knowledgeable about the product, very customer focussed, and provides great after sales support.