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How to find the ideal gift online

If you're anything like me the prospect of choosing a gift is something you fear. Your dilemma is that you want to come up with a gift that is astounding and original, something likely to outdo everyone else's gift ideas at the party. Ultimately we all want to prevent the socks for Christmas moment; the recipients' eager anticipation as they unwrap the gift followed by their brave faced but transparently disappointed response - "Oh…socks". True, they could be brightly coloured socks with elaborate patterns on them but, there's no getting away from the simple fact that, socks just aren't that exciting .

The underlying issue here and the reason why present buying has a tendency to make me anxious is the unspoken suggestion inherent in buying someone a not particularly inspiring gift - well, I've done my duty and bought you a gift, yes it's a book token but frankly I really don't like you enough to spend much time in deciding on anything more exciting.

Perhaps most of this is just personal insecurity on my part but the truth remains that an interesting gift that you have put some effort into choosing will always be received with appreciation. The bottom line then is what is a good gift, and where do I get one?

Much depends on who the recipient is - The key to selecting gifts which genuinely mean something is to opt for something personal, rather than generic. For precisely this reason, you should find selecting for a certain type of person a lot less effort than others, if Uncle Phillip is an aficionado of model aeroplanes, then get him a model aeroplane, it may be obvious, but he'll still appreciate it. Not everyone's like this though, there are some people, and I'm aware of this from personal experience, who seem to be bereft of interests from which to draw gift buying ideas.

If this is the case, it is important to find something that is not so obviously suited to their interests, but is different, that stands out from the crowd, something that makes the recipient feel happy. Thank heavens we now have the internet to assist us. Of course, regular surfers of the net won't need warning that there's a hell of a lot of crap out there so you need to know where you're looking.

I've no doubt that ebay is positively resplendent with thrillingly unique gift buying opportunities but its very size makes it a difficult site to just browse, it's only really of use if you know what you want. Far more beneficial to those searching for gifts are the growing number of specialist gift sites. There are many gadgety, boys' toys type sites out there - Firebox and I Want One Of Those for example along with more general gift sites like Needapresent.com or Lastminute. A lot of these sites can have a slight whiff of the old Innovations brochure about them - for less gimmicky gift suggestions I'd recommend Not On The High Street who claim to specialize in unique, birthday gifts and gift ideas and genuinely do have the sort of distinctive gifts that look like you've given the matter some serious thought. And chaps, if you're buying for the lady in your life don't forget the classic, never-fails fall-back gift � flowers. Interflora remain the go-to guys for reliable flower delivery.





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