If the concept is new to you, the prospect of online shopping for clothing can be overwhelming, stressful and intimidating.
Questions like; where do I buy from, what is the sizing like, what happens if I don’t like the item and can I trust the store with my credit card details are all very real and valid concerns.
As a stylist, and owner of my own online jewellery store, (my jewellery line is ilyas honey jewellery) and all around fashion loving girl, I would like to think I know a fair bit about online shopping.
I would almost consider myself to be a seasoned professional, but it has taken me a while to get to this point. I’ve placed many orders, had some disappointments and many more successes in my online shopping journey of discovery to get to this point.
Below are a list of my tips for success when it comes to becoming a confident online shopper…I hope that by sharing these with you, you can skip straight past entry level and become an expert online shopper yourself.
Create an account and wish list.
I think one of the best things about online stores is the abundance of choice available at just a click. This choice can also be daunting. I find the best way around this is to create an online account, and save (or wish list) items.
Most online stores will save your items for anywhere between 30-60 days, so there is no pressure to make a decision – and you will be less likely to fall into the impulse purchase trap.
You can add or remove items from your wish list at your leisure and another perk is you will be able to see if an item you have your eye on goes on sale, or is low in stock.
Read any product descriptions, look at all the photos provided, watch any videos and read other customer reviews.
Consider things like fabrics used, care instructions and sizing. The more information you can gather here the better informed you will be to make a purchase decision.
If you aren’t sure about sizing order more than one size.
Australian clothing sizing in general is so inconsistent, it can be a real struggle to get it right first time, so my advice is that if cash flow permits, order more than one size of the item you are looking at.
If you do this the first couple of times you shop at a new online store you will quickly learn how they size their garments and what size you are, making it easier to to shop there in future. Also, most websites will offer flat rate return shipping (if not free return shipping), so it doesn’t cost any more to send back 1 or 5 items. Don’t forget that finding the perfect item should always be about the right fit, not about the number on a garment.
Read and understand the return policy for the site you are shopping on and return any unwanted items within the time frame.
Each store will have different rules around returns and the issue of refund so make sure you are clear about how long you have to return unwanted items. Keeping an item you know doesn’t suit you and you no intention of wearing is like flushing money down the loo.
Don’t be discouraged.
If something arrives and it isn’t as you expected, or doesn’t suit you, send it back and try again. We have all seen those “expectation vs reality meme” fail moments. Consider why the item didn’t work and chalk it up to learning.
At the end of the day, online shopping isn’t for everyone but it’s nice to have the option there if you so wish. And you can do it whilst on your couch, in your pyjamas sipping wine.
Outfit snap of me wearing a bunch of online shopping success stories.
Jacket, dress, shoes and bag all purchased online.