How To Shop For Clothes Online: Ultimate Guide
Fashion e-commerce in the US is predicted to reach $207 billion in 2023. Accounting for nearly 23% of online retail, it has been a major driver of cyber shopping.
The ease of finding items, accessibility to an extensive selection from global vendors, fast and cheap shipping, customer-friendly return policies, and regular discounts have been significant contributors to the success of online fashion retail. But some shoppers are still apprehensive about purchasing their wardrobes from a virtual store. After all, when you don’t get to try on an item of clothing, you run the risk of making the wrong purchase.
But there is an art and science to shopping for clothes online. This ultimate guide will show you how to make smart purchases you won’t regret.
Identify Your Style
Body shape, height, features, and skin tone will all have a say in what works best for each individual. For example, flowy tops, flared trousers, and printed dresses will work wonders for someone with an apple-shaped body. However, for a pear-shaped individual whose lower part of the body is heavier, skinny jeans or A-line skirts with loose tops could look extremely flattering.
Similarly, those with olive or golden undertones and dark blonde or brown hair can look good in warm colors, including gold, yellow, and orange. However, cool blues and pastel shades will look amazing if you have a very dark or very light skin tone and hair.
When you know what looks best on you, you can shop online with confidence, even when you can’t try on the clothes. However, your current wardrobe might not give you the best clues to the styles you can rock. If so, visit a high-street fashion retailer and make use of their well-lit fitting rooms and full-length mirrors to determine the clothing that matches your unique features, skin tone, and shape.
Get Your Measurements Right
Size charts can vary between retailers. For example, a t-shirt labeled as “Medium” in one store could be a “Small” in another. Size guides also differ between countries. A size 4 in the US is often an 8 in the UK, 36 in France, and 9 in Japan.
Keeping up with all these distinctions and sizing standards could be confusing. Knowing your body measurements is the easiest way to ensure you purchase clothes that fit you well. Key measurements to identify include shoulders, arm length, bust, waist, hips, leg length, and inseam.
Besides displaying regular size charts, many online retailers provide a measurement guide in inches or centimeters. If it is unavailable, contact them to clarify sizes before purchasing.
Read The Item Description
Online fashion stores often provide detailed descriptions for each product they list. For example, it could include details about the fabric—an important element when determining comfort and durability.
The keywords in these descriptions also help retailers with SEO, so their items can be found easily online. This gives an additional reason for them to pay extra attention to product information.
And the more details you have, the faster you can make an informed decision. So, ensure you read item descriptions before deciding whether the product is right for you.
Check Delivery Cost And Time
Some online fashion retailers offer free delivery, while others charge a fee based on distance. Certain online stores will also provide free shipping when you spend above a certain limit. But not everyone will list delivery fees upfront together with the item price. If so, you may need to dig a little deeper to determine how much you will be charged.
Checking how long retail stores take to deliver your purchases is also critical. If you are not in a hurry, the regular shipping options will usually work out cheaper.
Read the Fine Print
Familiarize yourself with the return policy. How long is the return period? Under what circumstances can you send back the items you have purchased? Who should bear the cost of shipping? Does the retailer offer a refund or an exchange?
In addition, read the terms and conditions. If there is any ambiguity, contact the seller to clarify.
Customer reviews will give you insights into various critical information, including the quality of the material, how well the product was packaged, how soon the item arrived, the responsiveness of the seller, and whether the product description matched what the customer received. All these details will be pivotal for you to make an informed decision.
Select Reliable Stores
The e-commerce space has plenty of dishonest retailers who sell inferior items, imitate well-known brands, and carry out countless deceptive schemes to make money.
So, to ensure a safer and more positive shopping experience, you must select reliable e-commerce stores. This doesn’t mean you need to always choose reputed brands. Many small-scale retailers sell good-quality fashionable clothes. But if you are worried about shopping at a store you have not heard of before, try Amazon, Etsy, eBay, or a similar marketplace. They screen and feature a range of small- and medium-scale fashion retailers for you to browse and purchase from with the safety of buyer protection.
As for online ads and promotional emails, it is best to take a few precautionary measures. If you are unfamiliar with a brand, avoid clicking on links without checking its details first. Google the brand name to find customer reviews, news, and any other third-party brand mentions. Search for the retailer’s details on PhoneHistory to ensure the information listed is the same as what they have provided in their promotional materials.
Time Your Purchases
You are guaranteed to enjoy major discounts during certain times of the year—think about Black Friday, Boxing Day, and Cyber Monday. These are some of the biggest sales events that attract millions of shoppers to cyber stores.
In addition, some large retailers and marketplaces have their own online shopping events. Amazon Prime Day is one example. If you time these well, you can secure some phenomenal deals.
When you know the right steps to shop online, you can easily enjoy retail therapy in the comfort of your home. However, remember to shop responsibly and avoid impulsive purchases. Minding your safety is equally essential.