You can’t argue with the convenience and ease of online shopping. Indeed, the popularity of shopping on your mobile is growing so fast that many of your favourite retailers now have apps that you can use to make your online shopping experience quicker and easier.
However, there are so many sites to choose from that it’s easy to become lost in the excitement of grabbing that bargain, and sometimes it can result in disappointment (this might be the extreme example). How many times have you bought a piece of clothing or shoes online only to have it arrive and realise that it doesn’t fit you? Then you have the extra cost of returning it or exchanging it, so it may just end up being stuffed at the back of your wardrobe and being a waste of money (even if it was cheap).
Below are some tips on being a savvy online shopper and how you can save money when shopping online.
Know your size – as in, really know your size so as to avoid buying the wrong size ever again. Get your bust, hips and waist measurement in both centimetres and inches. Not all labels are made the same – for example, for one jeans label I am a size 25, in another I’m a 28. Most companies will have a size or fit guide on their website, so if you’re familiar with your measurements you can use these as a pretty accurate guide as to what size will fit you best.
The same applies for shoes – I personally haven’t had much luck when buying shoes online, but if you do like to shop online for footwear know your shoe size in Australian size (which is more or less the same as US sizing), UK sizing (which can be 2 sizes less than your AU size), European sizing, as well as your foot length in centimetres. For example, I’m an Australian 6.5-7, which is a UK 4.5-5, or EU 37-37.5. My foot length is 23.5cm-24cm. Again, most websites will be a fit guide for their shoes, so having all these measurements ensures that you’ll avoid any shoe mistakes.
Know your labels – much like Canna’s tips in her capsule wardrobe video, look in your wardrobe and take stock of what brands and labels you have the most of. It’s more likely that if you buy something from these labels you’ll be happy with the fit and quality.
Just because it’s cheap doesn’t always mean it’s a good buy – it’s tempting to jump on the shopping websites and click “add to cart” to that cute $5 tank top that you may end up throwing away after a few wears. Again, think quality – it’s much better to spend a little bit more on a good quality piece of clothing that will last you years and goes with all your other items of clothing than that slogan t-shirt that you’ll probably only wear a handful of times.
Keep an inventory of your clothes handy (eg use an app) so you know what your new purchase will go with. These apps are also extremely handy so you can keep track of what you do have in your wardrobe, as well as be able to see what pieces work well together/
Don’t be afraid of ebay – while ASOS is a great one-stop shop for most of your online shopping goodness, you can grab some good buys and labels for a fraction of the cost on eBay. While the auction format does mean you have to compete with others which may push up the cost (and you may have to wait with breath baited at your computer to make sure you’re the highest bidder at the end of the auction), some items also have a Buy It Now option – of course, make sure you read the item description carefully (especially for pre-loved items) and be happy with what you’re buying or bidding on.
Don’t drink and buy – there have been countless stories of people shopping online while drunk and regretting their purchases once they arrive. Stay away from the alcohol when shopping online.