It’s never been easier to build a personal wardrobe, thanks to online shopping. But if you’ve been slow to get into the swing of things, or have been frustrated by your experiences, don’t worry. Here’s how to shop online like a pro and love it!
1. Know What You Have In Your Wardrobe Inventory
Whether you are building your capsule wardrobe or enjoy browsing until something catches your eye, it’s important to know what you already have. The last thing you want is a bunch of clutter or doubling up on something already in your closet.
2. Set Your Budget
It’s all too easy to hit “add to cart” and “buy” without thinking about your budget, so it’s essential to know how much you have to spend before starting your browsing session! Whether you have a big budget for many pieces or just a few dollars for one piece, know your budget and stick to it!
You’ll also want to factor in shipping costs and any coupon codes. Coupon codes can be found at www.joinhoney.com It’s a site that scours the internet for all kinds of great savings free to you. Also, most websites have a sale section or a sister retail website for sale merchandise like Nordstrom Rack and Saks Off 5th.
3. Get the Right Size
Fit is the trickiest part of shopping online versus in-store. Without the luxury of being able to try things on, you have to work a little harder to get the proper size.
One thing that helps is to take your basic body measurements before you begin shopping. I’ve got mine written down, and I keep them handy beside my computer. The challenge is that each brand has their own sizing, so it’s good to keep notes about this too. Reading their fit notes for an item can also really help. Some sites will list the height of the model. If you’re short, remember everything will be a little longer, and if you are taller, everything will be shorter.
If you are in doubt, you can always order two sizes depending on the return policy.
4. Review Return Policies
Of course, when you shop online, there will always be some outfits that don’t work out. Understanding the company’s return policies is key.
Do they pay for return shipping, or is that something you’re responsible for? Are there any restocking fees? Do they have a physical location you can return items?
Please don’t assume anything regarding the return policies, as they are set by each company and can vary! One of the reasons I like Nordstrom and Amazon is they have free shipping and returns!
Also, remember it takes a lot longer to get money credited back to a debit card than a credit card.
5. Read Product Descriptions Thoroughly
Understanding what you are buying will go a long way toward being satisfied with what you order. Be sure to read about fabric and fit. Often brands will let you know if something fits large or small or if you have to size up. Spanx.com is a good example of that. You can also use the information to determine if there is any shrinkage or special washing instructions you need to factor in. I find customer reviews are excellent when I’m on the fence about something.
6. Do Some Research on the Websites and Their Products
Online shopping is an open field for scammers, so be careful about giving your card information before you know if the website and products are legit. You will also want to double-check the security of your connection before processing any payments.
Look around and check if the website’s spelling is correct, a good clue to it’s legitimacy. There should also be some reviews from customers and I always like to google the company too. I type in the name of the “company” and then “scam” and see what comes up.
7. Compare Prices
One of the great advantages of online shopping is comparing prices without driving from store to store. You can keep one website up while opening up a new tab and checking out a competitor to find the best price for the product.
This is another place you will want to watch for scams, as some websites out there look like they’re selling you the same product at a lower price point but they’re just trying to take you money. If the price differs from the main store’s brand, that it typically a red flag.
8. Visualize Yourself in the Clothes
Most people have certain styles they are more comfortable in are their favorite thing to grab when deciding what to wear each day. Before making a purchase, try to visualize yourself in the clothes you are thinking about adding to your wardrobe. How do you think it will feel when it’s on? What do you already have that would complement it? Is it something you picture yourself reaching for frequently?
If you are having trouble deciding what you think would fit your body best, try out one of our favorite tips by using My Favorite Stylist to help you understand what works with your body type instead of against it.
9. Keep Notes of Your Favorite Websites and Styles
Save yourself a lot of time in the future by keeping notes on your favorite websites and styles. Since you have already completed the research once, it will save you a lot of time when looking for another purchase.
Take notes if the size chart and description of products were accurate, ease of any returns, and any customer service pros and cons, are all great to keep for future reference.
10. Leave a Review
After completing a purchase and taking notes, leave a review to help others going forward. You never want to be rude, but you can always be honest, especially if a review brought you to the website and played a part in your purchase.
Now that you have all of the best tips and information to start shopping online like a pro, we hope you have the confidence to get to shopping and love it!
Were these tips helpful? Do you have more to add to help others learn to love shopping online? Let us know! I’d love to hear from you!