Did you pull your new t-shirt out of the mail only to see that it looks more like a potato sack? Or did that cool orange hoodie actually turn out to be an unflattering pastel shade?
Although 46 percent of US apparel sales in 2020 were from online shopping, everyone who’s bought clothes online has run into at least one of these problems. And you don’t want your newest purchases to be too expensive to return and just end up in the donation bin.
Luckily, by following a few simple tips, you can avoid these common mistakes and get clothes you’ll love and wear.
Keep reading to learn all about how to be a smart shopper and avoid these common online clothes shopping mistakes.
Only Looking at Price
When you shop online, it’s easy to filter and sort items by price. While you can find the best deals this way, it may not always be the best choice for your wardrobe.
When you only look at the price of an item, you might end up buying lots of items you don’t actually need and spending more than you thought.
For example, let’s say you only need a black t-shirt. You search for t-shirts on an online store and you find that the t-shirts with whacky patterns are all on sale. Although you don’t wear colorful patterns, you buy five of these t-shirts.
While the black t-shirt was better quality and sold for $30, you spent $50 on five t-shirts you’ll never wear.
Another mistake you can make when only looking at the price is that you end up shopping at online stores that don’t have any reviews or have a reputation for bad quality. The garment industry doesn’t regulate quality, so no matter how little you spend, it’s not worth it if the item is going to rip after one wear.
Not Doing a Price Comparison
If you have a specific item you want to buy and it’s not that cheap, make sure you do a price comparison. This could be on different sites that stock the same item, or with similar items on the same site.
Going back to our t-shirt example, you might find similar styles to what you’re looking for that could be on sale on the same website. For example, the online store could be clearing out their summer stock, and you might be able to find a similar shirt at a discount.
Another reason to do a price comparison between different stores is that one of them may be running a promotion while the other may not.
Don’t forget to check shipping charges for your country, as well as any courier or customs fees. While an item may seem cheaper at first, the cost may skyrocket if you don’t take shipping and customs into account.
Ignoring the Size Guide
Even if you are a size medium in almost every store, keep in mind that each store has its own size guide.
Not only do different brands have different sizing, but different collections from the same store can sometimes have different sizing as well. Always check the product description for any notes on fit.
Take a look at reviews as well and see if any customers have noted whether the item fits true to size.
Most online clothing stores have a separate section in their product details titled “size and fit” where they will tell you about how that individual product fits and whether it’s true to size or runs slightly large or small.
If you’re still unsure, try sending an email to customer service describing your issue and which item you want. They should be able to help you figure out which size to get.
Not Taking Your Measurements
To see what size you would be in the size guide, you need to learn how to take accurate body measurements.
When taking clothing measurements, use a flexible tape measure that measures in both inches and centimetres so that you can buy both American and European clothes. You can get flexible tape measures at your local sewing or craft store.
For men’s clothing, make sure to measure at least the neck, chest, sleeve, waist, and inseam. For women’s clothing, measure the bust, waist, hips, and inseam.
Keep your measurements on hand so that you don’t have to measure yourself again every time you look at a size guide. You can write them down on a piece of paper or on your phone’s memo pad for quick reference.
Forgetting About Fit
Fit refers to how the item is supposed to look on your body. For example, jeans can have a tight fit, a relaxed fit, or a very loose fit.
You also want to think about fit when you think about what occasion you want to wear the item for.
A loose t-shirt, for example, might be good for the gym, while a well-fitted t-shirt, like these mens fashion t-shirts from Jasper Holland, can give you a classy yet casual date-night look.
If you’re unsure about what fit to buy, take a look at what you already have in your closet and what you might need to buy.
Not Looking at the Return Policy
If you’re used to shopping in-store, you’re used to being able to return almost anything that isn’t final sale as long as you have the tags and receipt.
But this isn’t the case with online shopping. While you can usually get a refund for unworn items, you often won’t get a refund for shipping. Not only that, but you might have to pay for return shipping as well.
Especially if you have to ship the item to you from another country, make sure to give the store a call or send them an email to ask about refunds. For instance, sometimes the store will refund the customs fee, and sometimes they won’t.
Also, make sure to check with the store if they accept online shopping returns at in-store locations. This saves you the cost of paying for return shipping should your items not fit well.
Forgetting About Reviews
No matter how good an item looks on the model or on your favorite fashion gurus, it may not fit well in real life. Reviews are so important because they are an honest opinion of what real people liked and didn’t like about certain items of clothing.
Sometimes, reviewers even post a photo of them wearing the item, which helps with your choice. Some clothing websites even have a section for each reviewer to write their height, weight, and body type so you can find reviews that best apply to you.
Even if you love an item, there’s no point buying it if it has bad reviews. Make sure to look at both good and bad reviews and see if you notice any patterns.
For example, if you love the fit of a shirt and all the bad reviews are because the color is slightly off, the shirt might be a good choice for you if the color doesn’t bother you that much.
Not Checking Your Order Summary
Always check your order summary before clicking “place order.” This step often comes after you input your credit card information so that you can review your order one final time before it’s placed.
When you’re going back and forth between your cart and the store’s online catalog, it can be easy to leave things in your cart by mistake.
When you look at your order total, make sure it doesn’t look super high or much lower than you expected. If it’s high, you may have added more than one of the same item. This can happen if you were unsure of which size to get and forgot to remove one of them from your cart.
If your order total seems too low, you may have forgotten to add an item to your cart.
Don’t forget to add any applicable coupon codes to your order before you place it!
If you find a mistake right after you clicked “place order,” try calling or emailing customer service. Make sure to tell them what went wrong and if you made a mistake with the sizing. They might be able to fix the mistake before your item is shipped.
Don’t Make These Online Clothes Shopping Mistakes
Unlike in-store shopping, online clothes shopping can help you find exactly what you need, showing you all the options at the best price for your budget. Plus, you might find a new favorite item that you had never considered looking for.
We hope this article helped you to learn all about online clothes shopping mistakes to avoid. The more you practice these tips, the easier it will be to spot and avoid these common mistakes.
If you enjoyed this article, be sure to check out more blog posts from our lifestyle category.
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