Carl Virk, Director of Carlton London lists some tips to buy the accurate shoes online and avoid the unnecessary back and forth of the purchase.
* Check the size chart: One of the most crucial aspects of buying footwear online is determining the size. Therefore it is very essential to measure the foot and follow the size guide that every online shopping websites offer. There are five types of measurements you usually get to see online that is size in centimetres, UK number, US number, EU number and size in inches.
* Measurement of feet: It is of utmost importance to take the correct measurement of your feet before online shopping. It is observed mostly one foot is larger than the other, so measuring the larger foot is recommended. This way you won’t get stuck with a pair of ill-fitting, painful shoes that you won’t wear.
* Size variation with different footwear: It is imperative to measure your feet with socks which will increase the size by half an inch while buying sneaker. Likewise, when you are trying on winter boots, make sure you have thick socks that you would probably wear with the boots during winters. Whereas this logic will be different while buying other styles of footwear like heels and sandals. Socks can make a big difference in sizing.
* Opt for the safer brands: Over the time mostly people become loyal to few brands and rely on their comfort and quality. Ideally experimenting with different brands and styles is always a good idea. However, it is always better to get the look and feel of the new brand via traditional shopping route. While buying online stick to the pre-owned brands.
* Inconsistent sizing within the same brand: Most brands, especially Indian brands, do not have consistent sizing based on standard body sizes. You may fit into a size S of one style of the brand and size M of another style of the same brand. This becomes trickier online since you will engage in process of exchange and returns.
Another common thing with Indian brands (and local small vendors) is that their sizes are one size smaller than global size charts (i.e. a size M of Indian/local apparel brand is usually in line with size S of international brands). Since most buyers were initially introduced to Indian brands before the launch of international brands, they mistakenly order as per their knowledge of Indian brands and therefore end up getting a larger size than their actual requirement (And again return/exchange gets triggered). Therefore, it is crucial for one to understand the sizing algorithm of that particular brand before making a purchase. Ideally, the online platforms need to have a size chart comparison among brands.
* Conflict in sizes between the chart and actual product: The size charts published for every garment in online stores are not consistent with “actual” product size. In other words, many products have incorrect size chart as no detailed diligence is done at SKU (Product) level while uploading lakhs of products in these stores. They are usually standard guide charts for the brand and since there are 1000’s of SKUs for a given brand, you end up seeing variations in sizes and fits across SKUs for same brand.