The Smart Way of Shoe Shopping Online

I absolutely love shoes. I’m pretty sure I’ve collected more than 400 pairs in the past 5 or 6 years, and the several overflowing closets in my house bare witness. I’m quite certain that if I go to a psychiatrist I might get slapped with a SAD diagnosis- shoe addiction disorder (OK, ok, I made that last one up…). All my friends know that if I say I’m out for a walk in the city, it can only mean one thing – hopping from shoe store to shoe store like a bee in a flower field. Same goes for my time  online – I’d say maybe up to 10% of my time on the internet is spent on checking out shoes.

Hi everybody, my name is “Abby” and I’m a shoeshoppaholic! (“Hi Abby”)

Well, the good thing about spending a lot of time on shopping (besides getting all these gorgeous shoes of course) is that you get to learn a trick or two when it comes to buying a pair of shoes.


I love doing it, but it can also be a pretty aggravating experience sometimes. The most common problem by far is figuring out which shoe size to order, because obviously you can’t just slip into a pair over the internet to try them out.

I don’t want to remember how many times I had to return shoes that didn’t quite fit even if I was pretty confident they would. To be fair to myself, though, I can’t say that shops online are too preoccupied with assisting their customers in selecting the right shoe size.

They’ll usually just slap a “one-chart-fits-all” size chart for all the different brands they have in store even if they know full well that most footwear brands, and even styles from the same brand, can vary quite a bit (sometimes by a couple of sizes or more) from both the accepted standard and each other.

This not very well known fact makes the use of a single generic chart misleading and often counter-productive, and as a result many frustrated customers are forced to wait longer for their shoes and pay for returns that could have been avoided.

I’ve often wondered why big online stores like Zappos can’t invest a few bucks to compile shoe size and conversion charts for each brand they sell? It would very likely save them A LOT of money in unnecessary shipping and operational expenses, not to mention having happier customers… Win-win if you ask me, and who in their right mind wouldn’t want that?

Well, since most of these stores don’t seem to agree with me, I’ve found the next best thing – a website that does just that – it offers shoe size charts for many popular brands. I use it all the time and I’m sure it has saved me a lot of time and money, not to mention frustration. I don’t know about you, but dealing with returns and customer service is not my idea of good times.

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I do need to warn you that things are still not perfect, because as I already mentioned two different styles of the same brand can still vary in sizing. This is still a problem and I got burned a few times, but my guess is that this is as good as things will ever get. I just don’t see how anyone can put together charts for each and every style and brand out there. Factor in that the same style can also vary in sizing over different years, and it becomes pretty clear that hoping to ever get it 100% right is just a pipe dream.

I guess we’ll just have to be happy the with the brand charts. They are still a big step up from the current state of affairs… So if you ever buy shoes on the internet, take advice from a seasoned professional and look up the brand size chart before you order, you won’t regret it.

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