Considering the amount of time we spend on our feet, it’s surprising how little thought we put into buying new shoes. This may not be the case for everyone, but it would be unfair to say that only those who don’t really care are the ones who don’t put the effort in; even shoe lovers make impulsive purchases without taking the necessary steps to make sure they’re getting the best pair for their money. Below are some of the key factors you should always consider before whipping out your wallet.
Size & Comfort
The way a shoe fits your foot is vital for a number of reasons, most importantly because ill-fitting footwear can have adverse long-term effects on your feet and posture. Moreover, a shoe that doesn’t fit is likely to cause problems in the form of muscular ache or blisters, not forgetting the stress of being uncomfortable all day. When you’re shopping for shoes in a store, you can usually try before you buy, and many retailers will even measure your feet for you; however, this can be a little bit trickier if you prefer to buy online. Having your size to hand is always helpful, but you should also check to see if your website of choice has a sizing guide, as sometimes exact measurements can vary from store to store. Additionally, it’s worth remembering that different countries use different sizing scales, so you’ll need to double check before ordering, in case you end up with something far too big or small.
In terms of comfort, you should be able to gauge how a shoe performs by checking what it’s made of and, again, if you’re in a physical store you can usually take them for a walk up and down the aisle to get an idea of how they feel. Online we run into the same issue as before; however, this is where customer reviews come in. Most stores will have a feature that allows customers to give feedback on their purchases, and a browse of these reviews should give you an idea of how suitable a particular pair will be.
For many, it’s all about how a pair of shoes look, and everyone has their own unique fashion tastes when it comes to footwear, ranging from classic to contemporary to cutting-edge styles. While the more select shoe stores may have sales assistants to help you find your perfect designs, internet retailers have a more novel approach, offering hundreds of style guides and blogs to help you pick the right pair. Ultimately, you’ll only know exactly how a pair of shoes look when they’re in front of you (or on your feet), so if you’re buying from the web, stick to the sites
that offer lots of clear pictures of their products from different angles.
Unfortunately, there’s no guarantee that a pair of shoes you order from the internet is going to be the perfect fit every time, or that the style is exactly what you expected - even when buying from a physical store, a few minutes of walking around isn’t always enough to get an idea of a shoe’s fit or level of comfort. For this reason, you should always check a store’s returns policy before you buy, to make sure you can swap your shoes for more appropriate ones if they’re not ideal. The majority of stores will offer a 30-day free returns policy, and anything below this should be avoided.
A huge amount of people buy their shoes - and almost everything else - online nowadays due to the convenience of having everything delivered straight to their doorstep, but it’s good to know how to avoid hidden fees that could negate any good deals you may have found. Most reputable online retailers can help you save money on shipping by offering free delivery on orders over a certain amount, but you should always read their detailed policy, as these options don’t always apply to every item in the inventory, and international rates are known to vary.
Overall, it’s never been simpler to buy your new favorite shoes in-store or online, with thousands of styles and designs available for every occasion imaginable. As long as you do your homework first, there’s no reason you won’t find a perfect pair and save some money in the process!