Everybody wants to save money and make smart purchasing decisions. Everybody wants to save time and reduce the frustration.
Do you want to know my best practices when it comes to shopping for clothing online?
Great! I'm about to share them to you now so stay right there…
1. Know what you are looking for
You need to have a list.
You need to know what should be in your core wardrobe.
You should probably be subscribing to a number of men's style blogs online.
A lot of them give you tips and tricks. They give you insights as to what should be in every man's wardrobe.
But in addition, you should pay these blogs a visit as well:
These blogs help you in building up your own list of what should be in your core wardrobe.
The guys on my Style System know I already put that list together for them so let me go ahead and move on to the next one.
For each piece of clothing, you should have an idea of what you're willing to spend. Let's take the suit. Every man should have a well-fitted suit in his wardrobe. So let's say you're graduating from a university and about to get your Masters Degree in Economics.
You're doing your dissertation and you're about to start interviewing with a lot of consulting companies, banks, maybe some big companies. You need to budget probably at least $500 for a good suit.
For some of you, it might include alterations in the shoes and the shirt, but for those of you that are looking at actually large, very high-end positions.
Let's say you're graduating from GW or maybe Stanford or UCLA, you need to be thinking to yourself,
“Hey, I just spent $100,000 on my education, if not more, and I probably should spend at least $500 to maybe even closer to $1000 in this interview outfit because I want to spend at least a couple hundred dollars to a few hundred dollars on a pair of shoes, which I'm going to be able to use into the job.”
In addition, this suit isn't just going to be for the interview.
You want a suit that's timeless and classic. You need to realize that a suit is something that is worth spending a little bit of extra money for because this is something that you're just going to get a lot of use. So for the suit, let's say you put $500. Again, you know what you're looking for and that you've already budgeted for it.
3. Identifying Quality
One of the easiest ways to identify quality when you're shopping online is to stick with a brand who's known for quality. Let's take suits again. Brooks Brothers. But let's say you're looking for some casual wear. You're looking for something that is going to be more of a weekend wear or stuff that you can wear out to meet some friends.
And if you run into a potential client, you're not going to feel embarrassed about the way you dress. In that case, let's take a company like Timberland. They make some pretty good casual wear.
Or let's say you're going to be looking at a pair of jeans and you want to maybe look at Levi's. Levi's actually makes a lot of great casual wear. I'm a big fan of their trucker jacket. Basically, things like this go back to point one which is know what you're looking for then budget for it and then identify quality.
And one of the easiest ways is to go with brands. Let's say you see something that looks like a great deal, but you don't know the brand. You don't know much about them. Then look for small little details.
Let's take a dress shirt. Look for mother of pearl buttons. Look for removable collar stays. Things like this are going to signify quality. Oftentimes though, you're going to have to look at what people are saying online and perhaps even try to go to a local mall or store and find the brand so that you can examine it in person.
4. Focusing on Fit
This used to actually be really hard on the web. Vendors just didn't reveal much about the actual size of clothing. A lot of times, they are actually now giving the exact dimensions and the quality. But in order to understand what's going to fit you, you should actually know your personal measurements.
In addition, you should measure the clothing in your wardrobe which you're most comfortable wearing. I know most of you probably aren't going to do it, but if you do it, it will save you a lot of time and frustration when you're shopping online.
5. Comparing Price
I didn't put this as number one because I personally believe that price isn't the most important thing when you're shopping online.
6. Return Policy
You should be thinking about the company that you're working with and think about other things like do they have a good return policy.
I would rather spend more with a company that has a great return policy than try to save money with another company I've never heard of who has a horrible return policy and ends up ripping me off.
7. Shipping Costs
I'm a big fan of Amazon and I use Amazon Prime because I pay like $80 for the entire year and I get everything to date to me. And if I have any issues, I can immediately ship it right back at no cost. Things like that are important.
Some companies have a final sale that means they don't take anything back. So the return policy is nil and other companies will say on the shipping cost that you're going to have to pay $10 to get it delivered.
And if it doesn't fit, you've got to pay the $10 to ship it back, so you could be out 20 bucks if you take a high risk and don't understand if it's good quality or you don't focus on the fit. Hence, pay attention to all these things. Otherwise, you're going to have a lot of frustration when you're shopping online.
8. Sales & Discount Codes
Sales happen pretty quick online. There's a great website called dappered.com. They let you know when a lot of sales are happening across the web. You could also set up Google alerts and a few other things to kind of monitor when companies are having sales. Discount codes, you should do a quick search whenever you're checking out.
9. Buyer Protection
Do not use a debit card when purchasing online. Because if you want to get your money back, you're going to find that the actual money has left the bank. Credit cards on the other hand, are very useful especially a company called American Express.
I know a lot of you guys outside the US that don't have access to American Express but still are able to find a credit card that has a good protection policy. PayPal actually has a pretty good protection policy.
I use PayPal quite a bit and what you can do is if you have a problem with the company, you go and you talk to the credit card company and all of a sudden, that company has a problem.
It's like having a big bodyguard behind you and they come in and in a sense, they're not going to simply believe you.
They actually just open let's say a dispute, but the thing is for most companies, they don't want to deal with this. They would rather get you your money back quickly than have a black eye with the credit card company.
So there you have it. We hit these nine points which you can go back and read them again.