How to shop online

Laura Timberlake

Online shopping has opened a new world for Australia. It’s easier to get excellent quality clothes at bargain prices – and half the time the international post arrives before the Australian packages do!

Some people in Australia still view online shopping with distrust. After all, what do you do if you don’t like an item? What if it doesn’t fit?

Easy! Shop with companies who you can trust. Research. Read reviews, ask your friends, or do a Google search – the information is nearly always at your fingertips.

Consumer feedback counts. No one is going to shop at a website if it has a terrible reputation! Even Net-a-Porter was once just a company experimenting with sending gift-wrapped luxury items (except that consumers loved it and now it is a leader in its market).

So, what to look for in a good online shopping website? Try websites that offer free returns (they should offer them within 10-14 days from the delivery date).

It’s also a good idea to shop on websites that can give you an indication of size measurements (e.g. bust, waist and hips). In this instance owning a tape measure to check your size is also handy!

If you like a particular website, sign up to their newsletter. Yes, there will be the usual spam that you have to delete; but they also give you a heads up about any decent sales.

Here are some of my favourite websites to help get you started:

The Outnet (theoutnet.com)

This is like the sale version of Net-a-Porter (great brands at cheaper prices).

Yoox (yoox.com)

Items are available at up to 90 per cent off the original retail price. ‘Nuff said.

The RealReal (therealreal.com)

This is a massive online consignment store where Chanel jackets miraculously become affordable.

Now for a final tip: remember to limit your online shopping time. Apart from eating up your wallet, it’s addictive!

Laura Timberlake is a fashion and lifestyle writer who enjoys hunting down the latest trends in Melbourne to share them with the world.

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