I don’t shop a lot online. I tend to make purchases the old fashioned way — in person, with a dressing room and instant gratification. Of course, online shopping has its perks, with convenience being king. But more often than not, I usually skip online shopping in lieu of actually trying everything on personally.
Now I remember why.
Today, we’re focusing on two e-commerce purchases that didn’t quite match my expectations.
First up is the sweater — a wacky, fringed explosion of mammoth woolly fuzz. Sweaters tend to be pretty standard, so when I find one with personality, I can’t resist. I bought it from Choies, an e-commerce site I had never used before. For less than $40, the sweater seemed like an outrageous steal.
But if something seems to be god to be true, it definitely is.
I put in my order before Halloween and waited. And waited. And waited some more. Finally, after more than three weeks, I had a meltdown and started tweeting at the post office and live-chatting the Choies customer care reps.
Turns out, items shipped from Choies take nearly a MONTH to get the U.S. customers (when you include nearly a week for order processing). Yes — one month. In today’s e-commerce the typical e-commerce shopper, that seems like an eternity — compare the agonizing wait with the two-day wait for Amazon Prime, the 1-day wait for Zara or the instant gratification from Seamless.
So, what took so long? Did they send the sweater via pony express? Close. As far as I can tell, Choies shipments come via freighter, which means my shipment doesn’t set sail until an entire container ship is full.
Next up are these boots, which are made from paper-thin leather that unfolds around the ankle like a banana peel. I purchased these from Shopbop earlier this spring (which has a very reasonable shipping time — under a week).
This purchase reminds me of one of the great truths of online shopping: Do not buy shoes online. These seemed fine when I put them on at my house, but when I first wore them on the subway, I nearly toppled over, thanks to the steep instep.
I’ve managed to save them, thanks to a super-thick gel cushion. But if I had actually tried them on and walked around a store, I would have noticed the problems beforehand. And here’s the thing about shoes — once they touch pavement, you can’t return them.
Do you have any online shopping lessons to share? Let me know!