Let’s be real, online shopping is probably the most convenient thing since sliced bread. And shopping for your gown is no exception! However, over the years we have come to realize that the way we shop online can be a risky endeavor when it comes to looking for your gown. Here’s a few reasons to tread with caution when it comes to online shopping:
Quality is Everything.
A wedding gown is expensive purchase. That’s why it can seem really tempting to save on the budget and just purchase a gorgeous gown from a site online. However, in most cases, if it seems too good to be true, it is. Local boutiques and stores pick up designers and lines that have lasting quality. Cheaper fabrics will feel itchy and stiff. And, many times, the poor quality is noticeable when you look at it. There’s only one way to determine that the quality of your gown is up to standard before you purchase it: try it on in a boutique.
Know What You’re Getting.
One of the most important reasons to shop through a brick-and-mortar store is that they have direct relationships with their designers. Sadly, many online sites are not reputable. They may steal images from designer websites and use them to advertise. Sometimes, this means you end up with a sad imitation of the gown you saw online, and sometimes it can even be an entirely different dress. It may work out in the end, and the gown you order could look great! But, there’s always a chance that what you’re paying for is not what you’re getting.
Get help from the Pros.
Online shopping for casual every day clothing can be super convenient. Not least of all, because you know what looks good on you and what you like. When it comes to wedding gowns, it may be a different story. Since we don’t ever get a chance to wear dresses like these in our every day life, starting a wedding gown search by yourself can be overwhelming. However, having a consultation with a private stylist will help you know the ins and outs of your wedding style. Not only will they help you find your style, it’s their job to make this process easy and stress-free for you! From helping with sizing, making suggestions for accessories, to guiding you through each step of the wedding gown process, your consultant will make sure you’re being taken care of.
Is it legit?
There are many red flags to look for if you’re planning on buying online. After all, there are a lot of sites that have a great reputation. But, there are also plenty that do not. So, here’s a few things to look for when shopping online:
Does the site list easy and real contact information? Things like a phone number, a physical address (that leads to an actual building), and email address mean that if you buy a gown from them and something goes wrong, they can be contacted about it. Even better, if they have a brick and mortar location that runs the site and can be visited to shop for gowns.
Terms and Conditions:
Do they have a return policy? An “about” section on their site? They should have clear terms and conditions and seem like a fleshed out business. A lack of available information is a sign they might be a scam.
Real Images and Reviews:
This one is a biggie, and it can be hard to notice. Many times, the images on a fake site will be taken from legitimate designers. A real designer will have continuity between all the photos from a collection.
The screenshot below is a perfect example of things to look for on a fake site. First, None of the images look cohesive. Some appear to come from actual brides wearing gowns, others look like stock photos from designers. Some of these images were most likely taken off an Instagram account, others taken from independent designers who likely have no idea their dress is being counterfeited on this site. Many are very low resolution and appear blurry.
The other fake thing to look for is in the reviews section of the site. Some sites will create fake review accounts to make it seem like they have more positive reviews than negative. Be on the lookout multiple reviews that repeat the same phrases over and over again, or multiple reviews that have poor grammatical mistakes. Also, if the site has owner responses to reviews, check to see that the responses are in correct formatting and are more than just the generic response.
The Bottom Line.
The bottom line of online shopping is: use common sense. Don’t get taken advantage of by something that seems too good to be true. If you’ve got more questions about the gown buying process, feel free to contact us. Or, if you’re wanting to start your gown buying process, set up an appointment to come try on gowns with us!