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Buy with Confidence in 2021: A Gentleman’s Guide to Buying Clothes and Shoes Online

Updated: Jul 14, 2021

There are plenty of reasons to shop online. For starters, it’s quick and no masks are required. You also don’t have to leave the comfort of your own home.

However, despite lockdown benefiting the men’s online fashion industry, some people aren’t still 100% sold by the concept due to the inability to try things on.

Interestingly, research reveals that Brits will amass £32,951 worth of unworn clothing in their wardrobes over their lifetime – primarily because of the hassle of returning items and the difficulties of choosing the right size when shopping online.

But it’s not all doom and gloom. There are some simple rules to follow when buying clothes and shoes online. Follow these and you won’t find yourself queuing up at the post office or hoarding garments in your wardrobe until you’re grey and old.

What not to buy online

When it comes to online shopping for men, there are two sides to the coin. On one side, you could just choose to avoid certain types of clothing or footwear altogether – due to the irregular and erratic nature of the sizing.

Generally speaking, pants, hats, socks, and accessories lend themselves to online shopping. Whereas a pair of jeans or a suit jacket might pose an issue.

However, the better option is to discard the ‘what not to buy naughty list’ and place a greater emphasis on the brands you can trust instead.

To identify the best men’s online shops for clothes and shoes, you should use the following section for guidance.

How to shop online: a men’s guide to online shopping in 2021

Quick takeaway points

  • Look for men’s online shops offering detailed size guides and supporting content.

  • Make sure things fit by measuring yourself properly.

  • Shop British and look for signs of quality on the online shop’s website. If you can’t find anything or the product is unusually cheap, avoid buying.

  • Use Pinterest to ensure clothes and shoes suit your type of build and style.

  • Favour online shops with free postage and returns to minimise risk.

Only shop at places with adequate size guides

Nowadays, e-commerce businesses are constantly finding ways to revolutionise the online shopping experience for men and women. You’re no longer expected to put your finger in the air and hope for the best.

In more recent times, artificial intelligence (AI) is letting shoppers try on clothes virtually. While online shops, like ours, provides a detailed shoe size guide for every style followed and detailed articles.

Make sure it fits

Once you find online shops that provide extensive size guides, use a tape to measure your favourite clothes.

For shirts and sweatshirts, lay them flat and measure:

  • Across the chest – between the bottom of each arm seam – and then double the amount.

  • The shoulders – from seam to seam in a straight line.

  • The back – from the base of the collar to the hem.

  • The sleeves – from the cuff to the shoulder seam and the seam to the centre of the collar label.

  • This will give you the perfect starting point for online shops that provide size guides.

For shoes, check out our guides on how to measure your feet properly:

  • Shoe Size Guide: Understanding the Fit of a Shoe

  • How to Measure Shoe Size – Shoe Size Guide

Jeans are a little bit harder to judge. Although our Body Shape Guide will give you a sense of what jeans will look good on you and what ones won't.

Find quality

As for the quality of the clothes or shoes, delve into the product descriptions and the company about us page. Note – if something is cheap, there’s usually a reason why.

Shop British and go independent. You’ll often find further details on the quality of the manufacturing and the materials used. If you get this right with your online shopping, you’ll find your favourite garments last a lot longer too.

Suits you sir

Another top tip is to consider how things will look on you. Men’s fashion online shops can’t afford/don’t have the time to hire a variety of models to showcase their products.

If the model doesn’t have the same look or style as you, head to Pinterest. Ideally, you should search for a celebrity or model with similar attributes – i.e. build, hair colour, skin colour – and include the type of clothing or pair of shoes you want to purchase.

So, if you’re a tall, slim and blond gentleman looking for a pair of brown Percy Strides, you could type ‘Ryan Gosling in brown Oxford shoes’. Even if Mr Gosling hasn’t sported a pair of brown Oxfords before, you’ll usually get suggested images which can give you a feel of whether something will suit you or not.

Good returns policy

While returning an item that you’ve bought online might still be a pain, you should at least look for the companies who make an active effort to soften the blow. In other words, the ones providing free delivery and returns. This goes a long way – especially when your order is heavier in weight or low in value.

Shop with confidence online at Percy Stride

If you’re looking for quality men’s Oxford shoes or accessories online, you can trust us to provide an excellent online shopping experience.

As an independent British company, we take great pride in providing personal support to any queries on sizes and delivery.

You’ll also be happy to know that our range of shoes are all specifically crafted to suit all foot shapes and sizes – including those with wide feet and flat feet. However, if you do need to return them, we offer free delivery in the UK on all products and free returns when you order through PayPal.

For more information about online shopping with Percy Stride, contact us today.

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