Shoes are a necessity, but they don’t have to break the bank. Whether you are shopping for athletic shoes, dress shoes, sandals, or boots, you can save money at the shoe store by following these five basic shoe shopping tips.
1. Buy Quality Shoes
Discount shoe stores that sell off-brand shoes may seem like a great way to save money and still buy a lot of shoes. Until you bring the shoes home and wear them for awhile. Poor quality shoes tend to wear out more quickly and they can be bad for your feet.
If a ten dollar pair of shoes fall apart or hurt your feet, you’ll likely throw them out (or leave them in the back of your closet) and head back to the shoe store. Do that often enough and your cheap shoes start making a big dent in your wallet.
You don’t have to pay $300 for a pair of designer shoes, but you should think of shoe shopping as an investment. Research shoe brands by looking them up online and getting recommendations from friends. You will save money in the long run if you find shoe brands that are known for their good construction as much as for their style.
2. Think Timeless, Not Trendy
Trends in shoes come and go, but the basic shoe forms stay the same. While shoe shopping, it may be tempting to buy that wacky pair of fluorescent pink hi-top pumps. Ask yourself how they will look outside of the shoe store, and how long it will be before they are out of style.
Shoes can be a form of expression and it’s fine to buy shoes that match your personality. But a great pair of shoes will match your wardrobe as well. Think about the clothes in your closet when you are shoe shopping. How many outfits will the shoes match? How often will you really wear them?
Having a few quality shoe basics instead of several one-outfit shoes will save you money. Search shoe stores for timeless styles like Mary Janes, ballet flats, slingback pumps, and wedge sandals. They will always be in fashion.
3. Shop at Warehouse-Style and Outlet Shoe Stores
Save money by opting for warehouse style shoe stores over high-end department stores. If a salesman has to fetch shoes in your size from the backroom, you’re paying for that service. Warehouse style shoe stores keep their inventory right on the floor. They often sell the same brand name shoes for less than most department stores.
Warehouse style shoe stores often have customer savings clubs as well. Shoe shopping today lets you save money on the shoes you will buy in the future. Joining a warehouse’s mailing (or emailing) list can let you know when they are having sales, too.
If you live near an outlet store, this may be a great place to save money by buying quality brand name shoes at a reasonable price. Outlet stores may carry the overstock from their regular store counterparts and sell it at a reduced price.
4. Buy at the End of the Season
When summer rolls around, you may need a new pair of sandals. However, you would have paid a lot less for them if you’d bought them the previous fall. Always check out a shoe store’s end of season clearance sales. Remember to think timeless over trendy while shoe shopping, and you may be able to find a great pair of seasonal shoes at a fraction of their original cost.
5. Take Care of Your Shoes
Save money by making your shoes last longer. When they aren’t in use, store shoes in their original boxes. You can also buy clear plastic shoe storage boxes. This keeps them safe and dust free. You should also weatherproof and polish leather shoes and boots as needed. Shoe sprays and polishes are available at most shoe stores.
Just as cars need good tires to perform at their best, people need well-made shoes to keep them moving in top form. With just a little planning, you can buy quality shoes at discounted prices.