Thursday, 25 June 2009

The problem with clothes sizes and the rise in obesity rant

I thought I’d have a quick rant about the problem with sizing when it comes to selling clothes…

As you’d expect, being a small independent company, my clothes sizing differs slightly from all the massive chain stores in the UK. In fact I’m sure even the big stores all differ somewhat in the measurements they would consider to be each size. However people-customers seem oblivious to this fact and so when they buy from me, they ignore the measurements that come with the stated size and just go with whatever size they consider themselves to be in the mainstream stores.

And then there’s the sensitive issue of the rise in obesity and the possibility that customers might see my sizing guide as not very generous compared to other guides. And they might not want to buy the size that fits their measurements just because it is bigger than the size they usually fit because this will make them feel bad about themselves.

This causes massive problems for me because I absolutely cannot afford to be handing out refunds or exchanges every which way. It just loses me money. Yes, even exchanges because even though the customer only ends up with one item, I have to shed out twice the amount of money for the materials and not to mention the time! Then there’s always the question of how soon someone will come along and want to buy the original item so that I can make up the money lost.

This is the biggest stressor in my line of work, because while I can’t afford to let the customers walk all over me and allow myself to lose money for their mistake, I’m too honest a person to just keep their money and say words to the effect of "tough luck, choose your sizing more carefully next time." And that’s terrible custom, I want them to come back to me, I don’t want them to feel ripped off or scammed out of their money. Because that’s not what I’m trying to do at all!

I just don’t know what to do. This has been an issue for me right from the very start. The biggest problem is that most people don’t have a handy tape measure ready for measuring before they shop for clothes, most people are unaware of their measurements and so they go with what they know and what they know is their big chain stores, their standard size in those stores and the fact that those stores can more than afford to offer a refund or exchange system.

1 comment:

julietk said...

I have looked at your website you have a size comparison chart, but some people are just as you say inclined to believe they will fit a smaller size and will order willy nilly. Maybe you could have a clause stating it is your customers reponsibilty to order the correct size and in cases of complete denial you will not refund LOL
Would you believe the word verification code is bumspring!! sometimes these codes crack me up.
sorry I digress. Good luck with your sales anyway. Juliet