Buying sneakers online

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Jorpho
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Buying sneakers online

Postby Jorpho » Mon Feb 23, 2009 2:41 am UTC

One of my pet peeves is that after comfortably wearing a particular set of comfortable sneakers for a few months, I can't just walk into the store where I bought them and buy a brand new pair exactly the same as the old ones. No, models get discontinued, and I have to go through the whole rigmarole of trying on a whole bunch of other shoes and hoping that I'll find something I like. This is one of those things that would change if I was running things, dammit.

But I've been told that not only is it possible to buy last season's sneakers online, but they also tend to be extremely cheap. I want to know more about this. Has anyone managed this feat? My shoes do apparently have model numbers on them, but searching for them doesn't seem to accomplish much.

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kgirlfae
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Re: Buying sneakers online

Postby kgirlfae » Mon Feb 23, 2009 3:42 am UTC

I would recommend seeing if a number ties into a name. I work for clarks shoes, and while all of our shoes have a 5 digit "serial number" that identifies them in our computer, most websites prefer to call our shoe the "Kosmo" rather than "75939" It works better from a marketing/branding stand point.

The easiest way to accomplish this would be to go to the store with their style number and ask them what the name of that shoe is. Most computers will keep the SKU's in the system for a long while.

From there you want to do a google search for the name of the shoe, and I really recommend zappos.com for their customer service/shipping options. But it will be hard without the name of the shoe.

Alternatively, try calling the company directly, using a general customer service line rather than going to the stores. Most of the time they'll be more helpful (I quite honestly can say that most shoe store clerks will give you crap for service when they know you're not buying from them).

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gerb
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Re: Buying sneakers online

Postby gerb » Mon Feb 23, 2009 4:26 am UTC

Wow. I don't know why I never thought of that before. I found an awesome pair of really comfortable shoes a while ago. Now I can see my socks where I shouldn't be able to but can't bring myself to stop wearing them...
That'd be neat if I could track them down online. :-)
Should I go to the shoe store's site or try the zappos place first?
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kgirlfae
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Re: Buying sneakers online

Postby kgirlfae » Mon Feb 23, 2009 5:31 am UTC

Many shoe stores (mine included) are run by Zappos. I would recommend the manufacturer's website if you're looking for the name of the shoe though.

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Delass
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Re: Buying sneakers online

Postby Delass » Mon Feb 23, 2009 6:56 am UTC

some websites, like shoes.com (I got it from a quick google search, I cant comment on customer service/reliability or anything) have search/sort by brand name. I found mine pretty quickly.

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Verysillyman
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Re: Buying sneakers online

Postby Verysillyman » Tue Feb 24, 2009 7:54 am UTC

Jorpho wrote:But I've been told that not only is it possible to buy last season's sneakers online, but they also tend to be extremely cheap. I want to know more about this. Has anyone managed this feet? My shoes do apparently have model numbers on them, but searching for them doesn't seem to accomplish much.


Fixed?

Mr.RobLikesBrunch
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Re: Buying sneakers online

Postby Mr.RobLikesBrunch » Tue Feb 24, 2009 10:13 am UTC

I buy sneakers online all the time...however, I don't really get what the dilemma is here?

I don't really care what my shoes look like, as long as they're comfortable, so I just buy a similar pair of Asics every time.

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kgirlfae
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Re: Buying sneakers online

Postby kgirlfae » Tue Feb 24, 2009 6:34 pm UTC

Mr.RobLikesBrunch wrote:I don't really get what the dilemma is here?
As a shoe store employee I'll tell ya, people get really attached to their particular model of shoe.

This is usually due to the fact that people who get attached tend to have very difficult to fit feet. Either they're very sensitive to rubbing, they have bunions/bone spurs/wide feet/narrow feet, they're between sizes, have one foot larger than the other, etc. So when they find a shoe that works for them they don't want any other shoe ever again.

The difficulty with that line of thinking is that shoe styles change every 6 months for women, every 6-12 months for men. So unless you have the foresight to buy multiple pairs ahead of time, odds are in 2-3 years when you walk into the store looking for the exact same shoe, all you'll get is a sales associate who probably wasn't even working there when that style was sold who will say "oh well, too damn bad, we don't carry those any more".

As a sales associate, I can tell you that this is the most annoying thing of all - usually the person will then chew me out about the fact that we no longer carry this perfect shoe, and how DARE we discontinue it? I'm sorry, not my fault, don't yell at me... blah blah blah. Thus was born the wonderful tool that is the internet, and if it is available that's where you'll find it. To be honest though, not very many sites specialize in "Hard to find shoes that were discontinued 4-5 years ago". So what you're probably going to find is the handful of sites that over ordered that style and still happen to have a few lying around. The further away from the date the shoe was discontinued you get, the less likely it is that you'll find them.

The only real solution is to buy multiple pairs when you find a style that works. No one ever believes me when I say this (Because clearly I'm just trying to sell them more shoes and make more money), but really - it's the only solution. I have 2 styles that I love from Clarks, and I have 4 pairs of each in my closet. My husband has a pair of sandals that we've brought back every season so far, but just we keep two pairs of "back up" for him, just of the off chance that we stop carrying them.

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Jorpho
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Re: Buying sneakers online

Postby Jorpho » Fri Feb 27, 2009 2:16 pm UTC

Hm. Closer examination reveals that the number I really need is printed on my receipt. (Of course I keep my receipts for shoes I bought six months ago. Don't you?) And oddly enough, nowhere on the actual shoe is this number to be found!


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