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It's important for anyone to try on shoes before buying them, but it is especially so with boys' shoes.

Since a boy's feet grow so quickly, and sizes vary from brand to brand, it's difficult to know what size your child needs at any given time.

Add to that the importance of comfort; keeping up with your child's changing lifestyle and activities; and making sure the shoes are cool enough to pass muster this month, finding shoe that fit your child's feet and needs is an ever-changing event.

Boys' Shoes Online

For those reasons, I used to think that buying children's shoes online was not the best idea. But then it occurred to me that with the exception of frequent size changes, all those same arguments could be made against adults buying shoes online -- yet, more and more, people are turning to the web for their footwear needs.

In addition to having a larger selection of brands and sizes than what is available in most local shoe stores, online shoe stores also offer a more convenient way of shopping for shoes.

And since many of them offer free or easy returns, ordering shoes for growing feet may not be as difficult as one would expect. So, why shouldn't shopping for boys' shoes be as simple as shopping for adult footwear? Especially when shopping for boys' shoes can be such a nightmare for many parents.

I can now see how the advantages may outweigh the disadvantages, but due to the sizing issue, I still think parents should proceed with caution when shopping for on the web for children's shoes.

Shopping for boys' shoes online is essentially the same as shopping for adult footwear, or anything else for that matter -- there are a few precautions that should be taken.

Here are some things that you should check before shopping with any online retailer.

Shipping Policies

Need the shoes in a hurry? Be sure to check the site's shipping policies to see how long it will be before you receive your delivery. Also pay particular attention to whether or not the item, color and size you want is in stock -- it's sometimes easy to miss text indicating that an item is on backorder, or being pre-ordered.

Shipping Prices

Several online shoe stores offer free shipping, but it should never be taken for granted. Check the site's shipping prices and methods to find out whether their prices are really as good as they look. While you can find some great deals online, if shipping adds too much to the price, you may be better off to find the item locally.

Return Policies

Even the easiest return process can still be a hassle. Before buying from any site, make sure that you can return the shoes, and find out how long you have to do so. Also verify who pays for return shipping (some sites include a free return label), what shipping method can be used, and whether or not you'll be issued a full refund or a store credit. Some sites have different policies on sale items than they do on regularly priced items, so it's also worth looking into what items are eligible to be returned.

Customer Service

My favorite online shoe stores are the ones with the best customer service. If it's the first time you're ordering from a site, check for a customer service email address, or better yet a phone number, so that any concerns you have can be answered by an actual person. While it's best to check online for policies before calling with all of your questions, you'll want to know that should any issues arise, someone will be available to handle them quickly.

Need info on our store policies? Just choose one of the following for all the info.

The Rebel Without a Shoe Store Shipping Policies

The Rebel Without a Shoe Store Privacy Policy

The Rebel Without a Shoe Store Return Policies