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Why Your Online Store Needs a Size Chart

Despite the incredible rise in online shopping, many people are still hesitant to purchase online for fear that the item won’t fit. Generally, people know what size they are, but we’re all aware that sizes can vary from store-to-store (or even from product-to-product within a store!).

A size 6 dress in one store could fit very differently from a size 6 dress found at another. That’s why having a size chart that is specific to your brand is important, especially as an online store. With different fabrics and different ways a garment fits or flows, it can be difficult to tell which size you’ll like based on just photos — which is why the majority of returns for ecommerce apparel items (about 80%) are the result of a customer not being satisfied with the fit or size they chose.

Accurate sizing guides will help to make sure the buyer gets the desired fit, lowering the chance that your product will be returned. It will also result in happier customers...and happy customers are repeat customers.

Creating a comprehensive size chart can boost customer confidence, increase sales, and reduce returns — because there's nothing more frustrating for a consumer than simply hoping something will fit.

Successful Sizing: Six Components to Consider

One of two things happens when a customer doesn’t know how your product will fit — they either guess their size (and risk returning), or don’t buy it at all. Uncertainty about the fit is why many potential online customers choose to drive to a store and try on an item before purchasing. Store owners will want to pay close attention to how their sizing information is presented. Here are our top six things to consider when creating sizing guidelines for your brand.

1. Use Understandable, Brand Specific Sizing

You know your brand and fit better than anyone else, so translate that clearly into your sizing. Provide information that’s brand-specific when you create your size chart templates because sizing will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. Customers need perspective and scale when shopping online. For example, if your clothing comes in small, medium, and large, then provide comparable numerical sizes, such as sizes 8 to 10 for medium. You can also include common measurements, such as length, in either inches or centimeters. The more specific you are the better, so consider making a different size chart for different products, like dresses, tops, denim and shoes.

Not sure where to start when creating your size chart? Grab our instant download Canva template for size charts here and use your creative eye to create a one-of-a-kind size chart to help guide your customers towards purchasing the right size.

2. Include Fit Information

Alongside your size chart, it’s also important to include information about the fit of that specific product. This doesn’t need to be included in the design of your size chart, but it’s important to include it in the product’s description.

You might try adding just one line to your existing descriptions, with a one- or two-word description on how that particular product fits:

  • Fit: Oversized

  • Fit: Flowy

  • Fit: Curve Appeal

  • Fit: Super-Stretchy

3. Make Your Size Chart Stand Out

No customer wants to have to search your entire site for sizing guidelines.  Make access to your sizing information clear and easy to find. It should stand out to the customer so they don’t have to spend too much time digging for it. Don’t hide it away at the bottom. The best way to share sizing information is to include an image of the sizing chart within your product description. This will save the trouble of the customer to having to leave the product page, and will save you the risk of potentially losing the sale. Our instant download Canva template allows you to customize your size chart completely and then download as an image that can be easily added to your product descriptions.

4. Include Customer Reviews

Customer feedback is a great way to build a community and build up “social proof” so that potential customers feel more comfortable on what size to purchase. You can use Fits As Expected ratings where a customer can rate your products as running small, large or just right. This will help visitors decide whether they should order the next size up or down. Also consider allowing your customers to include photos of themselves using your products in their reviews. Your customers will be more confident about ordering when they can identify with a similar body type.

5. Model & Virtual Sizing

If you’re including photos of models in your apparel on product pages, it’s always nice to include the details about the models – their height, weight, waist size, and such for reference. If you don’t already, try using photos of live models wearing different sizes to show different fits, either on social media or the product pages. Going a step further, you can also choose to test virtual sizing tools. They can be surprisingly helpful. Here are some possibilities to investigate: Virtusize, Bold Metrics, and Tangiblee.

6. Make Sure Your Return Policy is Easily-Accessible

Although your return policy is a different part of the shopping experience, it will also affect how customers feel about making a purchase. When customers don’t know your return policy, they’re more likely to not purchase from you at all. When it comes to sizing, customers feel more comfortable making a purchase when they know for a fact they can easily return or exchange it if the size doesn’t work out as they expected. Having a flexible and clear return policy can increase customer confidence that even if they order a product that doesn’t fit quite right, they’ll be able to seamlessly get the correct size or their money back.

When creating your sizing guidelines, refer back to your return policy and make sure it clearly defines your return or exchange process. Have this readily available and visible to any customer making a purchase. 

If your return policy is less flexible, just be sure to make those guidelines clear to the customer so there is no confusion on their end. If they know what to expect up front, there will be less customer frustration when it comes to returning your products.

Next Steps

Sizing charts are a win-win for both you and your customers  — customers will be happier with their purchases and you’ll be happy with a reduced return rate. However, it will all depend on how much time and thought you put into your brand’s sizing. If you’re looking for some guidance on creating a size chart, start with our instant template: Create Your Own Size Chart Using Canva. The best part? The template is only $9  — and you’ll start to see an ROI almost immediately. Grab your template today!

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