Economy does not lie in sparing money, but in spending it wisely.
1. Shop in a full-service children's shoe store, with your child, as much as you can.
While you can learn to use the Brannock™, and selecting shoes will get easier over time, you'll likely never match the experience of a professional children's shoe fitter. They know very well the different types of feet, and the best-fitting shoes for each type. That being said, shopping in a full-service store is ideal, but not always possible, or practical. Do it as much as you can, especially for the shoes your child will wear the most. Children's shoe retailers, especially local, independent stores battle stiff on-line and cheap competition on a daily basis. They depend on your business to stay open. If you want the store to survive, you have to shop in it. These stores sell the higher-quality shoes that are made in better factories.
2. If you need to shop without your child - it's okay.
I contradict Tip #1 to take the needs of the parent into account. Organize your shoe-shopping with the tips below and you'll be more successful shopping in-stores (and on-line) even without your child in tow. Stores can be overwhelming to adults, no less children. Expecting children to pick out shoes is unreasonable, considering the fit, style and size availability of every pair. When they need new shoes, measure their feet and select the shoes yourself. Bring the new shoes home as a surprise or reward. Chances are your child won't put up a fight. Then you can spend better quality time with your child than picking out shoes.
3. Always know your child's shoe size.
Record the size, width and date of your child's shoe purchases. Then set a reminder on your phone two months out to measure again. When you know your child's size you're able to take advantage of random sales, or that perfect pair you happen to spot in a store window or on-line. You can more confidently purchase the shoes, knowing they are the right size, with a reduced chance of needing to return them.
4. Buy a Brannock™ to have at home,
Take Care of Your Mental Health.
New research has shown that some parents are susceptible to increased depression, and not just immediately following child birth. See links below.
Forbes Article, "Intense Parenting and Depression."
Mental Health America
Accurately Measure Feet at Home