Back to blog

Learn with Threecolts

Small group workshops to help you learn, optimize, and grow.

Learn About Coaching

A Practical Guide to Converting Asian Sizes to US Sizes

Geri Mileva
June 13, 2023
June 13, 2023
A Practical Guide to Converting Asian Sizes to US Sizes

Catering to a global customer base can significantly expand your business opportunities. However, when it comes to selling clothing, the right size markings can be pretty tricky. There are no international standards for sizing, so clothing sizes vary from country to country. If you want to turn your buyers into loyal customers, you must take the time to know the different sizing methods so you can provide them with accurate sizing and correct information.

Because it’s crucial for customer satisfaction, publishing the right size of your products should always be on point. In this comprehensive guide, we provide you with practical insights and tips on how to convert Asian sizes to US sizes and ensure a smooth shopping experience for your customers.

Who Needs to Convert Asian Sizes to US Sizes?

It is recommended for anyone who sells clothing online to know how to convert sizes from one region to another. But for individuals and businesses with transactions in other countries, converting sizes is crucial for business growth.

If you are catering mostly to buyers in the United States but are sourcing your products from China or other Asian countries, it is important to convert Asian sizes to US sizes. This allows you to provide accurate size information to your US buyers and minimize returns due to the wrong fit.

It is also very important to convert sizes if you are catering to buyers from multiple countries. Customers from different countries have diverse sizing standards and expectations. By providing size conversions for different regions, you can cater to the needs of your international customers and offer a familiar sizing system that they are accustomed to.

Why Is Size Conversion Important?

Clothing and shoes topped the list of most returned online purchases in the United States last year. Another consumer survey shows that 38% of clothes purchased online were returned because the clothes did not fit properly. This is not at all surprising considering that online buyers are unable to physically try on the items they buy. As an online seller, providing your buyers with accurate size conversion reduces the likelihood of returns. Aside from minimizing product return rates, here are other reasons why size conversion is important.

Customers expect a good fit

Customers have certain expectations when it comes to the sizing of products. When they order clothing online, they anticipate that the size they choose will fit them comfortably. By converting sizes, you can meet those expectations and provide a seamless shopping experience for your customers. This proactive approach helps build trust and loyalty with your customers.

Asian clothing generally has a smaller fitting

It is no secret that Asian clothing tends to have smaller fitting compared to Western sizes. By converting Asian sizes to US sizes, you can bridge the gap and provide accurate information to your customers. This helps them make informed decisions and avoid frustration caused by receiving products that are significantly different in size than what they expected.

Not meeting size expectations can lead to reputational damage

Size inconsistencies can negatively impact your brand reputation. If customers consistently receive products that do not fit as expected, it reflects poorly on your business. On the other hand, accurate size conversions contribute to positive customer experiences, leading to satisfied customers who are more likely to recommend your brand to others.

Handling returns, refunds, and exchanges can be costly

In 2022 alone, returns on online purchases in the United States cost almost $213 billion. If you’re selling on Amazon, you’ll have to shoulder the returns processing fee and other relevant costs. By providing accurate size information upfront, you can save time, effort, and resources associated with handling returns and exchanges.

Indeed, size conversion plays a crucial role in ensuring customer satisfaction, reducing frustrations, and building long-term relationships with customers. By meeting customer expectations, you can maintain a positive brand reputation that leads to growth.

How to Convert Asian Sizes to US Sizes

Even in Asia, there are slight variations in sizing systems across different countries. To ensure accurate size conversions, it is essential to conduct thorough research and understand the specific sizing conventions of the country where your supplier or manufacturer is based. Here are some effective methods to convert Asian sizes to US sizes:

Via supplier or manufacturer

Many suppliers that cater to international clients are familiar with the need for size conversions. When working with a supplier, inquire if they have a size conversion chart available. Most reputable suppliers will provide you with a sizing chart that shows the conversion among different countries. This chart can serve as a valuable resource in determining the appropriate size for your customers.

Through manual measurement

Another way to ensure accuracy in sizing is to request samples from your suppliers and measure the products yourself. This hands-on approach gives you a better understanding of how the product sizes correspond to US sizing standards. Then, you can provide more accurate size recommendations to your customers.

When listing your products, you can add the size chart you prepared so your buyers can easily compare Asian sizes to US sizes.

By using size conversion apps

Leverage the power of technology by using size conversion apps to assist you in converting Asian sizes to US sizes. Numerous apps are available, especially for popular eCommerce platforms like Shopify. These apps can provide instant and accurate conversions between different sizing systems. By integrating a reliable size conversion app into your online store, you can empower your customers to determine their appropriate size easily.

Converting Asian Sizes to US Sizes

There is no universally standardized conversion rate for clothing sizes. Different brands and manufacturers have their own sizing charts and systems. These also vary depending on the countries or regions the brands are located in. To give you an idea of how brands convert their sizes, here are size comparisons collated from H&M and Nike websites.

H&M Women’s Size Chart (for regular tops)

H&M Women’s Size Chart (for regular tops)

H&M Men’s Size Chart (for regular tops)

H&M Men’s Size Chart (for regular tops)

Girls’ Size Chart (for regular tops)

Girls’ Size Chart (for regular tops)

Boys’ Size Chart (for regular tops)

Boys’ Size Chart (for regular tops)

Nike Size Chart

Nike Size Chart

As you can see, sizes vary significantly from region to region. One of the best ways you can create your own size chart is by measuring your clothing products in centimeters and finding the closest match to common sizing charts.

How to Take Measurements

To ensure accurate size conversions, it is important to measure specific body parts. In this section, we will explore the key measurements for both clothing and shoes. Share this information with your buyers to help them find the right size.

Here are the key measurements for clothing:

  • Neck. Measure around the base of the neck, keeping it somewhat loose-fitting. This helps determine collar sizes for shirts and jackets.
  • Sleeve. Measure from the middle of the back of the neck to the wrist bone. This is important for determining sleeve length in shirts and jackets.
  • Chest. Measure the circumference of the chest from under the armpits. For women, measure this over the fullest part of the bust. This is vital for finding the right size for tops and jackets.
  • Waist and Hips. Measure around the narrowest part of the waistline and the fullest part of the hips. This is for selecting the correct size for pants, skirts, and dresses.
  • Inseam. Measure from the crotch area to the ankle. This determines the ideal length of pants and trousers.

For shoes, the length of the foot from the heel to the longest toe should be measured with a ruler or measuring tape. Some shoes also have measurements for width, which are taken from the widest part of the foot. Most shoe suppliers provide measurements in centimeters so suggest to your buyers to use this unit when measuring their feet.

How to Take Measurements

Best Practices in Converting Sizes

Accurate sizing information is crucial in the eCommerce landscape to minimize returns and ensure positive customer experiences. By implementing best practices in converting sizes, online sellers can enhance customer satisfaction and reduce sizing-related issues.

Use size conversion apps

Like other digital tools from the marketplace management platform Threecolts, size conversion apps are valuable tools that can streamline the buyer journey. These apps are designed to provide instant conversions between different sizing systems, including Asian and US sizes. Incorporate a reliable size conversion app into your website or mobile platform to allow customers to quickly determine their appropriate size. Ensure that the app covers a wide range of Asian sizing systems to cater to diverse customer needs.

Create a detailed size chart

Invest time in creating a comprehensive size chart that displays Asian sizes alongside their corresponding US sizes. Include relevant measurements, such as bust, waist, hips, and inseam length, as this will assist customers in finding the right fit. Ensure that the size chart is easily accessible on your website and product listings, preferably on each product page.

Provide clear size recommendations

Go the extra mile by providing specific size recommendations and guidelines for each product. In addition to a size chart, use descriptive language to explain whether a particular item tends to run small, large, or true to size. Consider including additional guidance, such as recommending customers to size up for a looser fit or size down for a more fitted look. This additional information will assist customers in making informed decisions and reduce the likelihood of incorrect size selections.

Include customer reviews and feedback

Encourage buyers to leave reviews focused on the fit and sizing of the products they purchased. This feedback provides social proof and helps future buyers determine the appropriate size conversion. This also offers insights into potential discrepancies between Asian and US sizing. Display customer reviews prominently on your website to develop trust, build credibility, and improve your seller ratings.

Collaborate with your suppliers

Maintaining a strong relationship with your Asian suppliers is crucial for obtaining accurate size information. Communicate with your suppliers to gather detailed size specifications and ask for their assistance in ensuring accurate conversions. By working closely with them, you can improve the accuracy of your size chart and reduce customer dissatisfaction due to sizing issues.

Offer size conversion assistance

Make it easy for your customers to seek size conversion assistance by providing clear contact information and customer support channels. Train your customer support team to assist customers in converting Asian sizes to US sizes effectively. This personalized service will not only help customers but also showcase your commitment to providing excellent customer support.

Consider offering multiple size options

Avoid relying solely on "free size" or "one size" clothing options, especially those from Asian countries. Because Asian sizes are typically smaller, these one-size-fits-all clothing may not fit US and European customers. Instead, offer a broader range of size options, including extended sizes or custom sizing options for Asian-made garments. Providing more size options enhances customer satisfaction and increases the likelihood of repeat business.

Stay updated on international sizing standards

Stay informed about international sizing standards and any developments in the industry, such as guidelines from the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) for apparel sizing. Adapting your size conversions to align with these standards can simplify the process for both you and your customers. By staying updated, you demonstrate your commitment to providing accurate and standardized size conversions.

Stay updated on international sizing standards

Size Conversion: Your Key to Satisfied Customers and Business Growth

As an online seller, effectively converting Asian sizes to US sizes is vital for providing a positive shopping experience for your customers. By conducting thorough research, creating detailed size charts, providing clear recommendations, leveraging customer reviews, collaborating with suppliers, and offering size conversion assistance, you can navigate the complexities of sizing conversions successfully. By prioritizing accurate size information and customer satisfaction, you will position your business for growth and success in the competitive world of eCommerce.

Learn with Threecolts

Small group workshops to help you learn, optimize, and grow.