Help

Frequently Asked Questions:

Questions from Sellers

Questions from Buyers

Questions from Retailers

General Questions: Accounts, Passwords, Company Information

Protecting Yourself from Online Fraud





Questions from Sellers:

Getting Started


Selling Items


How to create the best listing


Negotiating 101


Getting Started

Q. What do I need to get started?

Selling your items on SmartBride Boutique is easy! All you need to do is sign up for a free account, log in, then click on the SELL button in the top left corner of the page.

Q. Why do I have to register to list an item?

At SmartBride Boutique, we understand that weddings are a very important and personal event. In an attempt to deter poor quality, spam and/or fraudulent listings, sellers are required to register and validate their email addresses in our system. This way, brides-to-be can feel confident about the accuracy and legitimacy of the items listed while browsing the site.

Q. What is 'My SmartBride'?

Once you've set up an account with SmartBride Boutique, 'My SmartBride' is your main dashboard from which you can manage all of your information. You can:

  1. Manage your items for sale, list new items and delete items that have sold
  2. Create and edit 'Saved Searches' to monitor other items similar to yours
  3. Edit your account information, including updating your password

Selling Items

Q. What can I sell on SmartBride Boutique?

You can sell just about everything, as long as it is wedding related! This includes items such as pre-owned and new wedding dresses, veils, shoes, accessories, ceremony decorations, reception decorations, bridesmaid dresses, mother of the bride dresses, flower girl dresses, ring bearer suits and more!

Q. How do I create and list an item?

First you need to sign up for a free account. Once registered, log in, then click on the SELL button in the top left corner of the page. Fill out all the information you have about your item and preview your listing to make sure it looks just right. When you are finished editing your information and adding photos, your item will be published to the site immediately.

Q. Is it mandatory to fill out all of the fields when listing my item?

We've found that sellers who provide all the information about their items tend to sell their items faster and for more money. Depending on what type of item you are selling, you will find that some fields are mandatory while others are not. By providing more information, your items will be included in more searches, and e-mailed directed to potential buyers daily through their 'Saved Search' e-mail alert.

Q. Are there any fees for listing items?

Individuals can create an account and list as many items as they wish free of charge. SmartBride Boutique does not take any commissions on the sale of your item. For a small fee, you can also upgrade your item to a premium listing to help it sell faster. Retailers pay a monthly subscription to sell discounted and sample items on the site.

Q. What is a premium listing?

For a small fee of $4.95 per month, you can upgrade your listing to a premium listing. A premium listing:

  • Prominently displays your item on our homepage
  • Profiles your item beside searches for similar items
  • Highlights your item across the site with our fancy vintage frame to attract the attention of buyers and stand out in the crowd
Check out everything included with a premium listing.

Q. What are the benefits of a premium listing?

A premium listing increases the visibility of your item, helping it to sell faster. Not only does your item get housed in a cool vintage frame to draw the eye, it is also featured on a rotating basis in multiple locations on our site, like the homepage and in the featured items box in the top right hand corner of the search results page. If a buyer likes what she sees, clicking on your featured item will take her directly to your full listing.

Q. Can I cancel my premium listing before the 3 month minimum is up?

Yes, however you will not receive a refund for any unused portion of the 3 months. When you cancel, your premium listing reverts back to a basic listing. Should you choose to make another item a premium listing in the future, you are subject to the same 3-month minimum.

Q. If I have a premium listing, where is my item featured on the homepage?

When buyers come to our site to browse new items, they generally begin on the homepage. When you upgrade your item to a premium listing, your item is rotated through the featured items box on the homepage. Buyers can scroll through all the featured items, click on the thumbnail images and go directly to your item's listing.

Q. If I have a premium listing, where is my item featured on the Search Results page?

When a buyer clicks on a category (for example, wedding dresses), your item will rotate through the featured items box in the top right hand corner of the page. Again, she can scroll through featured items to her heart's content and link directly to your listing.

Q. How is my premium listing highlighted?

Any time your item is shown on the site, the thumbnail image appears in a cool vintage frame. Your item becomes a priceless piece of art and stands out when compared to basic listings.

Q. How does the billing work for premium listings?

"Premium listings" are billed on a monthly subscription basis beginning with a 3-month minimum subscription of $14.85 ($4.95 per month). In the 4th month after the initial 3 month subscription, you will continue to be billed $4.95 per month on a month to month basis. If you do not wish to be billed after the initial 3 month subscription, you must change the status of your item to trigger the cancellation of monthly subscription fees by either:

  • Clicking the "this item has sold" link within the 'My Items' tab of your 'My SmartBride' user dashboard
  • Clicking the "delete" link within the 'My Items' tab of your 'My SmartBride' user dashboard
  • Clicking the "unfeature this item" link within the 'My Items' tab of your 'My SmartBride' user dashboard
SmartBride Boutique will not refund any pro-rated portion of a monthly subscription should you:
  • Sell or delete an item before the 3-month minimum subscription period expires
  • Sell or delete an item in the middle of the month (after the 3-month minimum subscription)
  • Fail to promptly delete your item before the beginning of the next billing cycle

Q. What is a listing critique?

We know, the word critique sounds a bit scary, but it's really not! Think of it as a little bit of help to make your listing the best it can be! If you're not sure how to set a price, or need help with your photos, or just haven't had many inquiries, we can help. We know exactly what attracts buyers, and what makes them shy away. We will take a look at your listing, offer helpful suggestions to improve it and even fix up your photos! Get your listing critique now.

Q. What is an e-book?

There we go being nerdy again! An electronic book (e-book), is usually a short book about a really specific topic, and meant for a targeted group of people rather than a massive audience. You certainly won't find them on Oprah's book club list.

In this case, we've written a book for our sellers that is full of tips and tricks to help you sell your item faster (beyond any of the fancy marketing we already do). We give you specific instructions, templates, tips and tricks to increase the number of people viewing your item.

Download our FREE e-book, "SmartTips to Sell Your Dress Fast", and either read it on your computer, or print it out and follow along.

Q. What is a Google Adwords campaign?

If you want to direct more people to your listing(s), a Google Adwords campaign can help. In simple terms, if someone Googles the item you have for sale, for example "Maggie Sottero Wedding Dress", an ad for your listing will show in sponsored links on the Google search results page. If they click on that ad, they will go directly to your listing on SmartBride Boutique. We will handle campaign set up including: budgeting, generating keywords and all of the other boring details. Request a Google Adwords campaign now.

Q. How does billing work for a listing critique and a Google Adwords campaign?

Listing critiques and Google Adwords campaigns are billed to your credit card on a one-time basis for $12.95 or $75 respectively. You will be contacted by e-mail within 2 business days of your successful transaction with notification that your service has been delivered or that we need additional information to complete the premium service. SmartBride Boutique does not offer refunds for services rendered.

Q. What is a 'Saved Search' and when does my item get emailed directly to a buyer?

Anyone with a SmartBride Boutique user account can create a 'Saved Search'. Buyers can specify exactly what they are looking for by selecting their item type, price range, size range, and even more detailed criteria like neckline, silhouette, color, label size, street size etc. They save their search and can view it anytime from their 'My SmartBride' and receive an email each morning with any items that match their search.

As a seller, it is very important to list any and all information you know about your item, that's why we've listed a number of fields as mandatory. If a buyer specifies a particular color or size in their search and you haven't listed that information in your description, your item will not be included in the daily 'Saved Searches' email.

You can also use 'Saved Searches' to monitor items similar of your own. It's a good idea to keep an eye on the price comparable items are listed for to ensure you aren't selling your item for too much or too little. You can edit your item information or price at any time from 'My SmartBride'.

Q. When will my listing(s) expire?

All items will expire 12 months after they have been posted, unless you delete it before then. If you have more than one listing, each item runs on its own schedule and will expire 12 months from the date that particular item was posted. Once deleted, items will move into the recent items section of your 'My SmartBride' dashboard for 3 months.

Q. I have deleted my item by accident, can I get it back?

Once you've deleted an item, it will stay in your 'My SmartBride' dashboard for 3 months under the recent items section, just in case you change your mind!

Q. How can I edit, relist or delete my item(s) from the site?

To edit, relist or delete your item(s), log into your 'My SmartBride' account and click on 'My Items' and select the appropriate action.

Q. How do I set a price for my item(s)?

It is completely up to you to decide how much you want to charge for your items. Below are a few tips to consider:

  • If your item is new, unworn, still with tags or in original boxes, we suggest a 20-30% discount off the retail price
  • If your item is once worn or used and in good condition, we suggest a 50% discount off the original retail price
  • If your item is damaged, not dry cleaned, or more than 2 years old, we suggest a 60%-80% discount off the original price
Remember, if your item hasn't received many inquiries, it could be a number of things including price. If you decide to lower the price, go back into your 'My SmartBride' and edit your item. Consider purchasing a listing critique and we'll help you identify potential problems with your listing. You can also upgrade to a premium listing to get more exposure on the site or purchase a Google Adwords campaign to drive Google searchers directly to your item.

Q. How will buyers contact me?

Buyers will get in touch with you via the secure SmartBride Boutique website. An interested buyer will click on the E-mail Seller button on your listing and type in their message to you. This message is e-mailed directly to the e-mail address you have provided in your 'My Account' information stored on your 'My SmartBride'. Once you receive the e-mail, you can continue to e-mail directly with the potential buyer. You may wish to speak on the phone, or arrange a time to meet to meet and ultimately sell your item.

Q. What do I do when my item sells?

When your item sells, you must go back into 'My SmartBride', click on the 'My Items' tab and delete the item you have sold. You are responsible for deleting items that are no longer available for sale.

Q. How do I ship an item once it has sold?

To arrange shipping, contact a professional mail carrier, such as Canada Post, Fed Ex, UPS or others. Take your item to one of these locations and they can help you ensure it is packaged properly. They will also provide a tracking number that you can share with the buyer so you can both monitor the delivery of the item.

Q. Should I insure the shipment?

This is something that should be discussed with the buyer directly. However, we would recommend insuring the item you are selling to its fullest value.

Q. How should I pack my item for shipping?

Because these items will be used for a bride-to-be's big day, you want to ensure your item is packed with care. If not packed properly, an item can become damaged or misshaped. Working with a professional mail carrier can help you ensure that your item is properly protected if you do have to ship the item a distance. You may also want to inquire with a bridal boutique about the safest way to box or package a gown.


How to Create the Best Listing

Q. How do I create the best listing?

There are a number of ways you can ensure you create a compelling listing for your item. After all, great listings showcase your item better, helping it to sell faster.

  1. Include as many details about the item as possible. For each item you post, there are a number of fields we ask you to fill in. The more of these fields you can complete, the more information you are providing the buyer. This helps the buyer to better understand if the item is what they are searching for
  2. Upload multiple photos of your items, including front, back and detail views. Ensure that these pictures are of a high quality (i.e. not too grainy) so that buyers can get a good understanding of quality and current state of the item
  3. Be truthful about the item(s) you are posting for sale

Q. Where do I get photos to use for my listing?

If your item was used or worn in a wedding, it's a good idea to upload photos from your wedding day. If you are selling a dress and do not want to show your face, there are various techniques to blank out your face, keeping your identity secure. We've found a quick and easy tutorial for Microsoft Paint which usually comes free with any PC computer. We suggest using the circle tool to draw a shape with a solid colour fill to block out faces in the photo.

You can also take your own photos of the item. If your selling a dress, we would suggest photographing the dress on a person, rather than on a hanger, as potential buyers will get a better idea of the shape and fit.

You can also consider posting photos from the manufacturer's website with permission.

Q. How do I take a good photo?

Good photos are an important part of a compelling listing because they give the potential buyer a better understanding of the item for sale. To take a good photo, we suggest the following:

  • Consider your setting. How you display your items is an important part of the impression you provide potential buyers when they first see your listing. Therefore, when you take photos for your listing, choose a setting that enhances your item and shows it off to its fullest. For a dress, consider showcasing it on a model or mannequin. For jewels, consider showing them against velvet or another rich fabric (preferably dark in color), rather than on the floor or counter. You can even use a dark shirt,jacket or wool coat.
  • Use a digital camera and photograph your items during the daytime with as much natural light as possible.
  • Shoot from multiple angles. Take some photos that show the whole item, and others that focus on interesting details like beading, embroidery, or other unique touches.

Q. How do I upload my photos?

You can upload up to four images of each item you're selling. Each photo can be a maximum file size of 500 KB.

If you are not sure what size your photos are:

  • On a PC Right click the file within the folder where it is saved and select Properties. The size will generally end with KB or MB. You want under 500 KB. Anything with MB is too big!
  • On a MAC Right click the file within the folder where it is saved and select "Get Info". The size will generally end with KB or MB. You want under 500 KB. Anything with MB is too big!

If you need to make your photos smaller, you can do it easily using the free "Paint" software on your PC by following these instructions.. If you are familiar with Photoshop or Picasa you can also use those tools. First reduce the image size to a maximum width of 500 pixels. Then you may wish to save as a jpeg that it suitable for web viewing. Try saving at 72 dpi.

Now to upload your photos:

  1. First, save your photos on your computer to a file folder you can easily access.
  2. Go to 'My SmartBride', select 'My Items' and then click edit beside the item that you'd like to add photos.
  3. Scroll down to the bottom of the form. To upload pictures, click on the browse button. This will allow you to find find the photo you want to use for your listing on your computer.
  4. When you have found the photo you want to use, click on the photo/filename and select "Open".
  5. Repeat the process for another photo by clicking on browse one space down.
  6. You can now preview your listing with the new photos. Once finished, re-publish your item.
Your images will appear as thumbnails in 'My Items', however they will be full size in your listing. You can always edit, delete or add more photos, even after your item has been posted.

Q. Can you help me create my listing?

Absolutely! Listing critiques are available for a fee of $12.95.


Negotiating 101

Q. What are Terms of Sale?

Terms of Sale are the rules you determine when selling an item. Examples of common terms include:

  1. Whether you are willing to ship the item, or simply to sell locally.
  2. Whether the sale is final, or if returns are accepted within a certain number of days after receiving the item
  3. When and where the transaction will occur
  4. What method of payment will be accepted
  5. Who is paying for things like shipping, taxes, duty etc. (if required)
Regardless of the terms you choose, it is important to remember that the more flexible you are, the easier it will be to make a deal.

Q. How do I arrange the sale with a buyer?

SmartBride Boutique is intended to be a site where local buyer and sellers can connect in person to buy, sell and save. If you have received interest from a potential buyer, arrange to meet at a time that is convenient for both of you to allow the buyer to inspect or try on the item. If you receive an email that looks suspicious in any way, you are not obligated to respond.

Q. Does SmartBride Boutique help me to arrange payment and shipping?

No. SmartBride Boutique encourages buyers and sellers to meet directly to inspect items, try on dresses and discuss details for sale. If a buyer is interested in purchasing your item, you can make payment and shipping arrangements directly with them. We recommend that you decide who will pay for shipping (if required) before you finalize the sale.

Q. Who should pay for packing and shipping?

Packing and shipping are things that you may want to negotiate as part of the sale directly with the buyer. It is important to decide who will pay for these details before you finalize the sale. If you plan to allow the buyer to return the item, you should also agree in advance about who would be responsible for the return shipping fees. Keep in mind that if you deal with a local buyer, you can often remove these costs entirely.

Q. What if a potential buyer offers me less than my asking price?

If a buyer offers you less than your asking price, you will have to decide whether the offer is reasonable and weigh it against your desire to sell. However, you do have a few options:

  • You can counter offer with another price
  • You can stay at your original price, but throw in an additional item free of charge. For example, if someone is interested in purchasing a dress from you, you might consider including a veil, or a shawl to keep the original price.
  • You can stick to your original price and refuse the offer
Regardless, the price you accept is ultimately your decision. Good luck!

Q. Does SmartBride Boutique offer any type of mediation between buyers and sellers?

No, SmartBride Boutique is a website that connects buyers and sellers. We do not provide any intermediary services with regards to financial transactions, shipping or price negotiation.

Q. How do I know if a buyer is legitimate?

SmartBride Boutique is intended to be a local site where women can meet in person, inspect items and try things on. Chances are, if buyers are not interested in trying a gown on or seeing items in person, they are attempting some kind of fraud. Unfortunately, this type of fraud can occur on classified and auction sites but is generally avoided by following a few simple guidelines. Be aware of messages or inquiries:

  • written in poor English
  • from buyers who ask you to ship your item sight unseen
  • that suggest the buyer will pay by cashier's cheque, wire transfer, western union or mailing a personal cheque
  • that offer you more than the value of your item
If you are suspicious of a potential buyer, do not give them any bank information, and avoid giving out other personal information like your exact address. If at any time you feel your bank information has been compromised, phone your bank immediately to get their advice. For more information, please see our detailed FAQs on Fraud.

Q. What if I encounter a fraudulent buyer?

First, if you have divulged any banking, credit card or information related to your PayPal account, contact your bank, credit card company or PayPal directly without delay. Secondly, report the crime using the following services:

  • Canadian PhoneBusters hotline: 888-495-8501
  • Internet Fraud Complaint Center http://www.ic3.gov
  • US Federal Trade Commission toll free hotline (if either party is a US citizen): 877-FTC-HELP (877-382-4357)
  • Non-emergency number for your local police department.

Lastly, if you suspect that an item posted for sale, or a potential buyer on SmartBride Boutique may be part of a scam, please contact us with the details at report@smartbrideboutique.ca. Please include all correspondence you have had with the party plus the URL of the item in question.



Questions from Buyers:

Getting Started


Searching for Items


Tips for Buying Pre-owned Wedding Items


Inquiring About an Item


Negotiating 101


Paying for Your Items



Getting Started

Q. Why do I have to sign in to contact a seller?

We require both buyers and sellers to create accounts. At SmartBride Boutique we understand that weddings are a very important and personal event, and we implement certain checks to ensure both buyers and sellers feel confident in the accuracy and legitimacy of the items listed on the site as well as the true intentions of potential buyers.

Once you have an account, you can also make use of our 'Saved Searches' and 'Favorites' to ensure you never miss out on an item you're looking for.

Q. What is 'My SmartBride'?

'My SmartBride' is your account area where you can:

  1. Access items that you have 'Favorited' when browsing the site
  2. Create and edit your 'Saved Searches' using our most advanced search form.
  3. Edit your account information including updating your password.
After your wedding, this is also where you can manage items for sale including listings items, editing items, deleting items etc.

Q. What can I buy on SmartBride Boutique?

You can buy just about everything, as long as it is wedding related! This includes pre-owned and new wedding dresses, veils, shoes, accessories, ceremony decorations, reception decorations, bridesmaid dresses, mother of the bride dresses, flower girl dresses, ring bearer suits and more.

Q. How do I select the city or area I would like to search?

When you first visit the site, you can select a city or area by clicking the 'select a location' link located in the "Buy" box on the homepage. If at any time you would like to select a different location, you can click the "change" link beside the name of your currently selected city or area in the upper right hand corner or the page.

If you are not limiting your search locally, you can also search items from an entire province, country, or all listings worldwide.

Q. What are the different lengths of dresses?

We know there's a lot of choice out there! If you're wondering how to choose the right length for you, first you need to know what the heck intermission length is and the difference between tea length and knee length! Here's a helpful overview:

Floor Length:This hem just barely touches the ground and is the traditional length for most gowns, whether the silhouette is straight or full. The perfect length if you're planning a formal wedding.

Ankle Length:This one is fairly self-explanatory with the hem sitting right at the ankles. This is a more semi-formal gown option for your big day.

Ballerina:Think tutu style but not as short as a ballerina's! This hem sits just above the ankle for a fun and flirty look.

Intermission:No, it's not part of your theatre excursion! It's a hem that sits somewhere between your knee and ankle and is generally worn if you're planning a semi-formal or more casual wedding.

Hi-Lo: This hem is a variation on the intermission length and uses an intermission hemline in the front and a floor length or longer hem in the back.

Tea Length: This hem dates back to the afternoon teas of yesteryear, and sits at the shin. It works wonderfully for a chic yet conservative wedding look.

Knee Length: This hem sits just below the knee and is a good look for your maids or for you if you're a casual bride.

Mini Skirt: This hem sits well above the knee so if you're a dramatic bride who wants to show off your long legs, this is for you!

Searching for Items

Q. How do I find an item on the site?

Begin by selecting your prefered location using the location selector in the top right hand corner of the page (to the right of the search bar) or from the "Buy" box on the homepage. Then, you can choose to:

Browse: You can browse through all the listings within a category by clicking on the light blue buttons such as "Wedding Dresses", "Bridesmaids", "Shoes", "Jewelry", "Decorations", "Veils", "Accessories", "Free" or any of the categories under the "More" drop down list. Here you will find all items arranged with the most recent listings at the top. You can also sort listings by price, date listed and designer.

Search: If you are looking for a specific item, you can use the "Search" bar at the top of every page. Type a keyword, and then select a category from the drop down menu. You can also choose to search all categories. Click "Search".

Refine Your Search: When viewing search results, you have the option to refine your search using the "Refine my Search" box above the results.

Advanced Search/Saved Search: Click on the 'Saved Search' icon from anywhere on the site and you will be redirected to the advanced search form. Here, you can start refining your search using multiple criteria, from size and price to designer, silhouette and colour. Once you've chosen the criteria you're looking for, you can save that search, view any items matching the search at any time, AND have new items matching your search criteria emailed to you daily! Items sell very quickly, so we recommend setting up saved searches for all items you are looking for. That way, you'll never miss an item.

Q. Can you alert me when new items are posted?

It would be our pleasure. You can create as many 'Saved Searches' as you wish. Once you've created a 'Saved Search' with all of your criteria, we'll email you each morning with new items matching your criteria. If there are no items matching your searches, you will not receive an email.

Q. What is a 'Saved Search'?

Saved Search is our most advanced search function, created to save you time and ensure you never miss out on items that fit your criteria. Saved search allows you to create and save specific search criteria which you can reuse each time you visit the site. Once you save your search, you can view the search results by clicking on the "view results" link on the 'Saved Searches' tab of your 'My SmartBride' dashboard. New items matching your criteria will also be emailed to you daily. If you wish, you can elect not to receive these emails.

Q. How do I create or view a 'Saved Search'?

Throughout the site you will come across the saved search icon. When you click on the icon you will be redirected to the advanced search form. From here you can specify the type of item that you are looking for and then select all the specific criteria for the item. For example, you can select the colour, size, neckline, silhouette and designer to let us know you are looking for an ivory or white wedding dress between sizes 6 and 10 with a sweetheart neckline and A-line silhouette by Vera Wang or Maggie Sottero or Melissa Sweet.

Create a Saved Search: Fill out the advanced search form, give your search a name, and then click "Save this Search" at the bottom of the page.

View a Saved Search: You can view the results of your search at any time by clicking on the name you've given you search within the 'Saved Searches' tab of your 'My SmartBride' dashboard.

Q. How do I favorite an item?

If you would like to favorite an item, click on the "favs" icon. You'll find this icon next to an item on the search results page, or on the actual item page.

Q. I favorited an item, where do I find it?

To see items you've favorited, click on the 'Favorites' tab in your 'My SmartBride' dashboard or on the 'Favorites' button on the top right hand corner of the site.

Q. What should I do if I see a listing that I think is spam, offensive, mis-categorized or illegal?

As a user, you can report any listings you believe are offensive, obscene, illegal, spam or fraudulent using the "report this item" link underneath the photos on each listing. The "report this item" form requires you to classify the listing using a drop down menu. It is optional to enter your name, email and a message. SmartBride Boutique will deal with the listing accordingly as soon as possible. We welcome any feedback with regards to this policy at report@smartbrideboutique.com.


Tips for Buying Pre-owned Wedding Items

Q. Are all of the items for sale on SmartBride Boutique used?

No. You will find a variety of items on the site. Some items are used, some pre-owned (but never used or worn), some are samples and some are brand new items that are discounted. If you see a blue price tag icon next to an item, this means it is being sold by a retailer, and not an individual. Within the item listing, sellers can also submit what condition the item is in.

Q. Isn't it hard to shop for wedding dresses and other wedding items online? How can I know if they'll fit, or if I'll like an item once it arrives?

Yes it can be difficult to assess condition and fit when buying something online! That's why we recommend that you shop for items such as pre-owned wedding dresses locally. This allows you to inspect items closely, and try things on or test them out before buying. It's always a risk to buy an item sight unseen and have it shipped to you.

By buying locally, you can deal in cash payments and also reduce shipping costs and carbon emissions.

Q. How do I know what size I am? What is the difference between street size and wedding dress size?

The general rule of thumb when estimating your wedding dress size is to add 4 to your street size. For example, if you are a size 6 in street clothes, you are probably about a size 10 wedding dress. Of course, when buying a previously altered dress, it is more important to compare the previous wearer's measurements to your own as the dress is not longer true to its label size. This is why it is especially important to try the dress on before you buy, or at least understand the alterations done so you can have a better idea of which alterations are reversible.


Inquiring About an Item

Q. How do I contact sellers?

Start by contacting the seller by email using the secure "Email Seller" button on every SmartBride Boutique listing. Your message is e-mailed directly to the seller. The seller will likely e-mail you back, unless you supply prefered contact information. Once you receive the e-mail, you can continue to e-mail directly with the seller. You may wish to speak on the phone, or arrange a time to meet locally to inspect and try on the item before making a deal.

Q. What if the seller doesn't get back to me?

We encourage sellers to respond to every inquiry, however, there are a few reasons why you may not hear back from a seller.

  1. The item has sold and they haven't deleted it yet.
  2. You have offered a price that is below what they are willing to accept.
  3. Your email seemed suspicious to them.

Q. What if I suspect a seller is fraudulent?

First, if you have divulged any banking, credit card or information related to your PayPal account, contact your bank, credit card company or PayPal directly without delay. Secondly, report the crime using the following services:

  • Canada PhoneBusters hotline: 888-495-8501
  • Internet Fraud Complaint Center: www.ic3.gov
  • US Federal Trade Commission toll free hotline (if either party is a US citizen): 877-382-4357
  • Non-emergency number for your local police department.
Lastly, if you suspect that an item listed for sale, or a potential seller on SmartBride Boutique may be part of a scam, please contact us with the details at report@smartbrideboutique.com. Please include all correspondence you have had with the party plus the URL of the item in question.

Negotiating 101

Q. Can I bargain with sellers?

Yes, of course. The final price is entirely up to you and the seller. SmartBride Boutique does not take any percentage of the sale.

Q. What are Terms of Sale?

Each seller will determine their own terms which you can then negotiate along with the price of the item. For example, some sellers are not willing to ship an item.

Examples of common terms include:

  1. Whether you are willing to ship the item, or simply to sell locally.
  2. Whether the sale is final, or if returns are accepted within a certain number of days after receiving the item
  3. When and where the transaction will occur
  4. What method of payment will be accepted
  5. Who is paying for things like shipping, taxes, duty etc. (if required)

Q. Who should pay for packing and shipping?

That's entirely between you and the seller. But keep in mind, wedding dresses are large items and can often be heavy and expensive to ship. If not packed properly, shipping a dress can lead to damage or misshaping. As always, we recommend buying locally to ensure what you see in person is indeed the final product you receive.

Q. Does SmartBride Boutique offer any type of mediation between buyers and sellers?

No, SmartBride Boutique is a website that connects buyers and sellers. We do not provide any intermediary services with regards to financial transactions, shipping or price negotiation.


Paying for Items

Q. What is the most secure way for me to send payment to the seller?

The best and most secure way to send payment is to meet in person and inspect the item before making a deal. This way you can prevent fraud and deal locally. If you are comfortable you can pay cash, or cheque, depending on what you arrange with the seller. If you are shipping an item from another province or state, you might want to consider 3rd party Escrow services or PayPal.


Questions from Retailers:

Getting Started


Selling Items


How to Create the Best Listings


Negotiating 101


Getting Started

Q. As a retailer, can I list items on SmartBride Boutique?

Absolutely. SmartBride Boutique offers three types of retailer packages, providing you with a chance to sell off samples and last year's dresses to a highly targeted demographic. Our three retailer packages (Lily, Sophia and Cassandra) are based on the number of items you have for sale and offer you a direct marketing opportunity unparalleled in the industry. For a detailed explanation of each package, please see our retailer package breakdown.

Q. How do I get started?

Selling your items on SmartBride Boutique is easy! All you need to do is register for an account, and click on SELL in the top left hand corner. After you complete the form to sell your first item, you will be prompted to choose one of our retailer packages,. You can continue to list additional items for sale until you reach the maximum number of items available within your package.

Q. Why do I have to register to list an item?

At SmartBride Boutique, we understand that weddings are a very important and personal event. In an attempt to deter poor quality, spam and/or fraudulent listings, retailers are required to register and validate their email addresses in our system. This way, brides-to-be can feel confident in the accuracy and legitimacy of the items listed while browsing items on the site. Plus, as a registered user, you can set up 'Saved Searches' to monitor the prices of items similar to yours listed on the site.

Q. What is 'My SmartBride'?

Once you've set up an account with SmartBride Boutique, 'My SmartBride' is your main dashboard from which you can manage all of your information. You can:

  1. Manage your items for sale, list new items and delete items that have sold
  2. Create and edit 'Saved Searches' to monitor other items similar to yours
  3. Edit your account information, including updating your password

Selling Items

Q. What can I sell on SmartBride Boutique?

You can sell just about everything, as long as it is wedding related! This includes items such as pre-owned and new wedding dresses, veils, shoes, accessories, ceremony decorations, reception decorations, bridesmaid dresses, mother of the bride dresses, flower girl dresses, ring bearer suits and more.

Q. Does it cost anything to sell an item on SmartBride Boutique?

As a retailer, you can only sell items on SmartBride Boutique by selecting one of our three retailer packages: Lily, Sophia or Cassandra. Our retailer packages are based on the number of items you have available to list and range from $24.95 to $99.95 per month. The Lily package is for retailers who want to highlight 5 or less items on SmartBride Boutique. The Sophia and Cassandra packages are for retailers with 6 to 15 items and more than 15 items respectively. Items can range from wedding dresses and bridesmaid dresses to jewelry, accessories, shoes, or any combination thereof! For more detailed information, please see our retailer package breakdown.

Q. How do I create and list an item on SmartBride Boutique?

Selling your items on SmartBride Boutique is easy! All you need to do is register for an account, and click on SELL in the top left hand corner. After you complete the form to sell your first item, you will be prompted to choose one of our retailer packages. You can continue to list additional items for sale until you reach the maximum number of items available within your package.

Q. Is it mandatory to complete all of the fields for my listing?

We've found that retailers who provide all the information about their items tend to sell their items faster and for more money. Depending on what type of item you are selling, you will find that some fields are mandatory while others are not. By providing more information, your items will be included in more searches, and e-mailed directed to potential buyers daily through their 'Saved Search' e-mail alert.

Q. What are retailer packages?

Retailer packages are for retailers who have one or more items to sell, and who want to clear discounted inventory out of storage and off books quickly and easily. Retailer packages are based on a minimum 3 month initial subscription and then move to month to month thereafter. As a retailer, you can choose one of 3 packages based on the number of items you think you will post. For details, please see our retailer packages breakdown.

Q. What is included in a retailer package?

If you choose one of the 3 retailer packages available, you will receive:

  • Highlighted listings in daily emails to pre-qualified buyers showcasing items that match their exact 'Saved Search' criteria.
  • Highlighted listings within search results to ensure your items standout from an individual's basic listing.
  • Store name promotion on all search results and product pages.
  • "See All Items from this Retailer" widget on every item page to promote purchases of multiple items.
  • Ability to see how many times your items have been viewed and favorited on your 'My SmartBride' seller's dashboard.
  • Ability to carefully monitor how similar items are priced using 'Saved Searches'.

Q. Why should I sign up for a retailer package with SmartBride Boutique?

A SmartBride Boutique retailer package enables you to clear discounted inventory out of storage and off your books quickly and easily. At SmartBride Boutique, we've taken great care to develop a system to connect potential buyers with exactly the items they are looking for resulting in quick, profitable sales for our retailers. Our expertise in direct marketing and e-commerce combined with feedback from our buyers has laid the foundation for our retailer packages. What we've created is a combination of a targeted matching system and an online boutique (similar to an ebay store) that maximizes your profit and marketing ROI (return on investment).

Our retailer packages offer you a direct marketing opportunity unparalleled in the industry. Find more information on why SmartBride Boutique's retailer package is a great way to clear out discounted inventory.

Q. Can I cancel my subscription before the 3 month minimum is up?

Yes, however you will not receive a refund for any unused portion of the 3 months. When you cancel, any active listings will also be removed from the site. Should you choose to sign up again, your items will be saved within your 'My SmartBride' for 3 months and you can easily re-list them without having to enter all of the information and photos again. New signups are subject to the same 3-month minimum.

Q. Can I upgrade or downgrade my subscription within the first three months?

Yes. If you find that you have more items to sell than your existing package will allow, you can do one of two things:

  • Go to 'My SmartBride' and click on your "Profile" tab. From there, you can change/edit your package, or
  • Start listing another item. Before the item goes live, you will be prompted to upgrade to a larger package.

When you upgrade, your monthly subscription will be pro-rated to reflect the higher cost, starting from the day you changed your package level.

Q. Can I upgrade or downgrade my subscription after the initial 3 month period?

Yes. It works the same way as it does during the first 3 months for both upgrades and downgrades. You will be billed a pro-rated amount for the remainder of the current month, and your subsequent monthly bills will be for the new package amount.

Q. How does the billing work for retailer packages?

SmartBride Boutique's retailer packages have an initial 3 month sign up period and then move to month to month after.  During your initial 3 months, we work closely with you to get your listings up, and monitor your listings to provide you with feedback on how to improve to ensure you have a successful experience. For example, with the Lily package (up to 5 items), the monthly fee is $24.95.  Your first bill on sign up will be $74.85. You are not billed again until the beginning of your 4th month. At that time, you will be billed each month until you elect to cancel your account. 

Q. Does a retailer listing look different from an individual seller's pre-owned wedding item listing?

Yes, all of your thumbnail images are framed with a blue dotted line to indicate that you are a reputable store. You'll also find a blue retailer tag icon next your company's name on search results pages and product listings to increase brand awareness for your store.

Every time a potential buyer selects one of your items, another box shows at the bottom of the page where the buyer can choose to "see retailer's other items". Plus, if a potential buyer clicks on your company name, all of the items you have for sale are displayed.

Q. Can I sell regularly priced items from my inventory?

No. SmartBride Boutique is focused on helping brides-to-be stretch their wedding dollars further. Retailers are encouraged to list wedding items that are deeply discounted such as samples or last year's models. SmartBride Boutique retailer packages are designed to help you increase awareness for your business and drive people to your store, while selling off samples or older items to make room for new stock, and bring in cash for items that may otherwise go unsold.

Q. Can a potential buyer see all of my posted items at once?

Yes. If a buyer clicks on one of your items, there are two different ways they will be able to see the other items you have for sale. First, on your product page there will be a box at the bottom of the page where the buyer can choose to see your other items. Second, if a potential buyer clicks on your company name, all of the items you have listed will be shown.

Q. Can I post multiples of the same dress in one listing?

No. Just like our individual sellers, one dress = one listing. Although you may have multiple sizes of one particular item, listing many sizes as one item will actually make it more difficult for a potential buyer to find your item. Buyers almost always specify a size or size range when searching for an item. So, if you do not post dresses with their specific size, your listings will not surface in search results, or be emailed directly to potential buyers in their daily email. This will limit the exposure your item will get which could result in a slower sale.

Q. Can I list the same item in multiple cities?

No, but never fear! Buyers can elect to search for dresses in their city, province, region or worldwide if they are willing to buy an item and have it shipped. It's up to you to clearly communicate shipping, returns and all the details when you receive an inquiry from outside your city.

Q. Are there any other ways to get more exposure for my items using SmartBride Boutique?

Yes! Please contact us directly at retailers@smartbrideboutique.com for more information. There are plenty of options to help you spread the word about your items and your store including: banner ads targeted to users from your city on the SmartBride Boutique website, sponsored content in a bride-to-be newsletter or blog post. We can also assist you in setting up a Google Adwords campaign for your items, sending people who are searching for items like yours on Google directly to your listing on SmartBride Boutique.

Q. What is a 'Saved Search' and when does my item get emailed directly to a buyer?

Anyone with a SmartBride Boutique user account can create a 'Saved Search'. Buyers can specify exactly what they are looking for by selecting their item type, price range, size range, and even more detailed criteria like neckline, silhouette, color, label size, street size etc. They save their search and can view it anytime from their 'My SmartBride' and receive an email each morning with any items that match their search.

As a retailer, it is very important to list any and all information you know about your item, that's why we've listed a number of fields as mandatory. If a buyer specifies a particular color or size in their search and the seller has not listed that information in their description, your item will not be included in the daily 'Saved Searches' email.

Retailers can use 'Saved Searches' to monitor items similar to their own. You should always keep an eye on what comparable items are listed for to ensure you aren't selling your item for too much or too little. You can edit your item information or price at any time from 'My SmartBride'.

Q. When will my listing(s) expired?

All items will expire 12 months after they have been posted, unless you delete it before then. If you have more than one listing, each item runs on its own schedule and will expire 12 months from the date a particular item was posted. Once deleted, items will move into the recent items section of your dashboard for 3 months. However, if you cancel your subscription with SmartBride Boutique, your listing(s) will automatically be deleted.

Q. How can I edit, relist or delete my item(s) from the site?

To edit, relist or delete your items, log into your 'My SmartBride' account and click on "My Items" and select the appropriate action.

Q. How will buyers contact me?

Buyers will get in touch with you via the secure SmartBride Boutique website. An interested buyer will click on the E-mail Seller button on your listing and type in their message to you. This message is e-mailed directly to the e-mail address you have provided in your 'My Account' information stored on your 'My SmartBride'. Once you receive the e-mail, you can continue to e-mail directly with the potential buyer. You may wish to speak on the phone, or arrange an appointment for the buyer to try on the item.

Q. What happens to my listing once my item sells?

When your listing sells, you must go back into 'My SmartBride', click on "My Items" and delete the item you have sold. You are responsible for deleting items that are no longer available for sale.

Q. How do I ship an item once it has sold?

To arrange shipping, contact a professional mail carrier, such as Canada Post, Fed Ex, UPS or others. Take your item to one of these locations and they can help you ensure it is packaged properly. They will also provide a tracking number that you can share with the buyer so you can both monitor the delivery of the item.

Q. Should I insure the shipment?

This is something that should be discussed with the buyer directly. However, we would recommend insuring the item you are selling to its fullest value.

Q. How should I pack my item for shipping?

Because these are items to be used for a bride-to-be's big day, you want to ensure your item is packed with care. If not packed properly, an item can become damaged or misshaped. Working with a professional mail carrier can help you ensure that your item is properly protected if you do have to ship the item a distance.


How to Create the Best Listings

Q. How can I increase the chance of getting a good response to my listing?

There are a number of ways you can ensure you create a great listing for your item. After all, great listings showcase your item better, helping it sell faster.

  1. Include as many details about the item as possible. For each item you post, there are a number of fields we ask you to fill in. The more of these fields you can complete, the more information you are providing the buyer. This helps the buyer to better understand if the item is what they are searching for
  2. Upload multiple photos of your items, including front, back and detail views. Ensure that these pictures are of a high quality (i.e. not too grainy) so that buyers can get a good understanding of quality and current state of the item
  3. Be truthful about the item(s) you are posting for sale

Q. Where do I get photos to show in my listing?

Photos are an important part of every listing because they give the potential buyer a better understanding of the item for sale. As a retailer you can either take photos of your item in the store setting or you can use manufacturer press photos (if you have permission).

Q. How do I take good photos of my item?

Good photos are an important part of an engaging listing because they give the potential buyer a better understanding of the item for sale. To take a good photo, we suggest the following:

Consider your setting. How you display your items in your store is an important part of the impression you provide customers. Use this same logic when you take your photos for your listing. Choose a setting that enhances your item and shows it off to its fullest. For a dress, consider showcasing it on a model or mannequin. For jewels, consider showing them against velvet or another rich fabric, rather than on the floor or counter.

Use a digital camera and photograph your items during the daytime with as much natural light as possible.

Use multiple angles. Take some photos that show the whole item, and others that focus on interesting details like beading, embroidery, or other unique touches.

If you have permission to use pictures from the manufacturer, consider adding these in as well.

Q. How do I upload my photos?

You can upload up to four images of each item you're selling. Each photo can be a maximum file size of 500 KB.

  1. First, save your photos on your computer to a file folder you can easily access.
  2. Go to 'My SmartBride', select 'My Items' and then click edit beside the item that you'd like to add photos.
  3. Scroll down to the bottom of the form. To upload pictures, click on the browse button. This will allow you to find find the photo you want to use for your listing on your computer.
  4. When you have found the photo you want to use, click on the photo/filename and select "Open".
  5. Repeat the process for another photo by clicking on browse one space down.
  6. You can now preview your listing with the new photos. Once finished, re-publish your item.

Your images will appear as thumbnails in "My Items", however they will be full size in your listing. You can always edit, delete or add more photos, even after your listing has been posted.

Q. Can you help me create my listing?

Absolutely! If you need help with your first posting, contact us a retailers@smartbrideboutique.com and we can walk you through your first posting, help you with your photos and provide a posting critique to help you engage with potential buyers when they visit your listing.


Negotiating 101

Q. What are Terms of Sale?

Terms of Sale are the rules you determine need to happen in order to make a sale with a buyer. Examples of common terms include:

  1. Whether you are willing to ship the item, or only want to sell locally.
  2. Whether the sale is final, or if returns are accepted within a certain number of days after receiving the item
  3. When and where the transaction will occur
  4. What method of payment will be accepted
  5. Who is paying for things like shipping, taxes, duty etc. (if required)

Regardless of the terms you choose, it is important to remember that the more flexible you are, the easier it will be to make a deal.

Q. How do I arrange the sale with a buyer?

SmartBride Boutique is intended to be a site where local buyers and sellers can connect in person to buy, sell and save. If you have received interest from a potential buyer, arrange to meet and inspect the item at a time that is convenient for both of you. If you receive an email that looks suspicious in any way, you're not obligated to respond.

Q. Does SmartBride Boutique help me to arrange payment and shipping?

No. SmartBride Boutique encourages buyers and sellers to meet directly to inspect items, try on dresses and discuss details for sale. If a buyer is interested in purchasing your item, you can make payment and shipping arrangements directly with them. We recommend that you decide who will pay for shipping (if required) before you finalize the sale.

Q. Who should pay for packing and shipping?

Packing and shipping are things that you may want to negotiate as part of the sale directly with the buyer. It is important to decide who will pay for these details before you finalize the sale. If you plan to allow the buyer to return the item, you should also agree in advance about who would be responsible for the return shipping fees. Keep in mind that if you deal with a local buyer, you can often remove these costs entirely.

Q. What if a potential buyer offers me less than my asking price?

If a buyer offers you less than your asking price, you will have to decide whether the offer is reasonable and weigh it against your desire to sell. However, you do have a few options:

  1. You can counter offer with another price
  2. You can stay at your original price, but throw in an additional item free of charge. For example, if someone is interested in purchasing a dress from you, you might consider including a veil, or a shawl to keep the original price.
  3. You can stick to your original price and refuse the offer

Regardless, the price you accept is ultimately your decision. Good luck!

Q. Does SmartBride Boutique offer any type of mediation between buyers and sellers?

No, SmartBride Boutique is a website that connects buyers and sellers. We do not provide any intermediary services with regards to financial transactions, shipping or price negotiation.

Q. What is the most secure way for me to receive payment from the buyer?

If you are dealing with a local buyer, the most secure way is to meet the buyer in person to receive payment, either via cash or credit card (at your store). If you are shipping an item, credit card payment or Escrow (a 3rd party payment processor) are all reliable options.

Q. How do I know if a buyer is sincere?

SmartBride Boutique is intended to be a local site where women can meet in person, inspect items and try things on. Chances are, if buyers are not interested in trying a gown on or seeing items in person, they are attempting some kind of fraud. Unfortunately, this type of fraud can occur on classified and auction sites but is generally avoided by following a few simple guidelines. Be aware of messages or inquiries:

  1. written in poor English
  2. from buyers who ask you to ship your item sight unseen
  3. that suggest the buyer will pay by cashier's cheque, wire transfer, western union or mailing a personal cheque
  4. that offer you more than the value of your item

If you are suspicious of a potential buyer, do not give them any bank information, and avoid giving out other personal information like your exact address. If at any time you feel your bank information has been compromised, phone your bank immediately to get their advice. For more information, please see our detailed FAQs on Fraud.

Q. What if I encounter a fraudulent buyer?

First, if you have divulged any banking, credit card or information related to your PayPal account, contact your bank, credit card company or PayPal directly without delay. Secondly, report the crime using the following services:

Lastly, if you suspect that an item posted for sale, or a potential buyer on SmartBride Boutique may be part of a scam, please contact us with the details at report@smartbrideboutique.ca. Please include all correspondence you have had with the party plus the URL of the item in question.




General Questions: Accounts, Passwords, Company Information

About SmartBride Boutique


Getting Started


My Account


Site Features


Testimonials


Advertisers, Vendors and Retailers


Report Abuse


About SmartBride Boutique

Q. What is SmartBride Boutique?

SmartBride Boutique is a free wedding classifieds site helping today's savvy brides create the wedding day of their dreams on a realistic budget, without sacrificing designer names or fabulous style. Brides connect to buy, sell and save on everything wedding including: wedding dresses, bridesmaid gowns, decor, accessories and more. Smart brides can have their cake and eat it too!

Q. Who uses SmartBride Boutique?

SmartBride Boutique users are brides-to-be, recent brides, bridesmaids, mothers of brides and grooms, wedding planners, wedding vendors, wedding retailers and anyone else interested in buying and selling wedding related items.

Q. Is SmartBride Boutique free?

Individuals can create a free account and list as many items as they wish free of charge. For a small fee, you can also upgrade your item to a featured listing to help it sell faster. Retailers pay a monthly subscription to sell discounted and sample items on the site.

Q. I'm a retailer, can I used SmartBride Boutique?

Yes! SmartBride Boutique is a great place to clear out samples, discontinued or discounted items from your inventory. Please read our FAQs for retailers, and choose a retailer package that suits your needs.

Q. How is SmartBride Boutique different from other classifieds services, like ebay or craigslist?

Unlike ebay, SmartBride Boutique was created to enable local transactions. We encourage users to deal locally in cash, inspect items closely, and try things on or test them out before buying. Dealing locally can also reduce shipping costs and lessen instances of fraud.

SmartBride Boutique is similar to craigslist and kijiji, but focuses solely on items for weddings. We like to think of it as the difference between a grocery store and a fancy bakery, or big box store to a specialty boutique. By narrowing the scope of the site, SmartBride Boutique can offer specific search tools and advice when buying and selling wedding items. SmartBride requires pertinent information from a seller when listing their item such as size, colour, alterations and any damages which is then used to help buyers find their perfect item quickly and easily.

For example, when searching for a wedding dress, you may only want to look at dresses of a certain designer, size range, price range, silhouette, neckline and condition. SmartBride Boutique allows you to narrow your search so you see only the items applicable to you rather than sifting through hundreds of listings. You can also create Saved Searches or use RSS feeds to be notified when items matching your criteria become available.

Q. Will SmartBride Boutique expand to other cities in Canada and the United States?

Yes! If you'd like to request that we launch in your city, send us a quick email at info@smartbrideboutique.com.


Getting Started

Q. Do I need an account?

You will need to sign up for a free account if you wish to:

  • List an item for sale
  • Contact the seller of an item for sale
  • Sell items from your retail store
  • Sign up for our email newsletter

Q. What is my username?

If you are logged in, you can find your username within your 'My SmartBride' dashboard under the 'My Account' tab. If you are not logged in, click on the sign in link on the top right hand corner of the site and then click on "I forgot my username".

Q. I forgot my password, can you reset it?

Don't worry! It happens to the best of us. Click here to go to the sign in page where you can click on "Forgot Your Password?"

Q. I didn't receive a confirmation email! What do I do?

First, check your spam folder. Some email clients are slightly over zealous with their spam filtering. Next, be sure to add SmartBrideBoutique.com to your email client's "safe senders" list.

If you still haven't received your confirmation email after 15 minutes please contact us at info@smartbrideboutique.com


My Account

Q. How do I change my password?

First, click on 'My SmartBride' and then on the 'My Account' tab. You will need to enter your old password and your new password and then click the "save changes" button at the bottom of the page.

Q. Can I change the email address associated with my SmartBride Boutique account?

Of course you can! First, click on 'My SmartBride' and then on 'My Profile'. Update your email address field, and then click the "save changes" button at the bottom of the page.

Q. How do I unsubscribe from the SmartBride Boutique mailing list?

First, click on 'My SmartBride' and then on 'My Account'. From there, uncheck the box beside "Yes, please send me the SmartBride Boutique e-newsletter". We're sorry to see you go!

Q. Can I delete my account?

Please contact us directly at info@smartbrideboutique.com to delete your account.


Site Features

Q. How do I select the city or area I would like to search?

When you first visit the site, you can select a city or area by clicking the 'select a location' link located in the "Buy" box on the homepage. If at any time you would like to select a different location, you can click the "change" link beside the name of your currently selected city or area in the upper right hand corner or the page.

If you are not limiting your search locally, you can also search items from an entire province, country, or all listings worldwide.

Q. Can I view items from all cities?

Yes. On the homepage, you can elect to view all listings worldwide using the "select a location" link in the "Buy Box" or top right hand corner of the site.

Q. How do I search for an item on the site?

Begin by selecting your prefered location using the location selector in the top right hand corner of the page (to the right of the search bar) or from the "Buy" box on the homepage. Then, you can choose to:

Browse: You can browse through all the listings within a category by clicking on the light blue buttons such as "Wedding Dresses", "Bridesmaids", "Shoes", "Jewelry", "Decorations", "Veils", "Accessories", "Free" or any of the categories under the "More" drop down list. Here you will find all items arranged with the most recent listings at the top. You can also sort listings by price, date listed and designer.

Search: If you are looking for a specific item, you can use the "Search" bar at the top of every page. Type a keyword, and then select a category from the drop down menu. You can also choose to search all categories. Click "Search".

Refine Your Search: When viewing search results, you have the option to refine your search using the "Refine my Search" box above the results.

Advanced Search/Saved Search: Click on the 'Saved Search' icon from anywhere on the site and you will be redirected to the advanced search form. Here, you can start refining your search using multiple criteria, from size and price to designer, silhouette and colour. Once you've chosen the criteria you're looking for, you can save that search, view any items matching the search at any time, AND have new items matching your search criteria emailed to you daily! Items sell very quickly, so we recommend setting up saved searches for all items you are looking for. That way, you'll never miss an item.

Q. What is a Saved Search?

Saved Search is our most advanced search function, created to save you time and ensure you never miss out on items that fit your criteria. Saved search allows you to create and save specific search criteria which you can reuse each time you visit the site. Once you save your search, you can replicate the search results from the 'Saved Searches' tab of your 'My SmartBride' dashboard. New items matching your criteria will also be emailed to you daily. If you wish, you can elect not to receive these emails.

Q. How do I create or view a saved search?

Throughout the site you will come across the saved search icon. When you click on the icon you will be redirected to the advanced search form. From here you can specify what type of item that you are looking for and then select all the specific criteria for the item. For example, you can select the color, size, neckline, silhouette and designer to let us know you are looking for an ivory or white wedding dress between sizes 6 and 10 with a sweetheart neckline and A-line silhouette by Vera Wang or Maggie Sottero or Melissa Sweet.

Create a Saved Search: Fill out the advanced search form, give your search a name, and then click "Save this Search" at the bottom of the page.

View a Saved Search: You can view the results of your search at any time by clicking on the name you've given you search within the 'Saved Searches' tab of your 'My SmartBride' dashboard.

Q. Can you alert me when new items I'm searching for are listed?

It would be our pleasure. You can create as many 'Saved Searches' as you wish. Once you've created a 'Saved Search' with all of your criteria, we'll email you each morning with new items matching your criteria. If there are no items matching your searches, you will not receive an email.

Q. How do I favorite an item?

You can favorite an item by clicking on the favorite icon on the search results page, or on an individual listing. To see items you've favorited, click on the 'Favorites' tab in your 'My SmartBride' dashboard.

Q. What is RSS?

RSS (Really Simple Syndication) allows you to easily stay informed by retrieving the latest content from websites you are interested in. Instead of visiting websites every day, you can compile RSS feeds from various websites into one RSS feed reader (we like Google Reader). Each day you can read what's new in all in one place, and click on articles or items you want to read.

The SmartBride Boutique website allows you to create an RSS feed for entire categories, or specific searches on the site so you never miss out on new items you're looking for. Once you have entered your search criteria in the "refine my search" box on the category main page, click search. Then click on the orange RSS icon above the "refine my search" box. You'll have a choice of which RSS reader you want to use.

If you prefer, you can also have items e-mailed to you by using our most advanced search called "Saved Searches".


Testimonials

Q. I'd like to share how SmartBride Boutique helped me create the wedding of my dreams, who should I talk to?

Great! We'd love to hear your story. Send us a quick email at info@smartbrideboutique.com and we'll get back to you by phone or email depending on your preference.


Advertisers, Vendors and Retailers

Q. Can I advertise my business on SmartBride Boutique?

Yes. For more information, please visit Advertise with SmartBride Boutique. We currently display IAB standard advertising banners (300x250, 160x600 and 728x90) and are open to integrated opportunities.

Q. Where can I list a link to and information about the wedding services I provide?

SmartBride Boutique is creating a vendor directory for service providers across the continent. Please email advertise@smartbrideboutique.com if you are interested in participating in this program. We kindly ask that you do not post this type of listing within the classifieds and reserve the right to remove any such listings at our discretion.

Q. Can I post regularly priced wedding items from my store?

Not at this time. Please visit our FAQs for retailers for more information.


Report Abuse

Q. What do I do if I find an item in the wrong category, or the doesn't belong?

Click on the "report this item" link underneath the thumbnail pictures on the item page. This will send an email directly to us and we can then re-arrange the item to its proper place, or delete it if necessary.

Q. Where can I report a buyer or seller who has attempted to defraud me?

First, if you have divulged any banking, credit card or information related to your PayPal account, contact your bank, credit card company or PayPal directly without delay. Secondly, report the crime using the following services:

  • Canada PhoneBusters hotline: 888-495-8501
  • Internet Fraud Complaint Center www.ic3.gov
  • US Federal Trade Commission toll free hotline (if either party is a US citizen): 877-382-4357
  • Non-emergency number for your local police department.
Lastly, if you suspect that an item listed for sale, or a potential buyer on SmartBride Boutique may be part of a scam, please contact us with the details at report@smartbrideboutique.com. Please include all correspondence you have had with the party plus the URL of the item in question.

Q. How can I avoid being involved with a fraudulent buyer or seller?

For more information on staying safe online, visit our Fraud FAQs.

Firstly, do not respond to messages or inquiries:

  • written in poor English
  • asking questions that are already clearly stated in your item description like price and size
  • from buyers who ask you to ship your item sight unseen
  • that suggest the buyer will pay by cashier's cheque, wire transfer, western union or mailing a personal cheque
  • that offer you more than the value of your item
These are all signs of potential scams and fraud. You will avoid almost every fraud attempt if you follow these simple rules:
  • DEAL LOCALLY with people you can meet in person. If a buyer or seller is not willing to meet, chances are it's a scam. Wedding purchases are important and few people will purchase without seeing the item first and/or trying it on (if applicable).
  • NEVER WIRE FUNDS via Western Union, Moneygram or any other wire service
  • FAKE CASHIER CHECKS & MONEY ORDERS ARE COMMON. You should note that banks will cash them, and you may be held responsible after the fact.
  • NEVER GIVE OUT FINANCIAL INFORMATION (bank account number, social security number, ebay/PayPal info, etc.)
  • AVOID DEALS INVOLVING SHIPPING OR ESCROW SERVICES

Q. What should I do if I suspect a buyer or seller is fraudulent?

For more information on staying safe online, visit our Fraud FAQs.


Protecting Yourself from Online Fraud


Q. How can I avoid being involved with a fraudulent buyer or seller?

Firstly, do not respond to messages or inquiries:

  • written in poor English
  • asking questions that are already clearly stated in your item description like price and size
  • from buyers who ask you to ship your item
  • that suggest the buyer will pay by cashier's cheque, wire transfer, western union or mailing a personal cheque
  • that offer you more than the value of your item and ask you to send the extra money

These are all signs of potential scams and fraud. You will avoid almost every fraud attempt if you follow these simple rules:

  • DEAL LOCALLY with women you can meet in person. If a buyer or seller is not willing to meet, chances are it's a scam. Wedding purchases are important and few people will purchase without seeing the item if not trying it on.
  • NEVER WIRE FUNDS via Western Union, Moneygram or any other wire service
  • FAKE CASHIER CHECKS & MONEY ORDERS ARE COMMON. You should note that banks will cash them, and you may be held responsible after the fact.
  • NEVER GIVE OUT FINANCIAL INFORMATION (bank account number, social security number, ebay/PayPal info, etc.)
  • AVOID DEALS INVOLVING SHIPPING OR ESCROW SERVICES

Q. I've been offered a cashier's cheque and the buyer wants me to ship the item, is this a scam?

This is one of the most common scams associated with classifieds sites. A potential buyer will offer a very genuine-looking cashier's cheque. Make no mistake, THIS CHEQUE IS FAKE. Not every initial email with this scam will look the same, but here are some specifics to watch for:

  • You may receive an email offering to buy your item sight unseen with a cashier's cheque.
  • The value of the cashier's check often far exceeds your item and the scammer offers to "trust" you, and asks you to wire the balance via money transfer service
  • Scammer will likely ask you to involve a 3rd party like a shipping agent
  • Scammer will demand for your name, address, etc for printing on the fake cheque

Q. How does the counterfeit cashier's cheque scam work?

Here's how it works according to the Internet Crime Complaint Center:

The counterfeit cashier's check scheme targets individuals that use Internet classified advertisements to sell merchandise. Typically, an interested party located outside the United States contacts a seller. The seller is told that the buyer has an associate in the United States that owes him money. As such, he will have the associate send the seller a cashier's check for the amount owed to the buyer.

The amount of the cashier's check will be thousands of dollars more than the price of the merchandise and the seller is told the excess amount will be used to pay the shipping costs associated with getting the merchandise to his location. The seller is instructed to deposit the check, and as soon as it clears, to wire the excess funds back to the buyer or to another associate identified as a shipping agent. In most instances, the money is sent to locations in West Africa (Nigeria).

Because a cashier's check is used, a bank will typically release the funds immediately, or after a one or two day hold. Falsely believing the check has cleared, the seller wires the money as instructed.

In some cases, the buyer is able to convince the seller that some circumstance has arisen that necessitates the cancellation of the sale, and is successful in conning the victim into sending the remainder of the money. Shortly thereafter, the victim's bank notifies him that the check was fraudulent, and the bank is holding the victim responsible for the full amount of the check.

Q. What other kinds of scams should be aware of?

For full descriptions of other well known internet scams, please visit: http://www.ic3.gov/crimeschemes.aspx

Here are a few brief descriptions of scams to watch out for:

  • Someone may claim that SmartBride Boutique will guarantee a transaction, certify a buyer/seller, OR claims that SmartBride Boutique will handle or provide protection for a payment. This is certainly a scam, SmartBride Boutique DOES NOT ASSIST OR PROVIDE ANY PAYMENT TRANSACTIONS. Please notify us immediately if you receive a message or any official looking email apparently from SmartBride stating this.
  • A buyer requests you to accept a cashier's cheque, especially if it is above the specified sale price. The cheque is FAKE! We suggest never to accept a cashier's cheque, especially from a distant buyer.
  • A seller requests wire service payment via Western Union or MoneyGram. Note there is no such thing as a confirmation code required to withdraw the money. Once you wire it, it is gone. These deals are often too good to be true. Ie. the price is way below what it should be.
  • A seller asks for a partial payment upfront, after which he will ship goods.

Q. What do I do if I receive an email from a scammer? Who do I report this to?

First, if you have divulged any banking, credit card or information related to your PayPal account, contact your bank, credit card company or PayPal directly without delay. Secondly, report the crime using the following services:

Lastly, if you suspect that an item posted for sale, or a potential buyer on SmartBride Boutique may be part of a scam, please contact us with the details at report@smartbrideboutique.ca. Please include all correspondence you have had with the party plus the URL of the item in question.

Q. What do I do if I've given personal information to a scammer?

If you have divulged any banking, credit card or information related to your PayPal account, contact your bank, credit card company or PayPal directly without delay.

Q. Do you have a sample email from a scammer I can compare with one I received?

Yes, here are a few emails received by SmartBride users. You'll note that the quality of the English is quite poor in most, but not all. Watch for lots of questions which are already stated in your post, buyers attempting to create a sense of urgency, and anyone proposing alternate shipping and payment arrangements.
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Hello Seller, I read through the description of this Item and i will like to know if it is still available for sale, how long as it been owned and the final buy it now price, i will make shipping arrangements myself once we have agreed on a price... Get back to me with the questions asked and your Full name and contact address so that i can issue the payment out to you overnight via Fedex on Tomorrow..you can send pictures or more description for me to be sure this is exactly what i`m looking for..
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I came across your item and I'll like to know the following questions regarding the item. Q#1.. How long have you owned it? Q#2. a) Have you owned it from new? b) If not how many previous owner? Q#3. Why are you selling it? Q#4. In your opinion, what sort of condition is it? Q#5. Any available photo? Q#6. How much are you asking for it? Q#7. Do you accept a ( Cashier Check / postal Money Order with check) as a mode of payment. Q#8. Kindly get back to me with ur FULL NAME,FULL Address also your phone number so that i can call you soon as the payment sent. Thanks
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Hello Sarah,
Thank you for responding.I am very pleased with your respond the item and i do wish to seal up the deal as soon as possible. The price is acceptable and the conditions are favorable. The item will be picked up from your location and i will send the shipment details and informations to you in my subsequent correspondence .But before we can proceed, I want you to get back to me with your contact informations which includes your name, address and phone number so that payment can be sent to you. Get back to me with the requested informations and have a splendid day.
Regards
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Hello,
I am the fiance to the bride who contacted you earlier about the your wedding dress and now she currently on a trip to the family house for the wedding preparation cause that is where the wedding is going to take place,i will be handling this transaction now...... My mode of payment will then be via Bank Certified Check cause i will not be able to come over to hand you cash but once you have your cash at hand you will be shipping the dress to the bride,an $100 will be included to your asking price for the shipment fund via Express Mail Service(EMS or USPS). ..So kindly reply me with your full name and address with a valid phone number to send the check,if you are ok with my mode of payment you can have the posting off Cl....
Sucre Tkach
24241 88th ave s apt#Aa 103
Kent WA 98031
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Hello,

Thanks for your prompt reply.I really appreciate your detailed breakdown on this. Unfortunately, I'm on my way to Turkey on an official trip (I'm a marketing Executive) and won't be back for some weeks, and my wedding will be coming up on 23-24/ April. I would have come to inspect the Dress personally, but i'm taking your word for true on It though . I'm okay with the price, I think it worth it anyway. I will be paying you securely with a cashier's check which will be payable to your name.. I want to buy it quickly! before some one else grabs it. So, I'll arrange to send your payment ASAP.

However, I'll have to notify my party planner who's helping me to organize all the necessary things we need for the wedding. He will be the one to pick up the Dress from you and some other things we need for the wedding as well as soon as you have receive payment because I MIGHT be delayed in Turkey depending on how things goes. All you need to do now, is to quickly get back to me with Information where the payment can reach you at I:E Full Name Standard Address phone number/cell number So I can get the check prepared and have it sent out to you ASAP..

Regards.

M.Stockdale..