Researchers at ShopSmart magazine conducted a survey which reveals that nearly 30 percent of women in the U.S. report buying shoes at online retailers on a regular basis, a percentage that's just about doubled in the past four years.
Additionally, the activity may be therapeutic, as about 19 percent of respondents said they go shoe shopping to make themselves happier.
"Shoes never make your butt look big, you don't have to worry about squeezing into them if you've put on a couple of pounds, and they can instantly make you feel sexier. Maybe that's why, despite the economy, we're still buying shoes," said Lisa Lee Freeman, editor-in-chief of ShopSmart.
The one drawback to buying footwear on the web is that consumers are unable to try it on first. Moreover, poorly fitted shoes may exacerbate bunions or hammer toe. As such, shoppers may want to look for websites with free returns or exchanges, or stick with a particular trusted brand.