1. Hit the stores after lunch
This will ensure the best fit, since your feet tend to swell throughout the day.
2. Be sure shoes are comfy from the start
Despite what the salesperson says, you really can't "break in" a pair of too-tight shoes.
3. Test them out
Take a stroll around the store, preferably on both carpeted and tile surfaces.
4. Don't be a slave to size
Focus on the fit rather than the number. Know your arches. If you have a high arch, your shoes should have a cushioned midsole to absorb shock. Flatter feet require a firmer, more supportive midsole.
5. Flex and bend
Opt for a flexible leather or rubber sole over a rigid one, which won't allow your feet to move naturally as you walk.