And look at what wikipedia has to say about Chick lit
Chick lit is genre fiction which addresses issues of modern womanhood, often humorously and lightheartedly.
... Although it sometimes includes romantic elements, chick lit is generally not considered a direct subcategory of the romance novel genre, because the heroine's relationship with her family or friends is often just as important as her romantic relationships.
... The issues dealt with are often more serious than consumerism.
So no, it's not only about buying shoes. :) Chick lit books can actually be quite serious. But to be honest I can understand why some people would think that Chick lit is equatable with books about shopping. When I hear the word chick, I think of a certain type of woman. In German I would translate chick with "Tussi" and that's not the most positive way to describe a woman. A Tussi is someone highly superficial, someone who mainly cares about how she looks and little else. So of course some people might think the same of books that are called Chick lit.
I have never liked the term Chick lit, because it only describes one part of what the books in the genre can be about. IMO it concentrates too much on the superficial stuff and it sells the genre short. But what other term should I use? Women's fiction? Not really, I just think it sounds a bit constrained. Maybe Women's lit? Wlit? Or something that sounds a bit cooler? I like that the genre name gives you a first idea about what the books are going to be about, maybe that's why just using "Literature" as a label for Chick lit books isn't enough for me.
What do you think when you hear Chick lit? Can you think of a better and nicer term for the books from this genre?