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Etail boom spurs store hunt at John Anthony

A surge in online sales has boosted trade at premium menswear independent John Anthony, which is looking to add another store to its five-strong portfolio.

Sales at the retailer’s bricks-and-mortar business are up about 2%, but it has also experienced a 350% uplift in internet sales in the nine months since it revamped its website.

John Anthony, which sells brands including Paul Smith, Lyle & Scott, D&G and Armani Jeans, has stores in a mixture of shopping centre and high street locations in Bath and Bristol in Somerset, Swindon in Wiltshire, Bournemouth in Dorset and Oxford.

Owner John Nooney said: “We’re managing to do fairly well, with sales up compared with last year. A lot of it was supported by the website which has done very well.”

The business relaunched its website nine months ago with a new EPoS system supplied by Eurostop which integrates sales and stock data from the store and the website. The site also got a new look, more product and increased functionality.

Nooney said: “A lot of the increase online is to do with the service the customer gets. The website has to be up to scratch.

“We do next-day delivery now and put product in a nice box with tissue paper. We send out more emails to people but we will also call them up if we don’t have something in stock, and you’d be surprised how pleased they are for someone to call them.”

John Anthony is scouting for a location in the south west to add an extra store of about 2,000sq ft to 3,000sq ft to its portfolio. However, Nooney said that despite the fact there are more empty units on the market as some retailers close, he was finding it difficult to find a suitable location.

“Everyone is talking about all these good deals the landlords are offering but it is difficult to find space in the places we want. We are looking to expand and hoping to open something before the end of the year,” he said.

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