Uninspiring product and uncompetitive prices - Jones Bootmaker struggles to hold its own.
- Arndale Centre
Overall the product is uninspiring, with the women’s offer mostly sensible ballet-style pumps (although the range of pump designs is broad). Some gladiator sandals and wedges with cork heels indicate a more summery vibe, but again the design is lacklustre. For men, cheery espadrilles from Ted Baker are the only real indication it’s spring, as the product is mostly limited to very traditional brogue or lace-up styles in dark colours.
Women get ballet pumps at around £75 with nice leather uppers and insoles, but Clarks has cheaper options at a similar quality level. Basic leather ankle boots for £89 seem steep, as an almost identical product is available in Topshop for £40. Men’s styles range from £99 for Jones’ own-brand brogues up to £230 for Cheaney shoes; a good price range, although nothing jumps out in design terms. Compared with competitors, Jones lags behind on value, as it doesn’t beat direct competitor Clarks on quality or price and certainly can’t compete with the rest of the high street when it comes to design inspiration.
The shop is well laid out, with proper seats instead of just stools and a generally inviting atmosphere, if a little uninspiring. The window is overcrowded but shows a good range from heels to flats to sandals, although the men’s offering is limited. Merchandising in the shop is fairly strong, with tablet cases displayed among work shoes to encourage add-on purchases and a good range of general accessories.