Cheap glasses website focuses on the high street

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Online glasses and sunglass retailer,, is opening its first ‘bricks and mortar’ store in a bid to bring its ‘cheapest glasses in the world’ offering to its offline consumers from 23 April.

Currently one of the leading retailers for cheap glasses online, offers a range of eyewear including both own brand and designer specs. Visitors to its site will find some of the most competitive prices in the world for items such as cheap ray bans, geek glasses and rimless glasses.

Its expansion onto the high street in Westgate-on-Sea, Kent, is part of the upcoming trend to combine online content with an engaging in-store experience. While offering consumers the same great value and enticing discounts, the store will allow people who aren’t confident in purchasing online to try before they buy.

In-store computer terminals will showcase the extensive online range, and frames not available in the shop can be called in for customers to try. Trained staff will be on hand to offer advice, with orders processed and delivered direct to the customer at home, unlike many opticians who demand collection. Customers’ details are then stored so that they can easily place repeat or additional orders online at any time. An optometrist will be available in store offering comprehensive eye examinations using the latest technologies.

David McMillan who founded online spectacle and sunglasses giant, in 2005, said: “The decision to open a shop on the high street stemmed from our observation that digital content has reached a new level of consumer influence. To stay ahead of the competition our future growth strategy had to combine both clicks and bricks; a multi-channel approach rather than a pure online offer.

“Building brand equity online has been our key objective, with huge investments in SEO, PPC, marketing and PR to improve search results and drive traffic to the site. But channel-hopping is becoming the ‘new normal’ for today’s Internet-savvy shopper so we envisage a high proportion of high street sales coming from this consumer sector as they will use the store as a showroom for online purchases. The intention is to increase brand exposure and sales by making the shopping experience more enjoyable and convenient than ever, both online and in-store.”

This type of activity has already been witnessed by leading consumer brands, Hotel Chocolat, Amazon and eBay, and is supported by Professor Joshua Bamfield, Director of the Centre for Retail Research.

He said: “This is a reasonable strategy as a significant proportion of online retailers are likely to have a high street presence over the next three to four years. Multi-channel retailing is now seen as part of the upcoming trend and SelectSpecs will be at the leading edge of this growth strategy.” has one of the largest ranges of glasses and cheap sunglasses on the market, boasting 40,000 styles of frames online. This, combined with its unique offering of the ‘world’s cheapest prescription glasses range’ at a mere £6, has firmly positioned the company at the top of its game with an average of 200,000 website visits per month.

David continues: “With the convergence of bricks and mortar with online and mobile channels, there is a new era of retailing. Customers are using both online and offline channels and our business structure must keep up with the pace of change and continually strive for better.”

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Aneela Rose
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