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JT Hughes Group launches into online retail platform development

John Hughes, managing director of the JT Hughes Group, pictured with sales director Paul Tench aftersales director and Ian Jones

The JT Hughes Group has appointed a developer to create its own “bespoke” end-to-end online car retail platform for new and used cars.

The Shropshire-based car retail group has awarded a six-figure contract to digital agency Built For Now Limited to create the new platform, which will facilitate both new car sales and the end-to-end retail of its stock of 200 vehicles.

JT Hughes represents Honda, Hyundai and Mitsubishi in Shropshire and Mid-Wales.

Quoted by Shropshire Live, JT Hughes managing director, John Hughes, said: “Ultimately, our objective is to give customers the flexibility and control to buy their vehicle however they prefer, be it online, or from one of our dealerships, or a hybrid of both. 

“Contrary to popular belief, digital car buying is less about technology and more about people and strategy.

“We chose Built For Now as they have a proven track record in digital strategy, coupled with developing bespoke digital applications.”

A understands that JT Hughes’ new online car-buying platform will allow customers to secure a guaranteed part exchange valuation for their existing car and signs finance contracts digitally.

Customers will be able to take advantage of a home delivery or complete a handover, in person, at one of the group’s showrooms in Shrewsbury, Telford or Newtown (Mid-Wales).  

As long ago as 2017 JT Hughes Group trialled a new voice search function on its website after reviewing current consumer habits.

Commenting on the development of an end-to-end online retail solution for the group Nicky Spiteri, the managing director of Built For Now, said: “We are delighted to have been entrusted by the JT Hughes Group with the complete design, custom build and integration of their e-commerce strategy.

“Digital is not just a nice-to-have enabler of the automotive shopping experience; it is the new core of the automotive shopping experience.

“This is an exciting project, and we look forward to working in close partnership with JT Hughes over the next three years.”

In its latest full accounts, for the period to May 29, 2019, JT Hughes Group reported a 43.6% increase in turnover, from £62m to £89.1m, as profit before tax rose 14.3% to £579,462 (2018: £507,058).

The increases were partially attributed to the incorporation of its operation in Newtown into the business, bringing a 34% increase in sales turnover and £7m in overall revenue.

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