Hi I'm the Jason that emailed.
Yeah the user account should be optional and is intended to provide extra functionality to return customers and for me to maybe build up a wish list/short list of potential buys. And you would have visibility of the kind of knives people are interested in, so could potentially notify them when stock arrives for them.
Advanced search I didn't know about, but I do now!
Email updates - works well for me as I get email notifications on my phone/computer so you'd easily tempt me if these appeared in my inbox when new stock arrives. I do check your arrivals page but I feel a bit guilty when I check too regularly.