A retail blog can be an effective way to engage customers, improve branding, and boost traffic.
Blogs give retail sites content that may be linked to or shared across social networks, via email, or through search engines. Customers who find blog posts informative, entertaining, or helpful may be more likely to make purchases from the merchant responsible for those posts.
During a recent webinar, Thomas Hynes, PR Newswire’s manager of blogger relations, encouraged businesses that were going to use a blog as a form of marketing to, among other suggestions, (1) grab the reader’s attention quickly, (2) have an angle or a perspective, if you will, about what is being written, and (3) know the audience.
What follows are ten examples of retail blogs that in one way or another exemplify Hynes’ suggested best practices.
Mr. Porter’s Journal
The Journal on the Mr. Porter site is at the high-end of business blogging, and may be described as a full on web magazine. The Journal gets readers attention with articles that are specific to the products the company sells and the lifestyle it represents. See the “How to Lace Your New Boots” article as a good example.
The Blender, A Williams-Sonoma Blog
The Blender is the blog of Williams-Sonoma, the kitchen product retailer. The Blender’s articles, which are almost always food related, are aimed frequently at helping readers improve their cooking skills, which is just the right perspective for this merchant’s products.
The Roxy Blog
The Roxy Blog aims its content at potential customers, including youthful music and popular culture. As an example, the blog recently published a track from indie-country-alternative band Night Moves.
Like Your Life
Like Your Life is the blog for American Eagle Outfitters. As the blog’s name implies, Like Your Life serves up lifestyle articles aimed at engaging a typical American Eagle shopper.
Jinx is a retailer, selling video games and, well, nerd-themed tees and other clothing. The merchant’s blog includes descriptions of video game action, information about the company, and outtakes from photo shoots that frequently include gaming celebrities. The blog is written to directly address readers and is loaded with pictures and video game screen captures.
The Home Depot Blog
Home Depot, which is one of the leading multi-channel home improvement retailers, uses its blog to offer shoppers how-to information for a board variety of home projects. As an example, check out the article “Trick Out Your Tailgating Cooler With Wheels.”
Quiksilver’s blog is a source of much multimedia content, including videos, interviews, and event details. This is another example of a blog that connects with its audience.
Imogene + Willie Blog
There is certainly no shortage of photographs on fashion retailer Imogene + Willie’s blog. In fact, even posts that are devoted to new products tend to look like a spread in a fashion magazine.
Element14 is a technophile’s toy store, selling Arduino boards, RaspberryPi single-board computers, and other electronic components. The site’s blog serves its community well.
Want to learn about the Paris Fashion Week? The Thread, Nordstrom’s fashion blog, does nearly as good of a job as some professional publications.