Content that appeals to the target market represents one of a retailer’s main tools for getting their customers to engage with and become loyal to a brand. In a sector such as craft, the opportunities for providing ideas, inspiration and how-to tutorials are enormous, and this is something that superstore Hobbycraft has embraced wholeheartedly.
As the largest arts-and-crafts retailer in the UK, Hobbycraft is going all-out to exploit the burgeoning trend for home crafting, baking and making, and its craft blog forms a key part of its online offering. It contains hundreds of tutorials covering all many different crafts it supplies for, such as sewing, knitting, baking and papercraft, along with more niche crafts to try such as marbling and soap making. The level of advice ranges from basic step-by-steps to more complex projects.
Project ideas can be searched by discipline or by season, with posts on making advent trees, felt decorations or crochet stockings for Christmas, and Halloween squishies, slimes or pumpkin cakes. Kids’ projects can also be searched separately. A dropdown menu provides information on ‘what you will need’, ‘abbreviations’, ‘how to make’ and ‘shop the project’, allowing customers to add everything they need to their Hobbycraft shopping basket without leaving the page.
To encourage creativity and participation, customers are invited to add their finished items to the Hobbycraft online gallery by uploading a picture on the website or by posting it on Instagram or Twitter with the #Hobbycraft hashtag. There is also a Make of the Month competition, where followers who upload a picture of themselves and their make have a chance of winning a £100 Hobbycraft voucher.
The company, like its customers, is highly engaged with social media with a Facebook following of 301,482 and 71,000 followers on Instagram. Buttons for social media channels are prominently displayed at the bottom of every page.
Each project also has clearly displayed buttons for sharing on social media, providing yet another opportunity for customers to share their interests (as well as the Hobbycraft brand) across Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook, providing a seamless presence across social media.
The company further demonstrated its commitment to being a leading digital retailer when it launched a new Progressive Web App mobile website at the beginning of the year. This site leverages the latest mobile technology to create a fast-loading website that retains the look and the feel of an app.