Visitors to the site will not be able to buy goods they’d find in store. It is understood that HMV has accepted that it cannot compete with rivals such as Play.com, Apple and Spotify in the digital entertainment business.
Instead, HMV is offering a place for users to find information on new releases and older products, as well as on the company itself, aiming to build up a loyal community around the brand and drive them into its stores.
The site was created by Code Computerlove and replaces a holding site that has been live since Hilco bought HMV out of administration back in April. It has a strong focus on content curated by a new editorial team, with staff across its chain of stores also contributing.
It is dominated by music content at the moment, but it will broaden away from this to highlight the range of entertainment products, including games and movies, that HMV stores sell. It also integrates with HMV’s recently launched digital music store, providing 30-second track previews and allowing users to purchase digital downloads via 7digital.
Personalisation will also play a big role, with HMV hoping to learn what users are buying in store and looking at on its website in order to offer a tailored experience, such as news on local stores, favourite artists or upcoming movies. Users will be able to sign up through 7digital or HMV’s loyalty programme, pureHMV, which is set to relaunch later this week.
Further improvements to the site are also planned. A search function is in the works, as is a full product catalogue, while there will be more integration with downloads. However, there are no plans in place at the moment to start selling any physical products, such as CDs or DVDs.