Agency: Ridgeway

The Challenge

hmv is a long standing British retailer that has been at the forefront of the music, film, and games industry for over 90 years.

Taking its first major steps into ecommerce with a loyal following, hmv was looking to bring its in-store experience to the online market. They needed to showcase thousands of products with best practice UX design and fast page load times to cope with huge levels of traffic across peak periods. hmv needed a secure platform that could handle millions of pounds worth of orders and could cater for the evolving needs of the business.

The Strategy

Simplicity was key in showcasing hmv’s many products. Ridgeway achieved this through a clean, uncluttered interface with hero imagery of striking album artwork and photography. Clear and prominent calls to action and navigation arrows are visible in the brand’s pink on the homepage slider encouraging users to navigate between slides and pages to engage with more products.

The agency developed an omnichannel experience by introducing Click and Collect, and enabling customers to collect loyalty hmvpoints online for consistency no matter where the customer interacts with the brand.

Stocking over 18,000 CD, 3000 vinyl, 16,000 DVD, and 5000 Blu-ray products, the site is optimised to load the huge number of products quickly, with pages responding in less than two seconds. With almost 82,000 pages and 44,500 SKUs, Kentico offers an ideal, technically robust platform to cope with a site of this size whilst delivering great site speed and performance.

Stability is ensured without the cost of extra Kentico licences by using high capacity servers with an optimised database cluster and extra memory to deliver content at high speed. Ridgeway’s Ecommerce Accelerator product provides enhanced functionality over the core Kentico product, enabling us to deliver the project faster and at lower cost than our competitors.

The site was developed to be as flexible as possible for the hmv team so that they can amend content simply via the easy-to-use CMS and keep the thousands of products and promotions up to date quickly and efficiently. Ridgeway optimised this functionality, enabling new content to be pulled from a third party feed, completely automated, and categorised so that the client only needs to publish the content, saving time and administrative overheads.


The Results

From a standing start the website has delivered and is going from strength to strength.

From October 2016 to February 2017 compared with the same period in the previous year the site has achieved a 67 per cent increase in transactions, 76 per cent increase in revenue and a 69 per cent increase in basket size.

Mobile and tablets have also seen a massive uplift with transactions increasing by an impressive 101 per cent.


The hmv site has won an Ecommerce Award  for Excellence in the ‘Best Electronics, Computing, DVD, Film, Games, Music & Toys eCommerce’ category in September 2016. The site has also won ‘Best Ecommerce Site’ and ‘Largest Site of the Year’ in the Kentico Site of the Year awards in March 2016.