Continue the Experience with a Matching Website

Page 139 of the book Priceless: Turning Ordinary Products into Extraordinary Experiences used the store Home Depot as an example. Home Depot does something quite cool – their physical store and their website match. Have you ever noticed this? I hadn’t until I read about it, but it’s true! The physical store has wide aisles, helpful people everywhere, frequent sales posted around the store, lots of products, information about those products, and how-to-do-it classes. The website does the same thing: part of the website header includes a smiling employee (plus “Customer Support” is easy to find); the site uses lots of white space, thus mimicking those big aisles at the actual store; you quickly see a clearance ad for sales, you can shop, and they offer a huge “Know-How” section that teaches the same stuff as their in-store classes.

Libraries can do this, too. Think about things like your collection development policy, for starters. Do you emphasize one type of collection over another, like business resources or romance novels? Then feature those online as well – and provide more than just a list of those books. Write articles about how to start a small business (using your books, databases, etc. as resources). Do a “if you like Danielle Steele, you’ll like…” type of book list, and provide direct links to those books in your library catalog. If your library has a logo and stylized signage around the building, use those same themes on your website.

Get the idea? Figure out what experiences people are having at your library, and find a way to continue those experiences online.