Thursday, April 25, 2013

Have you shopped at the Better Homes & Gardens online store?

Last August, the venerable (92 years old) Better Homes & Gardens magazine, added a shop section to enabling it to sell the products it recommends in its magazine and website to consumers.  With over 500,000 products available and 5.6 million monthly visitors it is well on its way to becoming an e-commerce powerhouse.  In fact the site’s traffic is already on par with Victoria’s Secret, Cabela’s and HP Shopping. 

Janell Pittman, general manager for says “We are making it very easy for readers to buy what they see.”  (Enright, 2013)

It sounds like it.  So what do you think?  Will they buy?  And will marketers want to participate?

Enright, A.  (2013, April 24)  Magazines create their own form of e-retailing.  Retrieved April 24, 2013, from


  1. I think this idea is brilliant. Better Homes & Garden magazine has such a huge following that it makes sense for them to try to expand their revenue stream, while making it easy for their readers to purchase items in the magazine online. I believe it creates loyalty for its readers + allows retailers to get sales that they may not have gotten through traditional channel, even if they have to pay fees; I'm sure they're still making money. Now, I'm wondering if Instyle magazine is doing this. I read the book, rip out pages of websites to visit and then go online and visit each website individually. I would rather just go to and purchase there. Before class, I'll check to see if Instyle has something similar.

  2. I have never bought anything from nor do I subscribe to their magazine. I do however do about 80% of my shopping - where possible - online. In my view, I find it hard that their just entering this arena. Having a 92 year old brand creates has tremendous brand value in the mind of the consumers so product recommendations simply makes sense. In a sense they are becoming a Consumer Reports only with the actual power now to purchase specific recommendations. Offering over 500,000 products is huge and not maintaining actual inventory is a plus for them. The fee per click/commission model keeps their overhead very while and at the same time can scale with additional products - only increasing margins. I'm of the opinion that making the switch from print magazine to etailer has more legs than etailers turning publisher. BHG has a tremendous advantage many of their competitors don't have - a loyal following.

  3. absolutely! Its like when you walk into a furniture store and everything looks so good together that you buy the whole scene just the way it is. It is great idea and for someone like me that loves interior design, being able to locate and purchase these products with ease is a great feature. I think anywhere there are a large amount of consumers, the advertisers and marketers will follow.

  4. If the 5.6 million visitors buy something then this is a brilliant idea. This seems like the Home Shopping Network for magazines. I do not subscribe to Better Homes and Gardens magazine but my mother does so I've seen it. Now this will make it easier for her to purchase something that she likes instead of ripping out the page and getting back to it.
    This certainly is cost effective for the magazine not having to hold the inventory, why wouldn't other marketers follow.

    Susan DiBello

  5. ABSOLUTELY people will buy! Shopping online is a lot about convenience, when you can purchase an item you see and want, directly from a magazine you enjoy reading, that is convenience at its best. I wouldn't be surprised if this becomes the new trend for all magazines (if it isn't already).

  6. I think this is a great idea and a smart way to modernize a somewhat older brand. I would be interested to see how much profit this system has actually generated for the better homes & gardens company itself. In a lot of ways, this seems like a successful model for magazines looking to expand their reach into e-commerce. How interesting that a 92 year old brand would be at the forefront of this shift...