Fairfax Media revamps e-commerce platforms to create The Store by Fairfax

Fairfax Media has overhauled its existing e-commerce platform currently branded as The Sydney Morning Herald Shop and The Age Shop to create The Store by Fairfax.


Fairfax Media recruited Trudi Jenkins, who joined the company in May as digital commerce director, to lead the overhaul efforts.

Jenkins has a mixed background having worked in both magazines and in e-commerce. She previously worked as editor-in-chief of Delicious magazine from August 2001 to November 2012 and has spent 11 months as a consultant with Redballoon Australia. Jenkins is also the director of, a strategy, content and design company.

“I was brought on board to look at the existing SMH and The Age Shops and how we could refresh them. We’ve come up with the slightly brand agnostic The Store by Fairfax so that we can market it as a destination and send all the traffic to one URL,” Jenkins explained.

“The opportunity in online retail spend in Australia in 2015 was $17.6b. If just 5% of our current audience spent $50 once a year with us, the revenue coming into The Store would be $32m. It’s quite a compelling opportunity.”

The overhaul of the platform has seen Fairfax Media draw on a number of curators well known to Fairfax readers to help develop the items available for sale.

The curators include: Karen McCartney, director at and author of architecture and design books; David Clark, former editor-in-chief of Vogue Living; Melissa Singer, The Age fashion and lifestyle director; Alex McCulloch, art consultant; Nadine Bush, group creative director Durie Design; Barbara Hermon, design consultant; Inez Garcia, fashion director and stylist; Neil Perry, chef.

“It’s a curated marketplace, drop ship model. So we don’t buy or warehouse any stock. It’s basically a marketing platform if you like for our various sellers,” Jenkins said.

“The product mix is a bit different from what was on the previous shops, it’s much more highly curated. I felt the existing mix was a little bit random. I wanted it to have a little bit more design-focus. It’s very much in that boutique, artisan, Australian-design space. It’s supporting Australian designers and artists.”

The Store by Fairfax is being promoted with a print campaign, created in-house, which rolls out tomorrow.


“We’re focusing on the people, it’s about these amazing, skilled craftspeople, artists and designers and the stories behind them,” Jenkins said.

Fairfax will also promote The Store with a digital campaign as well as across social media.

“We have a current Shop database of 60,000 that we will be targeting. We’ll also be targeting new visitors to sign up to that,” Jenkins said.

“We’ll be pitching in editorial opportunities. We can go to editorial anytime we think there is a great story that they might be interested in. There’s no compulsion on their part to run it though.”

On the database figure, Jenkins is keen to grow it.

“I’d like to double it as fast as I can and I don’t think that’s overly ambitious,” she said.

There is no advertising on The Store’s website.

“It needs to function first and foremost as a good e-commerce experience and it needs to feel premium and like a beautiful experience. I want people to get lost in the site, there will be videos they can watch and stories about the brands,” Jenkins said.

Fairfax Media will also offer its subscribers a 20% discount.


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