Lithys 2016: Petco - Community Design of the Year

Lithys 2016: Petco - Community Design of the Year

brand-logo.pngCompany: Petco

Contact: Melanie Morrill (Mgr, Social Media and Content)

Community: Petco Community

Lithy category: Community Design of the Year


With more than 50 years of service to pet parents, Petco is a leading pet specialty retailer that focuses on nurturing powerful relationships between people and pets. We do this by providing the products, services, advice and experiences that keep pets physically fit, mentally alert, socially engaged and emotionally happy.


Our community goals


Our goal is to establish Petco digital properties as the “go-to” source for pet care news, customer support, social commerce, education, information and fun. The Petco Community delivers on “The Power of Together” by creating and showcasing high-value, Petco-branded content that resonates with the communities we serve. We aim to engage and empower pet parents to enrich their pets’ lives.


The design elements that make our community unique 


The Petco Community is a branded content hub where pet parents and animal lovers can connect, share pet stories, find solutions to pet care issues and more. The Community platform, with a new look and feel and a dramatically improved user experience, enables us to more effectively and efficiently engage, support and market to current and prospective customers. The design elements that make our community unique are the rich content immersion from our home page and throughout the community, and dynamic content recommendation at the blog level.


To Petco, the community is more than just Q&A forum content. It’s about engaging with pet parents in rich, meaningful ways. Our goal was to strike an important balance between Petco-generated and user-generated content. For instance, on the home page, we developed large components that enabled Petco to feature beautiful, unique pet imagery to entice users to engage and to communicate our expertise, while at the same time balancing that against user-generated discussion content across all pet categories.


The Community offers a variety of content in every pet category—including dog, cat, fish, small animal, reptile and bird. You’ll also find:

  • Hundreds of blog posts (co-created and collaborative content written by SMEs, influencers, Petco partners, veterinarians, community super users and pet industry journalists)
  • More than 6,500 forum posts (where community members can ask questions and share their pet parent experiences)
  • A tribal knowledge base (where we provide the best answers to common questions)
  • Infographics, Petco videos, photos, contests and more


How we executed our community design


We leveraged Lithium’s strategy consulting and technical services groups to conceive, design and implement a customized experience. Strategy consulting worked with us from the ground up, identifying our core business needs and matching that with an achievable but differentiated community experience, one that propelled us from a standard forum design to a rich, compelling community we could be proud of. Next, they worked hand-in-hand with their development team to ensure that many of the customized experiences we wanted could be executed on-time and within budget. Lastly, they continued to engage with us after implementation to make tweaks and improvements to the experience. In fact, we continue to work with them to convert the community to a responsive experience in the coming months.


Our metrics


All 2015 goals for the community were exceeded post community redesign launch.


Traffic Totals for FY15:

  • 62% increase YOY Total Page Views: 3,942,000 (FY14: 2,430,000)
  • 68% increase YOY Visits: 2,852,000 (FY14: 1,702,000)
  • 65% increase YOY Unique visitors: 2,533,000 (FY14: 1,538,000)
  • 28% increase YOY Total Registered Member: 15,008 (FY14: 11,726)
  • 22% increase YOY Completed registrations: 3,282 (FY14: 2,685)





1 Comment

Petco is awesome!! Continuous improvement to help our pets have better and longer lives.