McElhinneys take on global giants for top award

McElhinney's of Ballybofey

McElhinney’s of Ballybofey

THE family-run McElhinney’s of Ballybofey has been shortlisted alongside some of the biggest companies on the planet for a prestigious international e-Commerce award.

The department store’s website will contest next month’s finals of The Drum Search Awards in London in the ‘Most Innovative Search Campaign SEO and PPC’ category.


They will go head-to-head against global brands such as Toyota and their Super Bowl 2016 campaign, Heineken for their Rugby World Cup promotion as well as Virgin and Stena Line. Toyota’s digital agency is none other than international advertising and marketing giant, Saatchi & Saatchi, Los Angeles.

The awards bring together the best individuals and companies at the forefront of internet search and Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising.

The theme of the McElhinney’s entry – ‘from Silicon Valley to Ballybofey’ – tells the story of how the family dramatically grew their online revenues, utilising the most advanced digital marketing strategies and technologies available.

Ms Roisin Woods, Senior Manager for eCommerce and Marketing at McElhinneys, said Irish regional independent retailers can lead the way nationally and internationally.

“To be announced as finalists for Most Innovative Search Campaign at The Drum Awards is simply amazing. The fact that we are shortlisted alongside global brands such as Toyota and Heineken demonstrates how much we have grown since launching our website in 2012.”

She has also been appointed Chairperson for the Retail Excellence Ireland (REI) eCommerce Committee 2016, sits on the board of REI and will present Ireland as a judge at the eCommerce awards in Barcelona at the end of the month.

McElhinney’s have won numerous eCommerce awards in the past four years, the latest in February for Best Search Marketing Campaign 2015 alongside their digital partner, Wolfgang Digital.  


Mr Alan Colman of Wolfgang said: “We have worked alongside Roisin and the McElhinney’s team for several years now and what they have achieved is outstanding. It’s brilliant to see an Irish retailer such as McElhinneys make the shortlist in such a prestigious international awards.”

McElhinney’s have shipped to over 63 countries since launching their online business, creating up to ten new positions. More jobs are expected later this year when work is completed on a €2.2 million, four-storey extension to their landmark store.

The massive new development will be used primarily for their internet sales business.

Founded by John McElhinney in 1971, the store now employs more than 180 full and part-time staff and is a major draw to the Twin Towns.

Over the years, the department store has grown and now operates from a 90,000 sq ft building, and has more than 1,500 suppliers, many of which are Irish.

While his son, Martin, is the General Manager, John McElhinney is still actively involved in the day-to-day running of the business.

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