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What should I send to my web designer for a new website?

You weighed your options and decided to sign up for AWG Sales Services to make a website for your store. Now what? Use this form to help you send us what we need to get started. You don’t need to fill out every blank spot, this form is more of a guide/checklist so big sections of content don’t get forgotten. This is meant to be a tool to help jog your mind and point out what your customers might be looking for once they get to your site. The first four spaces are the only required spaces so we can contact you if we have questions.


For almost 2 years now, I’ve occasionally heard the word “Gutenberg” mentioned at WordPress MeetUps and Events. When I saw a session at WordCamp last spring on the schedule about Gutenberg, I made sure to attend. What was talked about during this session, we were told, was mostly speculation. However, we were given a few links and videos to watch, which is what I want to share. If you are a retailer who has a website, this is my guess of what’s going through your head about now, “Why should I care about Gutenberg?” Well, Gutenberg is going to be used in the WordPress update 5.0 sometime in 2018. “Why should I care about WordPress?” If your store has a website, you might want to know if your website will be affected by Gutenberg. It’s also good to know that the chances of your website using WordPress is 1 out of 4. Do you have a WordPress site? If your not sure go to BuiltWith.com put in your domain name then hit “Lookup”. If you see “WordPress” in the list…

Mining Search Behavior

We all lie. Whether on surveys, in focus groups, or on social media platforms, there’s a story we’re all trying to present in a certain way. Tylor Hermanson, Manager of Search Solutions at Intouch Solutions, opened his recent KCDMA presentation on harnessing search behavior in all facets of marketing with that context. Hermanson referenced the book Everybody Lies: Big Data, New Data, and What the Internet Can Tell Us About Who We Really Are by Seth Stephens-Davidowitz. Hermanson went on to reveal, though, that search behavior may be a better indicator of how people feel and how you can influence them. Thus, keyword research is worth investing in, and harnessing, for the learnings it can provide in all different contexts. With the understanding that keyword research is something worth looking into, Hermanson helped explain some of the basics of it. Rule 1: Don’t start with keywords. Hermanson reminded the marketers in the room to draw from what they know about their industry, competition, brands, and insights already gathered. Use this information to inspire the keyword research rather than pulling keywords…

No sliders using graphic symbol

Reconsidering Sliders

I’m reading this article, “Keeping Your Credibility While Changing Your Mind” article because I have changed my mind about sliders. I feel a little bad since I do believe a small group of people may consider my opinion when it comes to web design, which I am grateful for. Even though I am not a politician, I hope you might consider these five points on why I’m reconsidering the value of sliders on a website home page, especially if you are thinking about switching platforms, or starting a new site. “My thinking has evolved.” My last blog post signing the praises of sliders dates back to the fall season of 2015, three years ago. I don’t need to remind you how fast tech changes on the web. Back then; we finally had these new responsive templates to work with after talking about how important responsive layouts are going to be until we were blue in the face. These new templates had one ginormous image taking up 70% of the layout. In order to not scare retailers into deciding on one…

Computer Video

Video Content Strategy for Smart People (IABC Breakout Session Recap)

You may have heard that video is becoming a pretty big deal in digital marketing. Facebook is prioritizing video posts higher than other types of content when their algorithm determines what to show in the News Feed. And in case you didn’t realize the level of its popularity, YouTube has more than one billion users — or one third of the internet. The last breakout session I attended at the 2018 Business Communicators Summit for the KC chapter of IABC was presented by Jolean Olson of Scenic Road Products. She shared with us why video is so important to marketing (both internal and external) and how to develop the best strategy for your company to use video. First she covered why video is so important. Employees are 75% more likely to watch a video than to read documents, emails or web articles. Video generates 3x as many monthly visitors to a website as other content Visitors spend 88% more time on a website that includes video Organic traffic from search engines increases by 157% with video While it’s great to…

Hallmark Logo

How Words Get You Found (IABC Summit Breakout Session Recap)

In my first recap of the 2018 Business Communicators Summit for the KC chapter of IABC, I covered the keynote address about demystifying content marketing. So let’s look at this recap of a presentation that demystifies search engine optimization, or SEO. And I’ll be honest, I still find the concept mystifying in a lot of ways, but this breakout session helped me get a better idea of what it means and how to use it. In her presentation, “How Words Get You Found,” Kelly Stanze, search strategist (and self-proclaimed SEO nerd) for Hallmark shared the basics of SEO and how both the content side and the technical side need to work together to provide the best SEO bang for your buck. Kelly describes search engine optimization as the process of maximizing the number of visitors to a particular website. She also made sure to point out that SEO has become more than “just marketing.” It’s about content strategy and technical skills for website development/maintenance. The elements of content strategy involve not only what is on the pages of your website,…


Website navigation – did anyone bring a compass?

Test!!!! Being lost on a website is almost as frustrating as being lost in a car. I used to blame the traffic sign companies until Google Maps came around. Now I find myself on the same side with the sign companies as a web designer, trying to show others how to get around in a website. Our grocery store navbars are pretty simple if you don’t have a custom website, and this blog post is not suggesting they will change anytime soon. However, I work on the awginc.com website, and that navigation could use some help when/if it gets redesigned. This article I found, “11 WAYS TO DESIGN THE PERFECT SITE NAVIGATION” by Saijo George on webdesignerdepot.com, has several website navigation examples I like. These examples below are mostly the same as this article, I just replaced the authors descriptions and added my opinions with a grocery perspective. SISTRIX Sistrix, an SEO company based in Germany, uses a nice clean design for their website. They use only 4 drop down menus despite featuring tons of content. When viewing each dropdown…

Web of connecting lines coming together.

Solving the Disconnected Digital Grocery Journey

In theory, omnichannel marketing is fantastic. In practice, it’s much harder, especially for independent retailers who are trying to wrap their hands around all the different ways to reach consumers. Even the large retailers are trying to figure out which platforms to use, how to make them work together, and how to help consumers have the most fluid experience possible. A recent webinar put on by Brick Meets Click featuring Lunds & Byerlys and Unata addressed this disconnected digital grocery journey. Part 1: Grocery Retailing Realities: The Physical – Digital Connection What we know to be true right now is ecommerce is evolving how consumers shop. David Bishop from Brick Meets Click provided the following stats: 38% of grocery consumers have shopped online in last year, up 4.1% Consumer households shop online over 2x per month Share of wallet is now almost 5% Another factor Bishop brought to light is now consumers have many more ways to buy groceries, it isn’t just a competition up and down the street. The business is fragmented with different options and different value propositions…

Person monitoring computer screens with graphs on them.

Website Data & the Power to Know

Many retailers have a website because they know they should. The site is populated with the weekly ad that gives customers the info on the best deals, recipes that make consumers want to try new meals, and pertinent information like hours and address that help make store visits easier. Very often though, retailers don’t take enough time to understand what can be learned from that website. At a recent Social Media Club of Kansas City breakfast, Corey Morris of Voltage KC shared his tips on Google Analytics and how to use them to understand more about who does what on your website. To start, Morris made a great point about data. He explained how while we all know there is tons of data out there, the expectation now is that we’ve harnessed the data that’s assumably there. He also noted that mastering that data is the inherent challenge. One of Morris’s most resonating comments turned out to be “Never bring and opinion to a data fight. Don’t start a discussion with “I think” because with data, we have the power…