THE 2013 WAWARD WINNERS ANNOUNCED

GOLD, SILVER, AND BEST IN SHOW HONOREES UNVEILED

www.w3award.com

New York, NY  - (September 25, 2013) - The Winners of The 2013 W3 Awards have been announced by the International Academy of the Visual Arts today.  Receiving over 4,000 entries, The W3 Awards honors outstanding Websites, Web Marketing, Web Video, & Mobile Apps created by some of the best interactive agencies, designers, and creators worldwide.  Please visit www.w3award.com for a complete list of W3 Award Winners.

TRADEMARK 5150 Inc., awarded 4 W3 Statues for work done on ACEfit.com and HREwheels.com.

  • ACEfit.com - Silver - Website-Health
  • ACEfit.com - Silver - Website-Charitable/Non-Profit
  • HREwheels.com - Silver - Website-Automotive
  • HREwheels.com - Silver - Website Features-User Experience

“We were amazed at the caliber and quality of work we received this year.  Our winners continue to push the envelope of Internet creativity and web design, and it is gratifying to see such great work from the smallest agencies to the biggest firms” said Linda Day, the director of the IAVA.  “On behalf of the over 500 members of The International Academy of the Visual Arts, we are honored to recognize our winners as they continue to set a high standard of excellence for Web development.”

Highlighting the diversity of entries and winners in this year’s competition, the 2013 winners represent an impressive group of agencies and companies of all sizes.

W3 Awards Info:
The W³ Awards honors creative excellence on the Web, and recognizes the creative and marketing professionals behind award winning Websites, Web Video and Online Marketing programs. Simply put, the W³ is the first major Web competition to be accessible to the biggest agencies, the smallest firms, and everyone in between. Small firms are as likely to win as Fortune 500 companies and international agencies.

The W3 Awards is sanctioned and judged by the International Academy of the Visual Arts, an invitation-only body consisting of top-tier professionals from a “Who’s Who” of acclaimed media, advertising, and marketing firms.  Please visit www.iavisarts.org for a full member list and additional information.

For more information about the W³ Awards, please visit www.w3award.com, email The W³ Awards at info@w3award.com or call 212-675-3555.  

Easy-to-use online store turns browsers into buyers

A fully functional and profit-driven product website is supported by an easy-to-use online store and shopping cart. But the form and function of an online store varies based on the size of your company and the type of products you offer. By comparing in-store and online shopping for a multi-category business such as Target, we can analyze which aspects of e-commerce would benefit your brand and website.

So let’s say I’m shopping for a new camera. Under the “electronics” tab on the landing page, I click on “cameras & camcorders” and see multiple camera types. I’ll select the Point & Shoot; it’s small, practical, and easy to manage. Then I’ll narrow options to brand type (I’m partial to Canon). From there I can organize my viewing options based on these options: price, average ratings, best seller, or newest.

Price is an obvious sorting method. When I was buying a laptop for college a couple years back, the store employees continually reminded me, “You get what you pay for.” True in certain situations, but a product in great demand can also warrant a higher sticker price, not necessarily a guarantee of improved functionality, value, or ease of use. The point is that price doesn’t guarantee anything; it only differentiates camera features that you may or may not find useful.

So how do I know which features are most important? If I reorganize by best seller, I can take into account other users’ opinions. Each camera lists reviews, a product demo describing its unique features, and a side panel listing, “guests who viewed this item ultimately bought….” I can also select three cameras to view a side-by-side comparison of features.

All this information, and I’m still unsure which model I want. Target.com has a phone number and email address to contact customer service, but that can defeat the purpose of convenient online shopping. This is where in-store shopping has the advantage. The reliability and expertise of an in-store employee isn’t guaranteed. Yet when we’re faced with as many options as a big-name store like Target offers, having an employee sort out our brand and model preferences can be a relief.

In-store shopping has its drawbacks, too. First off, there’s the difficulty of navigating your way to the camera aisle (conveniently at the back of the store) without getting distracted by the clothing, music, and electronics that would make ideal holiday gifts. Then after explaining what you’re looking for, an employee may try to upsell or confuse you with features you don’t care much about but are persuaded to think you should. I went in searching for the same reasonably-priced Canon point-and-shoot I’d considered online. The employee narrowed down my options, but then he threw me for a loop when he suggested yet another model I hadn’t even considered. I left with no camera in hand, more confused than when I’d arrived. 

In regards to in-store and online shopping comparisons, there is no perfect setup. Online shopping is an essential element to turning a profit for your online business, but how you set it up depends on your brand image and offered goods. While Target’s product offerings can be a bit overwhelming, your online business can create a clean, manageable presentation from a smaller store selection.

In sum, a helpful online store should provide category views with narrowing options, customer reviews, photos accompanied by detailed feature descriptions, product comparisons, and obvious promotional deals to incentivize shoppers to buy. Making the buying experience informative, simple, and easy to use will turn browsers into buyers.

Site optimization for mobile devices beneficial during holiday shopping season

This year’s Cyber Monday, traditionally the online counter to in-store Black Friday sales, became the heaviest online spending day in history. Yet in spite of increased online spending rates through Thanksgiving weekend, this year’s pertinent question for retailers is not necessarily when consumers shop, but how they shop. In regards to modes of online shopping, mobile devices are this year’s game-changers for the online retail world.

 “We are finding that, if you build a mobile site, the mobile dollars are coming much faster,” said Chris Mason, CEO of Branding Brand, a mobile commerce site that offers data related to mobile devices.

Considering mobile usage has increased by 96 percent since 2011 for the holiday shopping season, tablets and smartphones are affecting the way consumers shop. In contrast to retail stores’ limited locations and hours of retail stores, mobile devices enable shoppers to shop anytime and anywhere—at home, at work, and under the dinner table during family gatherings.

The accessibility and convenience mobile shopping has boosted sales for mobile and app-friendly sites such as Amazon and Ebay. Amazon was the most-visited online retailer on Black Friday, its sales having increased 42 percent from 2011. In terms of mobile sales volume, Ebay’s total U.S. mobile sales rose 153 percent by Black Friday and more than doubled on Cyber Monday.

While mobile devices serve as ideal browse and purchase engines for web-based companies such as Amazon and Ebay, they also make for great in-store shopping companions. Shoppers browsing store aisles can turn to their smartphones or tablets to compare product features and prices from other retailers. This assures shoppers they’re getting the best deals before heading for the checkout line.

 “Mobile commerce as a whole has clearly gone beyond what it’s traditionally been, which is something primarily for the research phase,” said Clark Fredricksen, vice president at researcher EMarketer Inc., in an interview. “Tablets are the key driver in terms of the sales element. They’ve extended the length of the shopping day.”

Mobile commerce has not only extended a day’s shopping hours, but also the number of holiday shopping days showing significant sales growth. EBay, for example, saw a 133-percent growth in mobile volume on Thanksgiving Day and its highest number of mobile users on Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend.

So that in-store and online retailers to take advantage of mobile traffic, promotional periods will therefore have to last through the holiday season, and not just on select days around Thanksgiving. In fact, Google has predicted that mobile devices will account for 44 percent of last-minute gift searches.

All in all, the time and mode of completing purchases is changing—from in-store perusing on specified shopping holidays to mobile shopping anytime and anywhere. So long as consumers are buying online, businesses would benefit from optimizing their sites for mobile devices during the holiday season.

Next week we’ll discuss distinguishable shopping cart features that give certain major retailers the advantage for online purchasing. 

Creative email for our 10th Anniversary Open House. We don’t feel a day over 5 years old and we look even better.

Creative email for our 10th Anniversary Open House. We don’t feel a day over 5 years old and we look even better.

The BEST co-ed softball team this side of the Rockies. Damn straight!!!

The BEST co-ed softball team this side of the Rockies. Damn straight!!!