Matrix Group, a digital agency in the Washington DC area specializing in web design, mobile and e-marketing services, development, AMS, integration, and branding recently launched a new website for the Food Marketing Institute (FMI).
FMI is a trade association that proudly advocates on behalf of the food retail industry. FMI offers resources and provides valuable benefits to more than 1,225 food retail and wholesale member companies in the United States and around the world. FMI membership covers the spectrum of diverse venues where food is sold, including single owner grocery stores, large multi-store supermarket chains and mixed retail stores. The FMI website is an important means by which the association communicates with members, raises awareness, and provides value to members through myriad resources including events and research.
The FMI website was last redesigned in 2012. Since then, the organization has rebranded, expanded membership, and revamped its key products and services. As a result, FMI decided to redesign its website. To do this, FMI turned to longtime web and digital partner, Matrix Group.
The Matrix Group Solution
As we do with most projects, we started with WHY? Why redesign? To what end? To accomplish what? To answer these questions, we conducted a deep dive into their analytics and interviewed members. Here’s what we learned:
- Interviewees reported visiting the website monthly
- Users subject matter area influences their interests
- FMI.org was not yet viewed universally as an industry resource
- Resources are too buried (often resort to search)
- Visitors want curated content – tell me what is most important right now
- FMI Signature Research driving pageviews
- The Voice of Food Retail blog is a valued resource – go-to section of site
The new FMI web strategy revolves around two things: Content Curation and a Great Search. Here’s what we did:
- Created a streamlined information architecture for the website. The home page was decluttered; old and outdated information was purged, including dates items in the FMI store.
- Created a design that showcases images of FMI members and who they serve, namely the men, women and families who shop at grocery stores.
- Updated the existing Sitefinity content management system to the latest version and updated the templates and widgets to represent today’s best practices.
- Updated the SSO (single sign-on) protocol with FMI’s membership database, MatrixMaxx from Matrix Group. We upgraded the code to work better with FMI’s Reference Library partner, Inmagic.
- Upgraded the site search to SearchBlox so that visitors can filter results, FMI can manage featured results, and the results are more meaningful for visitors.
- Worked with FMI on their content strategy. Some highlights: there will only ever be seven (yes, seven!) items on the home page to respond to members’ requests for a more curated content strategy; we eliminated main menu landing pages to facilitate getting to content fast; pages were enhanced with better title tags and descriptions to facilitate better searching.
- The website redesign launch was also timed to coincide with FMI getting an enhanced MatrixMaxx store, which features a better shopping experience and better styling.
“Working with the FMI team on this project was an amazing process. The association was open to new ideas, ready to dive into other analytics and make better decisions, and blessed with staff who have a sophisticated design aesthetic,” said Joanna Pineda, CEO of Matrix Group, who assisted with the website strategy and member interviews.
“Matrix Group helped strategically guide us through the process of redesigning FMI.org so it was a collaborative process grounded in our research findings,” said Vice President, Communications & Consumer/Community Affairs, David Fikes. “With enhanced design, greater flexibility and functionality they have helped create a strong communications tool for FMI to better communicate with our members and industry.”
Visit the transformed FMI website at www.FMI.org.
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