Canadian Magazine Industry News
9 February 2011,     TORONTO/MONTRÉAL
Reader’s Digest redesigns websites, launches series of apps
Reader’s Digest and its French counterpart, Sélection du Reader’s Digest have launched redesigned websites with new sections, improved user interfaces and greater opportunities for advertisers.

 


Designed on the Drupal platform, the visual side of the redesigns were completed in-house, with the technical aspects created in partnership with Montréal-based TP1, says Reader’s Digest vice president, digital media and strategic partnerships Yann Paquet. Changes on the sites include new Jokes and Fun sections, and expanded areas for Food and Recipes and Health and Well Being.

 

Advertisers will benefit from increased recipe search functionality in the new design, says Paquet. “There is a greater focus on sub-categories in the recipe searches,” he says. “This is interesting for clients who are looking to target specific markets.”

Paquet says Rd.ca has seen month-over-month growth from November 2010 to January 2011, with internal reports of one million unique visitors on the site for the first month of this year — numbers he hopes to see grow with the new, less cluttered design. “[The new site] has a totally new brand identity,” he says. “It is more engaging and interactive for the community.”

In addition to redesigning the web sites for Rd.ca and Selection.readersdigest.ca, Reader’s Digest has launched a series of 12 monthly iPhone applications, developed with New York-based Moving Interactive. The first release is based on the print magazine’s popular Joke section and will be free, with pricing plans to develop for future releases as the brand tests the water for user traffic. “Jokes have been a big part of the magazine for years, now we’re including it on the website and on an application,” says Paquet. “We are creating a multiplatform experience so we are able to keep people connected with the brand wherever they are.”

Paquet hopes the Reader's Digest apps will see success similar to the company's Dinner Spinner iPhone application for Allrecipes.com. Since launching in 2008, the Dinner Spinner app has been downloaded over one million times in the iTunes store and recently launched a French version. The basic version of the Dinner Spinner app is available for free and the Pro version is $2.99.

Reader's Digest and Sélection du Reader's Digest are published monthly by Reader's Digest Canada.





— Val Maloney
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