South Whidbey's Web site has new look

The South Whidbey Record has a new face online.

Anyone who has logged onto recently will have noticed more than a few changes.

As part of an online redesign throughout Sound Publishing, the company overhauled all its Web sites — including The Record’s — to bring readers improved access and enhanced services.

Readers will find even more local news online, including breaking news, Web extras and features. New content is being added to the Web site daily, and fresh stories have been appearing on since the site’s unofficial launch on May 1.

In addition to a new site layout, there are numerous enhancements to the online Record.

The Record has bumped up its video coverage of news and features, such as this week’s video of graduation ceremonies at South Whidbey High School. New videos will be added to the Web site every week.

As well as providing news and photos about the community, readers can see the “most read” stories on Whidbey Island and from across Western Washington.

A completely new part of The Record Web site offers online entertainment. Readers have access to a long list of comics — including favorites such as “Garfield” and “Ziggy” — as well as national columnists such as “Dear Abby.” There are plenty of puzzles, games, as well as a daily horoscopes, an up-to-the-minute lottery feature and the weather.

Starting next week, online photo galleries will be added to The Record online, and a new feature will allow people to order photo reprints online — including many previously unpublished images.

For up-to-date information from across the region, visitors to can click over to to see news from the Record’s sister publications across Puget Sound. The companion Web site gathers news from Sound Publishing’s

30 papers in Western Washington.

No other news service has this area so well-covered, company officials said.

The update is only the beginning.

Watch in coming weeks and months as www.southwhidbey and will continue to evolve, with features that will include blogs, reader comments, an extensive community events calendar and more.

The new Web site also provides innovative opportunities for local advertisers.

As part of The Record’s commitment to the community, the newspaper has designated a fixed number of ad spots in the online paper for local advertisers only. Those ads from local businesses will be served on the site using the most advanced technology on the Web today.

Record publisher Sherry Mays said she has seen tremendous traffic growth on its Web site.

“The traffic on our site has almost doubled since we launched the new site a month ago, which is just phenomenal,” she said.

“It tells me that there are many more readers looking to get more informed and connect more with what’s happening in their community,” she said.

The Web site is the continuation of The Record’s commitment to serve as Whidbey Island’s central source of news.

“The South Whidbey Record has been the community news source for almost 90 years, and every year we look for a better way to serve our readers and advertisers. The amount of resources being invested in shows our commitment to bringing our readers news everyday, when the news is happening,” she said.

The Record is the community’s main source of local news and the Web strengthens that position.

“It’s been fun to watch the changing environment in the newsroom, and with the combination of the Web and print products we are the daily news and information source for our community,” she added.

Manfred Tempelmayr, president of Sound Publishing, agreed.

“We want our newspapers to continue to be the leading provider of local and state-wide news in the Pacific Northwest by expanding and leveraging our considerable news-gathering capabilities,” Tempelmayr said.

“We have identified and developed strategic partnerships and relationships with the world’s leading technology companies to enhance our content and services on the Web, integrating these into The Record’s site.”

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