5 Company Outing Ideas

It’s winter and it’s cold in the midwest.  Here at Znode we’re thinking about warm weather, which means more company outings and time in the sun (when we finally get it)!  If your office needs some ideas for adventures outside the office (instead of the typical happy hour), look no further.

1. Baseball game.  It’s almost baseball season!  Take a look at your team’s schedule and pick an afternoon game.  Get tailgate ready with grilling supplies and spend a few hours at the ballpark because not everyone’s sport of choice is baseball…

2. Tough Mudder.  Spruce up that standard 5K!  I know, it seems crazy, but it’s fun with a team.  Those adventurous coworkers of yours should consider this competition.  You’ll also have to build up to this event, so it works as a long-term team exercise.  Plus, a fit office is a happy office, right?

3. Bowling.  We feel the winter blues in Milwaukee until May.  If your team needs an indoor outing, what better way to warm up than bowling?  You can make it a friendly competition with team if you have a big group.  This is also a great outing after hours if you don’t want to abandon the office for the afternoon.

4. Brewery tour.  In Milwaukee, we’ve got breweries everywhere.  Even if your city doesn’t have as many, scope out the best one (or maybe your team is into wine?).  It’s a fun spin on the traditional happy hour.  Take an afternoon and book a tour even if you have to make a special trip.  Of course, this outing is only appropriate for employees 21+.

5. Mini golf.  We actually have a miniature putting green at Znode, so golf is always on our minds!  Of course, nothing beats the joy of miniature golfing in summer air.  This is one of our favorite activities because it’s simple fun for everyone.  Maybe even rent some clubs and hit the driving range afterwards!

Here’s a bonus: office potluck.  It’s not a company outing, but it’s still a fun way to get to know your fellow co-workers.  Znode recently did a potluck before Thanksgiving and we had everything from chicken curry to chili to beer dip.  You’ll learn a little something about everyone.  Get to know your coworkers through the stomach!  Pick a Friday and have everyone bring in something for lunch.

In any case, get out of the office here and there.  At Znode, we value each other’s company because we feel more like a family when we have  some fun.

The Latest Trends in eCommerce User Experience

It’s finally 2016 and a great time to evaluate your eCommerce user experience. Holiday shopping is over, so you probably have oodles of analytics and data.  Now is the time to make some tweaks to your eCommerce site.  It seems like there are new trends every day. We’re here to break them down (note: this a list, not a ranking of importance).

Responsive design.

It’s the hottest buzzword in the techsphere because everyone is using a mobile device.  Shopping on a mobile device is more popular than ever.  Internet Retailer recently cited a report from Forrester that $1 trillion in purchases were influenced by a mobile device in 2015!  So that means a shift towards mobile shopping, making responsive web design (RWD) especially important.  Mobile shoppers quickly get discouraged if the process of completing a transaction is hindered by a messy, non-responsive eCommerce store.


Tailor your website and mobile website for your customers.  This might be a “Hello,” message, product recommendations, or anything that adds a personal element to the online shopping experience. You’ve made an effort to differentiate your customers and this makes the user experience unique.  As Practical Ecommerce notes, online shoppers want to feel like people, especially when it comes to things like product recommendations or “frequently bought with” prompts.


Your eCommerce store needs to have every form of contact information and all of it should be easily accessible. A phone number, email, and even social media should be clearly visible because customers always have questions.  If I can’t quickly find a phone number during my shopping experience, I probably won’t complete my purchase.

Now, don’t go and completely change your site from top to bottom!  That will just confuse your customers and search engines.  Rather, look at pain points on your site and use these tips as a guide to plan your strategy.