ABTECH has launched a website usability project in conjunction with web design company Jamber.
ABTECH Chairman Graham Barnes said the project would highlight the importance of good findable content, clear online propositions and ergonomic ‘fit for purpose’ style and design.
“Search Engine Optimisation is getting all the press right now”, said Barnes, “but we feel that the balance is wrong. It isn’t an either/or decision but much of the management time spent on arcane SEO techniques could be more usefully spent on ensuring sites are doing their owners justice.”
Jamber’s previous usability experience, both outside the travel sector and with companies such as Thomas Cook, has shown that simple changes can sometimes bring dramatic improvements in conversion rates.
Jamber’s MD Jerry Foot said that the company was pleased to be working with ABTECH on the project. “ABTECH’s work on abta.com has been aimed at helping ABTA member companies extend their online marketing reach” said Foot, “so the Usability project is a natural development. We want to make sure that as many as possible of the 1 million plus visitors abta.com delivers to ABTA member websites each year go on to make bookings.”
ABTECH hopes to publish best practice conclusions at the end of the project.
27 ABTA member tour operators have already applied to take part.
ABTECH and Jamber had originally offered 10 free usability audits to get the project off to a flying start, and are now exploring sponsorship options aimed at extending the scope and depth of the project.