- the new tourism body marketing England within Britain, and Britain to the rest of the world - has awarded the contract to develop its international visitbritain.com websites, worth an estimated £500,000, to global technology solutions group, NetDecisions.
All of VisitBritain’s 33 websites around the world, as well as travelbritain.org in the US and eight special campaign websites, such as Britain’s Gardens, Movie Maps and Hidden Britain, will be redeveloped to make them even more appealing, inspiring and informative for consumers. The contract also includes developing VisitBritain’s internet ambitions in four new markets: China, Korea, Poland and Russia.
Of 320 applications expressing interest in the work, 12 were invited to tender before VisitBritain short-listed a final four.
Peter Varlow, VisitBritain’s new Customer Services Director, said: “The new visitbritain.com will offer more inspiration about Britain and a more personalised and user-friendly experience on the sites. There will also be a new holiday planning tool, and much more emphasis on exploiting CRM. NetDecisions were able to offer us a strong and competitive technical solution to our needs.
“Their commitment and enthusiasm for the project, combined with their proven experience in the tourism sector and their demonstrably strong project management skills, will help VisitBritain to increase the internet’s already vital role in our marketing strategy.
“Euro RSCG Circle, who have been our main technology partner since 1997, will continue to play a vital role in our work, including the launch of a new England site, VisitEngland.com, to support our domestic marketing campaign. Circle are also working on VisitBritain’s European short breaks campaign which launches this Autumn. Circle have been a highly responsive and creative agency and we greatly value their ongoing support for us.”
The evolution of VisitBritain’s consumer websites will continue to reflect Britain’s core values - history and heritage, countryside and coast, cities and culture, sport and activities - and present a number of improvements for the consumer:
? Content will be more inspirational to encourage new as well as repeat visitors
? Opportunities for broadband and other digital technology will be exploited
? Mapping will be improved to help customers plan their trips, and information about events, accommodation and attractions will be expanded and improved
? The value and viability of text-chat, online notice-boards, chat-rooms and ‘personal recommendation systems’ will be explored to better advise the traveller
? The sites will offer itinerary planning capabilities and more ‘printer-friendly’ pages including the introduction of an ‘assemble your own brochure’ facility
? Working with EnglandNet, VisitScotland.com and VisitWales.com, the sites will drive visitors to third-party websites to complete their booking
Manoj Badale, co-founder of NetDecisions, said:
“We are absolutely delighted to have won such a lengthy and vigorous tender process and are pleased that both our technical prowess and appreciation of VisitBritain’s design needs were recognised, together with our ability to support their global business.”
To read visitBritain.com review click here