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Monday, 07 October 2013 08:19

What Does a Successful Website Look Like? (PART 2)

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The tourism industry is a visual one, wouldn't you agree? When it comes to attracting tour operators and travelers to your attraction, hotel, destination, etc., having a beautiful, easy to read, easy to navigate website is what can set you apart from the competition. But what does a successful website look like? We reached out to Mo Sherifdeen, director of integrated marketing at Travel Oregon—winner of two Mercury awards for the Best Overall State Marketing Program and Best State Travel Website in the country—and got his answers to how their website became the best. Click here to see PART 1 of Mo's Q&A session. 


Have you gotten feedback from tour operators on your website? If so, is it good? What do they like most about it?

While the site isn’t necessarily geared towards tour operators, anecdotal feedback from our partners suggests that they appreciate the educational aspect of the site. They love the “deep dives” into Oregon’s places, the stories about the people who live and play here, and most importantly the advice from locals. 

In fact, we used the feedback from tour operators to create localized versions of the site for the travel trade professionals in the China (TravelOregon.Cn) and France (TravelOregon.Fr) markets.

Why is it important to have an easily accessible website?

The term “accessibility” is a complex yet critical term when it comes to creating an online presence. From a content standpoint, it means having a distinct point of view about your destination and/or business and consistently telling that story in an authentic way. From a platform standpoint, it also means that the place you’re telling your story is “findable” for folks who’re looking for it. Finally, once they find you, you need to ensure that your content is readable on any tablet or mobile device and that folks with disabilities can perceive and interact with your content.  When you consider that travelers take between thirty to forty-six days to book travel and look at between forty and 114 websites before making a trip decision, your margin for error is extremely low.

What should other travel suppliers do in order to set themselves apart like Travel Oregon has done?

I think it ultimately comes to a balancing act between what your audience wants and what you have to offer. The art of relationship building through digital channels is the balancing act of keeping your audience ‘entertained’ and ‘engaged’ versus asking them to take specific action. Part of that is providing consistent content that is enjoyable and keeps your brand top of mind. Only once you’ve built that trust over time, you can expect conversions (and sales!).

Do you have a travel website that gets lots of traffic and positive feedback from tour operators or groups in general? Share them with us and you may be featured in an article here on Group Travel Supplier! E-mail your stories to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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