A new Visit York website – visityork.org – has launched this week with improved design and functionality to showcase the city’s activities, events and wide range of tourism businesses to over 115,000 online visitors to the platform each month
A global hub for displaying York’s tourism offer, the new website was developed by the team at Make It York together with the web development supplier DestinationCore and supported by the Visit England grant funding.
Pre-pandemic, 8.4 million annual visitors to York brought £765 million into the city’s economy, through spend on hotels, eating out and shopping and the city’s tourism website is a key driver for visits to the city. During 2020, through such initiatives as the ‘York at Home’ hub, the Virtual York Christmas Market and the special #LoveYork Awards, Visit York continued to ‘bring’ visitors to York and promote all the great businesses in the city.
The new-look visityork.org will help put York and the city’s businesses on travellers’ staycation bucket lists this year, by giving business and leisure visitors a visually impactful and intuitive experience from any device anywhere in the world.
On top of the improved visual aspects, the new website will offer better functionality and a more personalised experience for users, along with a brand new and improved itinerary building capability that will allow visitors to share their created itineraries online. Visit York’s popular hub pages will get an uplift too, with more dynamic and interactive content to be displayed, starting with the launch of the #LoveYork summer staycations campaign hub.
With over 60% of users accessing the visityork.org website on mobile devices, the new design brings a dynamic and user-friendly interface of the site’s mobile version, contributing to higher engagement and improved user journey.
Ashley Young, Senior Marketing and Communications Manager at Make It York, said: “Our new website is designed to enhance the experience for both visitors to the city and the local businesses that use our platform to showcase themselves. The itinerary planning tool and improved booking system have all been designed to create a ‘customer first’, fully responsive experience – from the discovery and planning stages, right through to pre-arrival and check-in.
“We are continually looking for ways to keep the city ahead of its competitors and to provide a first-class digital experience, on top of a world-class real-life experience, for every visitor.”
The new website has been developed by the digital destination marketing solutions company –DestinationCore, who have decades of experience in helping cities, towns and DMOs to successfully position and brand places.
Will Wright, Managing Partner at DestinationCore, commented: “We are delighted to be working with the team at Make It York to help them develop a website solution which helps bridge the gap between ‘digital visitor’ and ‘physical visitor’. We believe that our User Experience and technical expertise in destination marketing and Make It York’s knowledge and expertise of their visitors and members is provides a winning combination to help create a website which will help grow tourism in York and demonstrate outstanding value for the city”.
The new website will also offer a better integration with VisitBritain’s TXGB booking service, allowing businesses to link their products directly to this national booking platform. The accommodation booking services are also being integrated to the new website.
Visit York has seen a steady rise in online and social media engagement over the last years, as visitors’ and residents’ interest in the city and its world-class offer has continued to grow. In the last two years alone, visityork.org has seen 2.2 million people using the website to plan their trip to York, while the @visityork social media accounts have grown to a total number of 142,000 ‘York fans’ in 2021.