Starting over in the community
Journey along the foggy coastlines and rolling farmland of Devon, and you may just feel as though you’ve been swept into another era. But as nostalgic as the experience of visiting can be, Visit Devon needed their technology to catch up with the times.
In 2016, Devon was met with a critical new challenge: they needed to generate income from membership in their new function as a Community Interest Company, as they’d no longer be receiving funds from their local council. To achieve this, the new Visit Devon website had to be attractive and desirable for businesses to advertise on, but it also needed a platform that made it easy to commercialize. Their strategy was to grow their revenue by offering various membership packages, enabled by streamlined data management and in-depth reporting.
As Simon Fishwick of the Visit Devon team shared, “Revenue generation was key to our decision-making process as all income would need to be generated by the company from the outset.”
Working in partnership with Simpleview and the Ignyte sales and marketing team allowed Visit Devon to fulfill the mission they set out to accomplish. Revenue generation has increased year-over-year and the website has proven to be popular with our membership as it’s constantly evolving as new features are added.
Fortunately, Simpleview’s e-tourism solutions fit the bill perfectly. Simpleview’s team helped Visit Devon to create the perfect website solution to maximise their commercial opportunities, while their partnership with Ignyte gave them the experience and expertise to take advantage of those opportunities.
A Fresh New Face
The new Visit Devon website went live in November 2016 with a range of opportunities including website membership packages, banner advertising, featured positions and gallery images, all underpinned by the Simpleview platform. Furthermore, by working with their Simpleview account manager, Visit Devon was able to maximise the commercial offerings available on the website, as well as gradually introduce new items as upsell opportunities.
From 2017 to 2019, Visit Devon succeeded in both doubling its revenue and boosting its traffic by 50 percent. The move to the Simpleview platform boosted their website traffic by more than 50 percent as well, ensuring that Visit Devon’s members are promoted to hundreds of thousands more visitors.
With this best-in-class technology and web presence, Visit Devon has been able to both gain new business and also retain existing business, because they can demonstrate a solid return on investment and provide great service to their advertisers. In fact, the Ignyte team makes a courtesy call every 6 to 8 weeks to all members to discuss their website performance and how they may grow their figures over the remainder of their membership. This is only possible with the detailed business statistics available in the Simpleview platform, which offer a full breakdown of the performance of each website record, allowing the team to compare and contrast business performance against competitors.
A Better Path Forward
After three years, Visit Devon is now an established DMO that is not just financially sustainable, but also very successful. Revenue has more than doubled, from £104,570 in 2017 to £238,942 in 2019. As such, Visit Devon has been able to re-invest greater amounts in promotion and marketing, ensuring that Devon retains its position as one of England’s most popular visitor destinations.
In the words of Simon Fishwick of the Visit Devon team: “Simpleview and Ignyte have managed to deliver exactly what we, as an organisation, required.”