27 November 2012
With today’s busy life-styles and the expecta-tion of immediacy, City Council has invested ina middleman to allow for live bookings from its new website. In the past, even online bookings took some time as the interested party would have to email and ask about accommodation or services and wait to hear back.
Live bookings allow a customer to make the bookings when they “feel excited” about the prospect, said Mayor Wincen Cuy. "It’ll quite obviously give a greater amount of exposure and give us the opportunity to be able to get our product a broader potential customer base,” he said.
“It’s a trend nowadays for people to actually sit down in front of their television and go to their iPhone or the iPad and look up something and if they so feel inclined, book it then and there.”
To establish the engine that allows live bookings to take place, Council contracted Adelaide company V3 Leisure and Marketing’s Karen Head, who visited the city to encourage local operators to join the initiative.
It meant that if a person visited the official Broken Hill website they would be easily linked to a range of services without having to source these from different websites.
Ms Head said that live bookings were an expected part of modern tourism. She said that there had been no trouble convincing operators to jump on board during her three day Council-funded trip. “We’ve definitely had success there; around 75 per cent are on board,” she said.“Basically each year we see the number of people booking from devices like iPads and phones almost doubling. “This should open up more doors to the platform being used to generate live bookings on a variety of websites.”
Ms Head said that she had worked with areas such as country Queensland and the Clare Valley in SA to complete a similar aim. She said it could help Council better track trends in tourism, such as where tourists are coming from and the popularity of the site.
Mayor Cuy said that the project fitted in with its ‘Discover a Lost World’ campaign which aimed to give the city an image makeover. “It takes us to the next level of being able to entice the consumer to book in Broken Hill,” he said. “I think it’s important that we have the ability so the consumer can book immediately when they’re excited.” The new website will be officially launched on December 18 when the old site will be switched off.
However, it is available now at www.brokenhillaustralia.com.au/
Read the full news article here - Broken Hill Tourism enters the instant age.