Tourism has witnessed impressive growth in the past decade and barring a few exceptional periods such as the Covid-19 phase. It can be said that Tourism can grow in the future. During good times, the tourism sector has been proved to be a sector with rapid growth opportunities. Moreover, with the increase in tourism activities like trip planning, visiting tourist sites, and the like, the economic situation of the country improves as well. Therefore, governments often try to improve tourism-related infrastructure to get attracted to the destination. One in eleven jobs in the world goes to the tourism sector. Thus, it has become necessary to increase the focus on tourism development to attract more visitors.
Various factors impact the development and growth of the tourism sector. Some of these factors are the tourist location environment, presence of transport facility, availability of hotels and resorts, online hotel reservations, geographical location, guest experience of international tourists, and proximity to the other tourist spots in the area. Furthermore, the attitude of travelers and how they perceive a tourist destination also determine the tourist destination’s success and growth. Thus, these factors must be managed efficiently for growth in tourism within the country.
Tourism is an integrated business that is closely connected to the hotel industry, the hospitality industry and the transport industry which serve as the base, followed by any other supporting industries that make business possible within these entities. The dependency of tourism on various industries of small and big nature requires an integration of all such industries. A strong integrated information management system with vital information on destinations, products, services, transport facilities, etc., is very important. Also, an information portal that can accurately link all these industries can prove highly beneficial both for the tourist as well as tourism business organizations making a great impact on the application of ICT in the tourism industry.
Travel websites are important sources of information that serve as a niche in helping the tourist to make decisions on destinations. In current times, websites serve as a storehouse of information on tourism products and services. A well-designed and comprehensive travel website is a core need for marketing, exploring and gathering information for tourist and tourism agencies. Therefore, travel websites must be developed based on user requirements and have a user-centric approach.
Websites have evolved into excellent facility that helps tourists get a range of information related to various aspects such as exploration opportunities, entertainment options, learning benefits, and available communication channels. The site can be serving various usages such as trip fare information, travel reviews, or both.
There are essential strategies used in website development that facilitate the effectiveness and efficiency of the tourist’s services.
1. The first strategy is value extraction, which facilitates self-check-in by visiting tourists in airports and hotels.
2. The second strategy is the capture strategy. It’s a strategy that helps the client to get the required information from their clients hence improving their marketing goals through feedback and rating strategy.
3. The third strategy is based on providing a value-addition strategy, which combines services and products to create more valuable and diverse products for tourists.
4. The last strategy is the value creation strategy, which involves allowing tourists to participate in decision-making on the definition of the services and planning the tourism product packaging.
After the customer has selected the particular location, destination basic details like where that destination is located, what it is known for, what one can explore there, the historic significance of that place, cost of that particular tour, etc. all these factors indirectly influence customers to visit and explore that place. Interactive HD images play a very vital role in influencing customers as images speak louder than words. Travel operators can also upload videos of previous tours on the website, which helps to form a good impression on the customer at first sight. The destination image is key to tourists’ decision-making process. Destination image affects the number of visitors visiting the destination. Suppose a destination possesses a positive image in the eyes of the visitors. In that case, they will also promote the destination to their friends and family members, thus increasing the visitor count to the destination. The positive image of the destination does not only attract first-time visitors but also induces repeat visitors to revisit the destination.
Tourism websites are among the most influencing forces that can build a strong and
positive destination image to induce travelers to travel to the destination. The official tourism websites should increase the destination’s visibility so that every potential visitor can see the destination along with attractive affirmative information. It will modify their behavior, and there’s a high chance that they will include the destination in their list to visit.
The website can be used as a perfect platform to reach your customers with important information. If during a certain period, the travel agency is not taking any tour, then through their website they can convey these details to the customers to keep them always informed.
Every traveler is afraid to spend a huge amount for the first time at any travel agency or travel company. At this time, customer reviews or testimonials play an important role. Travel websites can have travelers’ testimonials on them. Old travelers can share their travelling experiences and mark their reviews on the website which helps future customers form a perfect decision. Thus, customer testimonials spread positive word of mouth about the travel company.
If you have a big website, (A website with many web pages) then it becomes complicated for the customer to search for what they are looking for. So, with the presence of a search option, they can just type the destination they want to explore in the search box and the result will pop up immediately. This provides a good user experience for the customers and increases their chances of coming back to the website.
A virtual tour is a functionality that involves simulation of the original location by creating videos or HD images on the website so that the user can explore the destination as if he is experiencing it in real. This feature helps customers indulge in that location without actually being present there.
A satisfied tourist is a retained tourist. It implies that the tourist who is content with
the destination and has an excellent visiting experience will commit to revisiting the destination. The Internet is a fast-growing channel and having a travel website ensures the fulfillment of the demands of a tourist and has played a substantial role in the growth and formation of e-tourism.