Irish website named among world's Top 25 tourism sites
Limerick.ie a leading website
Forget the Wild Atlantic Way or Ireland's Ancient East. Limerick.ie has just been tagged among the Top 25 tourism board websites on earth.
The Limerick City & County Council website is one of just four European sites featured on a 2017 list published by US-based travel media site, Skift.
The influential Top 25 sees Limerick.ie rank alongside global tourism websites like Destination Canada, NewZealand.com and Cape Town Tourism (capetown.travel), as well as well-known US hubs like Visit Florida and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (visitlasvegas.com).
Vienna (wien.info), Geneva Tourism (geneve.com) and Visit the Faroe Islands (visitfaroeislands.com) are the three other European tourism sites listed for 2017.
“We like how Limerick, Ireland draws attention to the different reasons why people travel to Limerick whether it’s for school, leisure or business," Skift says.
"It also gives you a sense of what it’s like to live in the city and has helpful resources for locals to understand why they should be involved in the city’s tourism industry.”
Skift (skift.com) bills itself as a "travel industry intelligence platform" providing media, insights and marketing to travel pros and professional travellers.
As well as daily news and insider takes, it publishes influential research reports for an audience of over a million monthly visitors.
“We are delighted that Limerick.ie is in such great company with some of the world’s top tourism websites, some of which we benchmarked ourselves against when designing the new site,” says Laura Ryan, Limerick City and County Council’s Head of Marketing and Communications.
Limerick.ie underwent a major re-launch last April, and now hosts thousands of pages "in what is the biggest single online portal for any council in Ireland," the council says.
The newly revamped site allows users to create a 'My Limerick' profile, is fully mobile-ready and integrates user generated content, allowing locals to promote their own areas "and provide a real and authentic experience for the visitor," Ryan adds.
The best tourism board sites in the business are increasingly using Instagram, video and user-generated content, Skift points out.
They also feature events (such as Limerick.ie's What's On guide) and are working to mine site data and analytics to target travellers with relevant content.
The company's Top 25 is an annual list that deliberately excludes sites highlighted the previous year (with the exception of Destination Canada).
Tourism Ireland's Ireland.com was included in both 2013 and 2016.
Although tourism board websites are relevant for certain types of traveller, Skift also notes that they are far from the only information sources online.
"Probably more" travellers rely on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, TripAdvisor, Google and personal recommendations from family and friends as their top sources of travel inspiration, it points out.
“Our key aim this year is to internationalise Limerick and build on the momentum around the real change and innovation that’s happening here at the moment," says Limerick City and County Council Director of Economic Development, Dr Pat Daly.
"The digital experience that is Limerick.ie reflects our competitive, modern, vibrant and exciting location for living, doing business and visiting.”
See the full list of Skift's Top 25 tourism board websites here.