Fáilte Ireland will invest €1 million to improve the websites and digital skillsets of visitor attractions and activity providers in Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands region, it has been announced made by Minister of State for the Office of Public Works and Flood Relief, Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran, with applications now being accepted by the national tourism authority until Wednesday, July 24.
Fáilte Ireland’s new Website Improvement Programme will focus on developing a full web improvement plan for the successful businesses which will help them deliver an unparalleled user experience, attract more visitors to the Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands region, and increase awareness of their business and the region.
This new programme will be piloted with at least 40 participating businesses to make their websites more appealing to visitors, helping them to win more customers and to drive more tourist activity to the area.
As part of the programme Fáilte Ireland will also provide a range of free supports and training to the participating businesses as well as a high level of funding to implement the changes that are required to their website.
Selected websites will also be fully reviewed and rated before a full web improvement plan is developed and rolled out. The review will address key areas affecting an online customer experience including foreign language accessibility, website responsiveness and search optimisation to ensure the activities and attractions can be easily found by potential visitors.
Launching the programme, Minister of State for the Office of Public Works and Flood Relief, Kevin Boxer Moran remarked, “ Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands, while still very new, is already making an impact on the ground. The enthusiasm of local businesses together with the progress already made can be seen across all corners of the region. By improving the online presence of attractions and activities this new initiative by Fáilte Ireland is sure to support the region to gain further recognition from potential visitors across the world.”
Applications to the programme are welcomed from organisations from the private and public sector as well as voluntary organisations. After a simple application process, selected applicants who meet the criteria stated by Fáilte Ireland will be invited to complete the Website Improvement Plan.
Once the plan is completed, participants will be eligible for funding of up to €30,000 from Fáilte Ireland to implement the recommended improvements. Match funding of at least 25 percent of the costs will have to be met by each participant.