TOURISM - An International Interdisciplinary Journal

Volume 58 / 2010 / Number 1 ISSN 1332-7461 

Ali YAYLI, Murat BAYRAM

Web-based destination marketing: Do official city culture and tourism websites' in Turkey consider international guidelines?



Abstract:
The Internet plays a significant role in attracting visitors and facilitating their trip planning and reservations. Therefore, it is essential for city tourism websites to evaluate and improve website performance in order to keep and increase their online presence and competitiveness in the marketplace. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the official websites of City Culture and Tourism Directorates (CCTD) in Turkey based on the facilities and services offered by the websites. In order to examine the content and function of these websites, content analysis is used and a structured around 40 checkpoints. In total of 79 CCTDs websites were analyzed. The survey revealed that websites are generally informative but lacked interactive facilities. Most city tourism websites do not currently maximize the capability of the internet in destination marketing. While the most frequently features in websites are culture/history information, links to main page, communication information, image gallery, video, links to other sites, search capabilities and index page. The results also show that CCTDs are not utilizing the Internet to its full potential to effectively market their destinations. It is recommended that these organizations evolve their websites into marketing tools to capitalise on the potential internet market.