The digital destination is a mobile-first, personalized website to inspire and inform travelers.
Appnovation recently launched the latest version of Visit California’s consumer website, VisitCalifornia.com, a personalized and mobile-first experience that promotes California as a preeminent tourist destination and showcases the state’s abundance of offerings.
The site launch comes in the midst of a global pandemic that has had an unprecedented impact on travel. While California continues to adjust its reopening guidelines to slow the spread of COVID-19, the site serves as a resource letting visitors know how to travel responsibly and linking to local information regarding regulations and openings, as well as serving up inspiration for future travel.
The new website enables Visit California to adapt during these ever-changing times by showcasing communities that are open for business, promoting road trip content, supporting the needs of in-state travelers, and amplifying user-generated content that is produced and developed by other travelers.
Appnovation worked with Visit California on the full redesign and replatforming of the new website, providing user design consulting, user experience strategy and programming services. The mobile-first website integrates UGC content along with travel videos and podcasts into a flexible technical platform. The website also features personalized content based on user interests and past searches, the ability for users to save and bookmark content to be accessed later, advanced map functionality so users can plot locations and routes for their travels, and an advanced search engine and multiple routes to find content based around location or interest.
“The new Visit California website was designed with the user in mind, meaning it had to be easy-to-use while inspiring wanderlust for one of the most diverse and scenic travel destinations in the U.S.,” said Anton Morrison, VP of Experience Design at Appnovation. “Appnovation worked with Visit California to create a mobile-first website that allows users to find inspirational content, traveler information and planning tools in an intuitive way.”
Visit California’s new website is also home to the Road Trip Republic digital hub - the digital destination to get travelers inspired to plan and share their ultimate California road trip. This hub, which launched in summer 2019, has already received six Awards of Excellence for Appnovation and Visit California at the 2020 Communicator Awards in the website and mobile categories for the digital hub.
Additional features of the new site include an updated menu bar, which organizes content into user-friendly search categories. These include places to visit, things to do, and the California Now blog, which highlights timely stories and deals throughout the Golden State. Users can also easily access travel videos, free travel guides, Visit California’s newsletter, the California Now podcast and information on California Welcome Centers.
To help visitors make informed decisions, the site’s menu bar features a Travel Tips section that includes the Responsible Travel Code, asking visitors to travel with RESPECT and observe seven best practices including putting safety first and educating themselves on local guidelines before traveling. The code lives in the Responsible Travel Hub, found at VisitCalifornia.com/respect, which offers need-to-know information on visiting California restaurants, hotels, parks and more.