Online Sales Jump Triple Digits for South Dakota Tourism

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In just one month, the South Dakota Office of Tourism’s online sales increased 257 percent. The triple-digit increase can be attributed to the Office’s newest Web-based program, Digital Revolution.

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This is cutting edge. There’s nothing else like it. No other state in the union is doing what we have done this past year.

In just one month, the South Dakota Office of Tourism’s online sales increased 257 percent. The triple-digit increase in February can be attributed to the Office’s newest Web-based program, Digital Revolution.

Gov. Mike Rounds unveiled plans last year for the Digital Revolution - a new travel Web site with opportunities for everyone in the visitor industry, both large and small, to control their own content and gain valuable exposure on the home page of South Dakota's official tourism page.

“Photos, videos and an online booking mechanism help to make our online visitors’ experiences even better,” says Gov. Mike Rounds. “This is cutting edge. There’s nothing else like it. No other state in the union is doing what we have done this past year. ”

February 2010 was the first full month of operation for Digital Revolution. Compared with the same time period in 2009, the new TravelSD.com has seen dramatic increases in online sales and visitor engagement.

Every city, attraction, activity, lodging, dining, shopping and traveler service can become a Digital Revolution partner. By paying a one-time fee of $250, businesses can add and edit their own descriptions (hours, features, contact information, etc.) and upload photos and videos. Related destinations, activities, vacation packages, events and news stories are automatically connected to businesses and displayed on their Web pages. For an additional $250, partners can add a booking widget, which allows visitors to book their vacation directly from TravelSD.com.

"There are nearly 300 partners signed up to be a part of the program, but there’s always room for more," the Governor says. "Our vision is to have every destination, hotel, motel, hunting lodge, campground, restaurant, gift shop and attraction be a part of Digital Revolution.”

Visitors to the Web site can add items to a personalized Trip Planner or click to book online. Other opportunities for engagement include requesting vacation guides, signing up for monthly e-mails targeted to their individual interests, and uploading travel photos.

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Wanda Goodman
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