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Sykes Holiday Cottages

A true strategic digital partnership.

1.

Background

Sykes Holiday Cottages is the UK’s leading and fastest-growing independent holiday cottage specialist, with over 200,000 breaks booked each year across 10,000 holiday homes.

From romantic, cosy beachside cottages for two to country manor houses that sleep 20 or more – couples, families and reuniting friendship groups alike can find their perfect escape.

Founded 25 years ago, Sykes Holiday Cottages is a renowned UK holiday brand and has won the British Travel Award for Best Large Holiday Cottage Booking Company for five consecutive years.

We have had the pleasure and privilege of collaborating on a number of exciting projects recently as a result of our ongoing partnership.

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“From the initial brief and project inception all the way through to delivery, Clicky provided fantastic support to our internal team. We’re over the moon with the projects and wouldn’t hesitate to work with Clicky in the future.”
Chris Algar, Head of SEO, Sykes Holiday Cottages.
“The digital brochure is the perfect opportunity for our customers to get real time results tailored to them, in a format they want. Moving away from bulk brochure sends with no personalisation, to giving our customers the interactive tool to create a highly targeted and personalised brochure is a really exciting step forward for Sykes. We’re looking forward to seeing the results.”
Jillian Courtney, Head of CRM, Sykes Holiday Cottages
2.

Blog Redevelopment

Our first project with Sykes Holiday Cottages saw us redesign and redevelop their blog to improve user experience whilst amplifying the value this provided to their SEO efforts.

Whilst the existing wider Sykes Holiday Cottages website provided visitors with an aesthetically pleasing, intuitive and user-centric solution to find their ideal holiday cottage, the blog was somewhat dated in its approach. The client required an experienced digital partner to help them plan and deliver a results-focused, cutting-edge solution that better aligned with the rest of the website, the ambitious growth plans and SEO improvement goals moving forward.

Working closely with their experienced team, our designers developed a modern, user-friendly blog creative that complemented the style of the main site. We incorporated a wide range of new features such as author profiles, enhanced categorisation and search functionality to make it easier for audiences to find content as well as delivering a more human and welcoming feel to this area of the site.

The blog was built using WordPress, an intuitive CMS that allows the Sykes Holiday Cottages team to easily administer, upload and amend content whenever they need to. It is also fully responsive, rendering beautifully and loading quickly on any device.

Many users can find reading content on the mobile web a slow and frustrating experience, so we made sure to optimise the blog using the three key areas or AMP development: AMP HTML, the AMP JS library and the Google AMP Cache. Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) offered a solution to ensure the audience could always find and read what they are looking for, without being impacted by unnecessary code or content.

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3.

‘Inspire Me’

The client also identified a new opportunity to reach, support and communicate with potential holidaymakers through the production of a range of useful online resources and guides.

The new ‘Inspire Me’ area acts as a fantastic content section for prospective and existing customers alike, providing relevant and engaging information to enable holidaymakers to explore various UK holiday destinations and types at the click of a button.

This new feature focuses on supporting the SEO efforts of the business through keyword diversification, whilst providing a quick, intuitive and mobile optimised experience to help inspire audiences when searching for a new staycation experience.

The ‘Inspire Me’ microsite is built within WordPress and sits alongside the core brand site to provide a useful reference point that offers greater detail around holidaying experiences with useful guides on where to stay, what to do, where to eat and drink, events and travel information to name just a few.

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4.

Personalised Digital Brochure

Clicky were also commissioned to provide a new solution to further engage first-time visitors who were in the early stages of planning their holiday but weren’t ready to book immediately.

The client was keen to incorporate personalisation tactics to tailor online experiences to individuals, very much reflective of the brand ethos. The chosen option was a unique and bespoke digital brochure that enabled a customised output for each individual visitor, whilst ensuring data capture as part of Sykes Holiday Cottages’ lead generation strategy.

Historically the business mailed over 300K printed brochures annually, however Sykes began to see a decline year-on-year in the ROI generated. In addition, a refocus on CRM to deliver personalised, targeted and timely communications meant that the next logical step was to transfer the brochure online as an interactive tool. Not only are Sykes Holiday Cottages working hard to reduce their carbon footprint, they are also ensuring that they deliver activity that combines both UX and design, with the ability to measure the metrics that matter.

The digital brochure was built utilising Laravel, an advanced and modern PHP framework. Users have a number of different options to customise their brochure, in accordance with their preferences, helping them find their perfect cottage. Once an ideal holiday has been defined, a personalised digital brochure is generated online with a unique URL, providing options to download, share or email to friends and family.

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