Web site accessibility of German and UK tourism information sites

Web site accessibility of German and UK tourism information sites Information exchange is important in any transaction but is perhaps particularly important for transactions in the travel and tourism industry where information gratification plays such a crucial role. Internet‐based technologies allow organisations to exchange information with an often geographically dispersed and wider marketplace without a loss of quality. However, merely being online, publishing a Web site is not enough. Organisations need to ensure their Web sites obtain “traffic” or “hits” and, importantly, that the content of their sites is accessible. Accessible Web sites mean access for all, accommodating different user capabilities and needs. This research examines the emerging competitive and legal imperatives to consider the issue of Web content accessibility as well as what makes for an accessible Web site. In spite of the strong competitive and legal imperatives for accessibility, a survey of 100 UK and German‐based travel and tourism Web sites conducted here revealed disappointingly low levels of accessibility. As the Internet and Web come to play a more important part in individual lives, this finding suggests that many organisations need to work harder to ensure that their often considerable investments achieve what they set out to do – communicate effectively with what they hope is a larger marketplace. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png European Business Review Emerald Publishing

Web site accessibility of German and UK tourism information sites

European Business Review, Volume 16 (6): 13 – Dec 1, 2004

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2004 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0955-534X
DOI
10.1108/09555340410565404
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Information exchange is important in any transaction but is perhaps particularly important for transactions in the travel and tourism industry where information gratification plays such a crucial role. Internet‐based technologies allow organisations to exchange information with an often geographically dispersed and wider marketplace without a loss of quality. However, merely being online, publishing a Web site is not enough. Organisations need to ensure their Web sites obtain “traffic” or “hits” and, importantly, that the content of their sites is accessible. Accessible Web sites mean access for all, accommodating different user capabilities and needs. This research examines the emerging competitive and legal imperatives to consider the issue of Web content accessibility as well as what makes for an accessible Web site. In spite of the strong competitive and legal imperatives for accessibility, a survey of 100 UK and German‐based travel and tourism Web sites conducted here revealed disappointingly low levels of accessibility. As the Internet and Web come to play a more important part in individual lives, this finding suggests that many organisations need to work harder to ensure that their often considerable investments achieve what they set out to do – communicate effectively with what they hope is a larger marketplace.

Journal

European Business ReviewEmerald Publishing

Published: Dec 1, 2004

Keywords: Internet; Information exchange; Tourism management

References

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