Only 29 per cent of visitor attractions provide online ticketing facilities in the UK, a report by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) has revealed.

While more than 90 per cent of attractions have their own websites, almost a third of them are not providing tech-savvy customers with a means to book tickets online.

In an industry where the customer experience is its key focus, embracing technology and utilising it in a meaningful way is paramount to breeding loyalty and satisfaction among patrons.

The report found that more than three out of four adults access the internet ‘on the go’, with page loading speed and number of pages playing a huge role in bounce rates.

“Today’s customers are more tech-savvy and have ever increasing expectations. Across the attractions sector, there are signs that customers want more innovative, immersive and interactive experiences which provide value for money,” PwC said in its report.

“Technology permeates throughout all aspects of our everyday lives and increasingly we take this for granted.

“Before a visit, guests are now spending more time online researching, planning and booking trips.”

The visitor experience is a top priority in the attractions industry as the report found that more than 90 per cent of adults under 35 are using social media on a regular basis.

It is clear that technology needs to be embraced in order to become truly successful as an attraction, whether it’s online booking facilities, wearable technology, cashless systems, queue busting technology, incorporation into the ride or experience itself, such as virtual reality, or even financial efficiencies from a business viewpoint.

Technology isn’t the only aspect of remaining relevant and up to date with current consumer needs. Attractions also need to continue reinvesting, the report concluded, as it found that, in the UK, most of the larger theme parks have some form of licence agreement with major Intellectual Property providers.

Meanwhile, the growth of technology has become one of the industry’s largest competitors – in-home digital entertainment and gaming. Despite this, it creates a space for attractions to provide unique experiences that can’t be replicated. This drive is forcing new products and events targeting specific target markets, the report found.

Image: Tookapic