Discover Stortford is a project which comes under the umbrella of Bishop’s Stortford Business Improvement District (BID), an organisation formed from over 300 town centre businesses. The aim of Discover Stortford is to raise the profile of the town centre as a great retail, tourist, entertainment, and business destination and improve the experience of the town centre for those who visit, live or work in the town.
Having created the original branding and style for both the BID and the Discover Stortford offerings, Simpsons Creative were invited to pitch for this latest BID Bishop’s Stortford website design project, against six other agencies over three rounds, and subsequently, following both written submission and interview process, won the contract.
The brief was to produce a website that served as an introduction and guide to Bishop’s Stortford shops, services, news, events and more. The title chosen for the website – Discover Stortford – says it all. If Bishop’s Stortford BID was the plan of action developed by and on behalf of local businesses, who already know the town well, Discover Stortford was to serve as a ‘shop window’ to attract and incentivise both visitors and residents alike; to create awareness and help to build engagement with the public.
Bearing in mind how it was to be used, we recommended that the core of the site should be an interactive map and directory broken down by category (shopping, entertainment and leisure, business and professional etc) together with a a full listing with web links that allowed visitors to zero in on the services or amenities they were looking for.
In addition, we worked alongside the client to establish useful information pages on local news and events, parking and transport, competitions and offers within the town centre. Also, especially important to the client, was that the news, events, and jobs pages of the Discover Stortford website, needed to be simple to access and quickly updateable, which we achieved by incorporating an intuitive content management system.
The site was designed and built and styled to reflect the branding, and to work in conjunction with the umbrella BID website. The client was delighted with the result and over the year since its launch the Discover Stortford website has had a measurable impact on the promotion of Bishop’s Stortford via visitor numbers, and proved a significant resource for enquiries into events, the jobs market, parking, and general information on the town itself.