Epic Travel Website Fail From Seven West Media

7travel.com.au Aug 17 2016 (2)Sometimes you see a website and immediately connect. Other times you wonder what on earth is going on – and that is the case with the new site, 7travel.com.au, which launched today.

How can a website backed by one of Australia’s biggest media companies miss the mark so completely?

It’s vague and pointless, as in: what is the point? why am I here? what is this site supposed to be? After spending around 10 minutes on the site I still have no idea. The positioning and navigation is terrible.

I’m equally clueless after reading the press release from creator, Seven West Media, which owns the Channel 7 television network and West Australian newspaper.

The release is opaque and dense, packed with corporate double-speak that continually refers to “e-commerce” and cross-platform broadcast viewing opportunities.

It declares: “Through powerful storytelling with 7Travel, Seven West Media will deliver – in combination across our television, online and publishing assets – the inspiration, the insights and the transaction for those people to be inspired, learn and action their travel desires like never before.”

“Action their travel desires!” Not right now.

Seven Media also says the site carries “premium content for 104 destinations and travel experiences catering for all demographics from weekend getaways to overseas adventures”.

Yet somehow it feels empty.

Apparently there are also “shoppable content verticals to inspire, escape and transact” while the site “delivers integration with social channels”.

I could find none of that and to me the site is an epic fail. Just shows that creativity, direction and intent beats money every single time.

What do you think?

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4 thoughts on “Epic Travel Website Fail From Seven West Media”

  1. I also spent some time on the site and have to say calling it an epic fail is being kind!

    It looks like this is just another very poor attempt of a traditional media company to rescue their rapidly declining broadcast revenue with a cross digital integration. To call this a e-commerce inspired innovation is quite frankly an insult to all online retailers…..

    Will be interesting to see how the major travel companies respond….

  2. Martin, as a person involved in tourism promotion it is good that our industry’s propensity to meaningless waffle is identified. Can you imagine people actually talking to each other after a hard day’s night saying: “Darling, I introduced shoppable content verticals to inspire, escape and transact” while their partner replies “Yes, I am sure that delivers integration with social channels”. What planet are they on?

  3. I had a click around didn’t find it to be a good user experience. The images takes ages to load, the drop down postcode thing is annoying, and the top nav bar is confusing. I was reading an article and I clicked the “X” on the nav bar, thinking it would get rid of it, but it took me back to the previous page. I also hate infinite scroll.

    A better travel portal is their competition, elsewhere (from nine) which looks more like a travel magazine with a familiar website layout.

  4. From a design viewpoint, it looks to me like they’re going after mobile/tablet site visitors in the “exploration” or “inspiration” stage of a trip.

    For me, viewing it on a desktop, it did feel “empty”. Eye candy can get you only so far. And it’s a fine line between empty imagery and content worthy of reading .

    And I also found the nag to give them my postcode, a turnoff. I can only assume that will be used to provide “near me” search style results to people who do cave in, in the hope of getting something more to sink their teeth into.

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