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Bluestorm transforms website for The Deep

As a City of Culture “Angel” and an important landmark in East Yorkshire, the marketing team at The Deep wanted to ensure that submarium’s impressive visitor experience had the same impact online.

Bluestorm’s web team were tasked with designing and building its new website, which launched last week. Not only has it adopted a new look, but there is a whole host of new features, from interactive tours to an updated e-commerce section, where people can buy gifts and merchandise.

Becky Leach, Marketing Manager at The Deep, said the aim was to create a site that was both engaging and entertaining for a number of audiences.

She said: “Rather than giving a flat visual and all the general information that you would expect on a website of this nature, we wanted to make the pages come alive.

“There are so many different audiences that we wanted the site to reach and appeal to. As well as being a visitor attraction, The Deep also has a Business Centre, evening restaurant and corporate product to promote so we had to ensure that the site contained key information for these products. Careful consideration was taken into the sitemap and user experience to ensure that they can find what they are looking for quickly and efficiently.

“What many people don’t realise is that The Deep is a charity. We carry out vital research and conservation work in the wild, and we really wanted to showcase this to our customers.”

Jake Ingleby, Senior Online Marketing Consultant at Bluestorm, who headed up the development of the new website, said a key objective was to grab the user as soon as they clicked onto the homepage.

He said: “For us, when going to an aquarium, there is an expectation from the visitor of a dark room with a big blue viewing window. We wanted to make an impact and give them exactly what they'd expect by coming. After all, choosing what to do with the family is an emotional choice.

“We introduced a range of insightful videos to play on the homepage – footage taken from the actual aquarium itself. The Deep had some fantastic photographs, which we really wanted to show off, so we made the most of these across the site, showing in full screen and vibrant colours.

“Development was tricky, as we’d find ourselves getting mesmerised just watching the video, but the homepage needed to have impact. The ‘Take the Tour' section is also key for us. Anyone who hasn’t been or doesn’t know much about The Deep might want re-assurance that it is not a small visit. The tour is not only lovely to look at, but also gives the user some expectation of what they will experience, as well as some fun facts.”

The website can be viewed at www.thedeep.co.uk

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