Destination Benchmarking Surveys

What are the benefits of destination benchmarking?

The overall benefit of benchmarking is that it provides a customer-focused basis on which to set priorities for action and improve the destination product.

Destination Benchmarking measures and compares opinions of visitors and residents, on a wide range of factors or indicators that together comprise the ‘visitor experience’. Ratings are provided for services including: the cleanliness of streets and public toilets; adequacy of car parking; the quality of local pubs/restaurants; the friendliness of local people/traders, etc. Indicator scores for similar types of destinations across the country are then compared to identify relative performance and best practice.

A key feature of the destination benchmarking service is the use of a national standard methodology, covering all aspects of the survey including: interviewing period; minimum sample size; questionnaire design and reporting. A central database holds all the profile and scoring data for individual destinations, and is used to collate overall averages for each destination type.

The data provided by the survey can be used to:

Identify strengths and weaknesses, since under performance against key competitors can be a powerful influence on decision makers
Securing additional resources for visitor management projects, often by identifying needs which can be met by funding from the budgets of other Council departments
Raising the profile of the visitor management function within the town and helping to secure political support for improvements to the town
Influencing product suppliers and the private sector to improve, acting as a driver for town initiatives aimed at improving standards
Generating positive PR from benchmarking findings, playing a positive role in building civic pride
Helping to identify best practice amongst a range of destinations which can be shared