As a native Virginian, I was excited when our first Virginia partner, Visit Williamsburg, signed on with Zartico. From field trips to Colonial Williamsburg growing up, to summer trips to the Premium Outlets, to volleyball tournaments, I always found a reason to visit Williamsburg. You just feel like a part of history while there and I’ve even started my own traditions as I’ve grown older. Every year, my college friends and I make it a point to meet up during Christmas Town at Busch Gardens. This tradition grows even more special as families start to grow and I watch my friends’ children get to experience the area for the first time, just as I did as a child.
One of my favorite parts of the onboarding and implementation process at Zartico is learning about destinations. As a Zartico Data Advisor, I have the opportunity to research and learn about the destination, including points of interest within the destination that are pivotal to the visitor economy. As the pandemic restrictions are starting to lessen, I am also secretly creating lists and itineraries for all the places I want to visit.
We analyze the visitor behavior between places of interest in the destination over time. For this analysis, we are looking at the dyadic relationship between points of interest. For example, if someone went to a particular place of interest, what was the next place in town they visited? In the visitor flow visualization for Visit Williamsburg, we could clearly see a lot of movement between historic attractions, family-friendly places and shopping destinations. We also saw that visitation behavior varied between Virginia residents and people from out-of-state.
To further analyze visitor behavior, we focused on a specific weekend, selecting July 4th weekend. We saw strong visitation between the shopping destinations, but also observed visitation to sites where there were special events geared to the holiday.
When we dug deeper into the data, we compared the visitation patterns of those who traveled from within Virginia versus out-of-state visitors. In-state visitors spent more time at shopping destinations, the beach and those places that held special events. You could surmise that they were familiar with the region and knew exactly where to go in the city.
Alternatively, if we look at out-of-state visitors during the same weekend, we see that their visitation patterns are more dispersed throughout the destination as they visited more points of interest that are unique to Williamsburg. People from out-of-state explored more, which was exactly the marketing message Visit Williamsburg wanted to convey.
Just a short road trip away, I can’t wait to explore more of Williamsburg and see how my movement through the destination compares, because if you tracked me I would be everywhere. Wandering does not show that you’re lost, it just shows you like to blast off and explore... like a firework on the 4th of July.
Visitor Flow, July 3, 2020 - July 5, 2020
Virginia Residents, July 3, 2020 - July 5, 2020
Non-Virginia Residents, July 3, 2020 - July 5, 2020