A very appy year - Pitchup.com in 2013
Coo. Last year we wound down a bit in October. This year we’ve been partying like it’s 1999, sorry, we mean working like it’s still July. We’ve taken off big time in 2013 – gone from 424 bookable sites to 748 (so far), added 80 French sites , launched our mobile site, gone to conferences, got extensive coverage in the national press and added several more staff members to the team (and are still adding – see here for Pitchup.com jobs ).
Thusly, we bring you the Pitchup.com Review of the Year!
Of campsites, glamping sites, holiday parks and farms
Our sales team has doubled in size and they’ve all been working their collective socks off bringing more sites to Pitchup.com. We now have a French sales team too, which has upped our bookable French listings to 80 (again, so far), from only a few this time last year. And our account management team has also worked its socks off helping sites add their availability on Pitchup.com – we’re receiving several thousand queries a day about 2014 holidays and at the time of writing over 580 of our sites are available to book now for next year.
We’ve had stacks more farm sites this year too – they now account for 20% of all our sites and we sent 10,000 bookings to farms this year. And we’ve been as keen as Colman’s to get all areas of the country represented and help along their tourism industry: a quarter of listings in Cornwall now accept online bookings, compared with just six per cent of listings in England's north-west . Yes, even including the Lake District .
Finally, we’ve recently added a couple of sites in Spain, and our first in Portugal and Italy: Australia and the US, look out…
Go gadget go
Our mobile site and app are among our biggest tech developments this year (yes, we are bringing out an Android app as soon as poss) – and within weeks of launch we were named App of the Week by The Sun and an 'essential app' in Shortlist magazine . Developing a mobile site was among our scheming when we first launched in 2009, and it’s particularly timely these days, as Google estimates 40% of its searches are on mobile phones.
We’ve also overhauled and streamlined our manager portal, added a fantastique Tour de France routeplanner , completely redesigned our homepage, and had our first booking partners integrate with our system.
Visitors reached a peak of 65,000 daily, a jump of 300% from last year, and our mobile bookings so far have grown 1,406% vs 2012.
We’ve been featured in national and local press , on the telly (SuperScrimpers), on the wireless (BBC Scotland), and apparently there is a TV appearance in the offing which has prompted much worried discussion from certain members of the team about their ‘best side’.
Our blog has covered all sorts this year, from coastal critters to setjetting to budget days out , and we’ve sent out regular newsletters to our campsite owners and customers.
Out and about
We’ve been to three hugely successful conferences this year – Salon Atlantica in La Rochelle, PhoCusWright in Florida and Farm Business Innovation here in London – and so far for next year have lined up the BH&HPA in January as well as Salon Atlantica and Farm Business Innovation again. Ah, that’ll be why we’re getting lots of new French and farm sites…
We don’t like to boast (lies) but we are Very Chuffed Indeed at our testimonials page, with trumpet blowing on Pitchup.com’s behalf about our service in all respects, and saying we are the best thing since sliced bread. We’re starting to suspect that our account managers take bribes.
And our user reviews haven’t been too shabby either... Huzzah to all!
Apart from work, our main topics of conversation this year have been Nigella Lawson, words that give us a rash (‘nestled’), when to buy our Pitchup.com campervan (immediately), and whether or not eating carbs is healthy (the debate on this last is still raging).
- We’ve caught each other’s colds (we’re looking at you, tech, account management and content).
- Dan still does not make tea.
- We do not like meetings.
- Boy, can we drink.
So a very happy new year to you all – and huge huggy thanks for being with us this year as an owner or customer. If the former, please drop us a line with any queries, feedback, testimonials or general praise (latter two preferred, natch) – and if you’re a customer, please let us know your thoughts on the site, our mobile site and what you’d like to see in 2014 (soz, but 'world peace' or 'campsites on the moon' can’t be counted. Yet.)
It’s been a wonderful year – see you all in 2014!
The Pitchup.com team (so far!) xx
Tech: Matt , Mike and Pete
Sales: Kay , Gill , Suzanne and Ann
French sales: Isabelle , Jill and Liza
Account management: Marie and Sarah
Writing and social media: Laura