Free Discover Ballina Website Participation

Importance of the Web

The Internet provides the most cost effective way of communicating large amounts of information. Research has shown that the travel and tourism industry is one of the most highly researched categories on the web.

Does the Ballina Visitor Centre Have Its Own Website?

The Ballina Visitor Information Centre (BVIC) provides an interactive website providing information on where to stay, things to see and do, events, dining out, transport and a series of touring drives and is open to all tourism operators within Ballina Shire free of charge.

The website www.discoverballina.com utilises the publishing programme developed by Tourism New South Wales and has the same look and feel as the State tourism website that is produced by the Department of Tourism, Sport and Recreation.

This website publishing program was selected to save money on the development of databases, building websites, ongoing maintenance, system upgrades and hosting fees. The web publishing system also allows the BVIC to take core content from the State Tourism Data Warehouse (STDW), create extra pages and navigation, insert images and publish it all on a website, without the need for expensive developers and designers. Another key advantage of the program is it also enables tourism operators to update their product information on one database with the information being transferred to a variety of websites.

Who Can Participate on the Discover Ballina Website?

The objective of the Discover Ballina website is to provide a professional and user friendly website for consumers to motivate and assist them with deciding on where to stay in Ballina and see and do more things whilst in the Ballina Shire.

The Ballina Visitor Information Centre will display all Ballina Shire tourism operators on the Discover Ballina website free of charge that meet the following requirements and categories.

Accommodation Operators

The following categories for searching accommodation on the website are:

  • Backpacker/Hostel
  • Bed & Breakfasts
  • Caravan & Camping
  • Farm-Stays
  • Guesthouses
  • Hotels
  • Motels
  • Real Estate Agents
  • Resorts
  • Self Contained

Accommodation operators must meet the following requirements:

  • All accommodation operators must be classified into one of the standard STDW classifications (i.e. backpackers, bed & breakfasts, caravan & camping, farm-stays, guesthouses, hotels, motels, resorts, self contained units)
  • Accommodation operators must be included on the BVIC database
  • A copy of appropriate approvals and insurances are to be provide to the BVIC
  • Operators must provide up to 300 words of motivational description on their product
  • Operators must supply at least one image or logo in jpeg format and the resolution of the image must be higher than 72 dpi
  • All accommodation operators must provide rates on their rooms for peak and off peak seasons
  • No other accommodation booking services will be included on the Discover Ballina website
  • Due to the limitations of STDW, the section on real estate agents will include the real estate agent's name, phone number and website.

Attraction Operators

Attraction operators must meet the following requirements:

  • All attraction operators must be classified into one of the standard STDW classifications (i.e. a particular place or point of interest for a visitor 'C' museum, animal park, art gallery, national park)
  • Attraction operators must be included on the BVIC database
  • A copy of appropriate approvals and insurances are to be provide to the BVIC
  • Operators must provide up to 300 words of motivational description on their product
  • Operators must supply at least one image or logo in jpeg format and the resolution of the image must be higher than 72 dpi
  • All attraction operators must provide admissions fee and opening and closing times

Tours

Tour operators must meet the following requirements:

  • All tour operators must be classified into one of the standard STDW classifications (i.e. includes half, full or extended tours C river cruise, kayaking tour, learn to surf class)
  • Tour operators must be included on the BVIC database
  • A copy of appropriate approvals and insurances are to be provide to the BVIC
  • Operators must provide up to 300 words of motivational description on their product
  • Operators must supply at least one image or logo in jpeg format and the resolution must be higher than 72 dpi
  • All tour operators must provide the tour description, sequence, duration and price.

Events

Events must meet the following requirements:

  • All events must be classified into one of the standard STDW classifications (i.e. exhibitions, shows, sporting fixtures, festivals)
  • Events must be included on the BVIC database
  • Events organisers must provide up to 300 words of motivational description on their event
  • Event organisers must supply at least one image or logo in jpeg format and the resolution of the image must be higher than 72 dpi
  • All event organisers must provide detailed information on venue, confirmed dates and times, entry fees and event contact details
  • The event must be a regular occurring event
  • The event must attract visitors from outside the Ballina Shire
  • The event must have secured significant media exposure
  • The event's publicity must be supported through professional promotional collateral
  • The event must be supported through local, regional and national organizations

Note: Events that do not meet this criteria can be included on the Ballina Shire Council website for community information

Dining Out

The Discover Ballina website provides a dining out page listing cafes and takeaways, clubs and pubs and restaurants categorised into the regions of Alstonville, Ballina, Lennox Head and the Hinterland. To be included on the dining out section, operators must provide name, address, phone number and a short description of the product on offer

Cuisine operators can also be included on the attractions page if they provide:

  • Up to 300 words of motivational description on their product
  • At least one image or logo in jpeg format and the resolution of the image must be higher than 72 dpi
  • Opening and closing times

Transport Operators

The current format of the Discover Ballina website is somewhat limited in design at this stage due to the STDW guidelines. This format is currently being reviewed by Tourism New South Wales. However, until the format has been changed a transport page has been designed on the Discover Ballina website, which is divided into two categories on 'Getting To' and 'Getting Around' Ballina.

In the 'Getting To' Ballina section, transport information includes:

  • Airport Information
  • Air Services
  • Airport Shuttle Services
  • Bus Services

In the 'Getting Around' Ballina section, transport information included is:

  • Rental Cars
  • Car Services
  • Local Bus Services

Transport operators that fit into the above categories can be included on the website

providing that they provide name, address, phone number and website.

What are the Advantages of Participating on the Discover Ballina Website?

The key advantages:

  • FREE listing
  • FREE exposure on Australia and New South Wales's most popular websites including www.australia.com, www.visitnsw.com.au and www.sydneyaustralia.com.
  • One update allows information to be transferred to all sites
  • Ability to control information to ensure accuracy and reflect any changes promptly
  • Reminders given when membership and tariffs are due to expire
  • Updating is easy with intuitive product input screens, point and click
  • Links directly to your website and email address

Other Opportunities for Tourism Operators

Other commercial sites for your investigation include:

What is STDW?

STDW is a centralised database of tourism product and destination information within New South Wales. The content from STDW is transferred to Tourism New South Wales and Discover Ballina websites to create product listings.

New and existing members are responsible for entering and updating information in STDW at least once every six months. Automatic reminders are emailed to operators when membership and tariffs are due to expire. If you do not update your information once every six months, product listings will be deleted from Tourism New South Wales and Discover Ballina websites until the information is updated.

How Can I Access STDW?

To access STDW you need to obtain a username and password, which will allow you to enter your product details on STDW.

To receive your username and password email getconnected@tourism.nsw.gov.au or click 'register here' on the corporate website at www.tourism.nsw.gov.au/stdw

How Do I Enter My Product Details?

Once you receive your username and password you can start entering your product details:

  1. Open www.tourism.nsw.gov.au/stdw
  2. Double click on the STDW heading
  3. Enter username:
  4. Enter password:
  5. Click on Login button
  6. Click on Product Creation
  7. Select the Product Category your product fits into
  8. Commence entering your product details into the input screens. They are divided into manageable sections covering Contact Details, Establishment Details, Room or Tour Details and Rates.

Assistance: If you need any assistance with entering your product details on the corporate website please contact the Get Connected Team for personal assistance on 02 9931 1111 or email getconnected@tourism.nsw.gov.au.

Alternatively, you can contact the Ballina Visitor Centre to enter your product details on your behalf.

Enhancing your product listing: To enhance your product listing on the website we are asking operators to submit at least 1 image or logo in jpeg format with the resolution of the image more than 72 DPI that best reflects their product to balinfo@ballina.nsw.gov.au or provide it on floppy disk or CD at your earliest convenience.

Important to remember! Please do not forget that you have a product listing on the Discover Ballina website and regularly update your product details as changes occur.

Please click the links below to download specific updating tips for accommodation, attraction, tour and event products:

Ballina Coast Hinterland Ballina Water Ballina Byron Gateway Airport Community Spaces Northern Rivers Community Gallery MyRoadInfo MyBeachInfo