P&O Cruises

Future-proof and scalable CMS

P&O Cruises decided to replace its existing CMS with a best-of-breed, off-the-shelf WCM solution that would enhance their site and improve its usability in the long run.

P&O Cruises wanted to rebuild their site with a number of solutions that could deliver enhancements and improvements to its online presence in the long run. "We wanted a CMS that would be future-proof and scalable" says Elliott Pritchard, New Media Manager, P&O Cruises. And they have chosen Episerver partner Nucleus for the project.

"Episerver CMS fulfills 98 percent of our requirements, as well as offering extra features like language localization and content mirroring, which other vendors don't offer. We wanted to offer our visitors greater interactivity in our community and Episerver Relate offers an off-the-shelf community where we could re-skin the presentation layer and integrate easily with the CMS."

Localization for different markets

P&O Cruises has a small editorial team managing content. "We only have three editors managing the site," says Pritchard. "Episerver CMS makes it easy for our editors to update and add content as and when we need to. Its localization functionality also enable us to create a different version of the site for our Australian clients, where dedicated telephone numbers and different booking conditions can be displayed." This is achieved with an IP sniffer which recognizes Australian visitors and they automatically see the version of the website tailored for their needs.

"For now we don't need to present the site in different languages, but it's great to know we can easily do it as we change our strategy," Pritchard says. Episerver CMS integrates with P&O Cruises' CRM system and booking process. Content on the booking pages are taken from the CMS and dynamically created to show, for example, a customer's itinerary, the cabin description or the deck they are going to be on.

Pushing content to separate sources

Content mirroring gives P&O Cruises the ability to preview and test website revisions on a production server before making a page live. Pritchard says "We've found the content mirroring functionality particularly useful as it meant we can push the same content to separate sources without the need to update it multiple times. It's a very positive feature and our work efficiencies have significantly improved as a result." Integration of search functionality and the CRM has also made a difference. Visitors can quickly find and plan their cruise by date, vessel, destination or a combination of different parameters. P&O Cruises is changing its CRM system to Microsoft Dynamics and the easy integration with Episerver CMS's .Net framework was 'another tick in the box' for P&O Cruises.

The community gives our website a greater breadth of appeal

Travelers can join the P&O Cruises' community. There are forums and blogs where they can ask questions, share experiences, upload photographs about their time spent onboard as well as prepare for a trip.

"The community gives our website a greater breadth of appeal. We wanted to reflect the onboard experience with the community online," comments Pritchard.

Passengers relate very closely to the P&O Cruises' brand. Once members sign in and create their own account they can then contribute to the community. They can join groups, for example, such as one that's based around a particular vessel and sailing slot. Each group exists as a mini community around a specific subject. Users can also add to a wall, upload images, contribute to the forum, choose events to attend and read articles. The forum allows users to post questions, reply and add tags to assist others searching for the same topic.

Increased numbers, visitors and revenues

Although the overall look and feel hasn't changed, the site has certainly been enhanced by increased functionality and has attracted more visitors. "There's been a 35% increase in unique visitors coming to the site, year-on-year," says Pritchard. Online revenues are up too, with an increase of 46 percent. "I know we have yet to push to the edge of what we can do with Episerver and I'm keen to see even more enhancements to the site," Pritchard says with an eye on the future.

We wanted a future-proof, scalable solution that has an extended feature set where we could localize content and add extra languages when we wanted.

Elliott Pritchard, New Media Manager, P&O Cruises

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Lindsey Cunningham

Partner contact
Lindsey Cunningham