Travel Wisconsin

The Ultimate Resource For Fun in Wisconsin Responsive Website
Travel Wisconsin Cities & Regions

The Wisconsin Department of Tourism promotes Wisconsin as a four-season travel destination to potential visitors, primarily in the Midwest. Ascedia set out to redesign and make it the ultimate resource for people to find fun and travel in Wisconsin. The goal? Increase travel expenditures, awareness and overall engagement and site visitors.

Responsive Design

Responsive UX Design to Meet the Needs of Every Visitor

Ascedia sought to meet the needs of visitors no matter what their stage of travel or preferred device. Our strategy included a responsive website design with inspirational content for explorers and planning tools for trip coordinators. It provides easy access to content related to nearby attractions while on the go, and easy ways for people to favorite, contribute or share their favorite Wisconsin travel information.

Site content was organized in clear categories, including Places to Stay, Things to Do, Dining, Events and Cities & Regions. A relational content structure allowed users to find featured and related content, as well as places nearby to guide planning, inspiration and discovery. Ascedia also conducted usability and prototype research to validate the site's navigation and ease of use.

award winning search

Award-Winning Search Strategy

Our SEO methodology included four key phases: 1) website audit, 2) keyword research/strategy, 3) link building & SEO management and 4) tracking & reporting. The content to be optimized is prioritized based on relevancy, utility and popularity among various user personas. A combination of dynamic programming, CMS functionality and ongoing optimization from SEO specialists make it a very efficient and effective process. Since the site's launch, an ongoing onsite optimization program has provided a significant increase in visits, engagement, organic sessions and conversions.

partner programs

Co-op & Partner Programs

One key area of the tourism business is industry partners, and Ascedia understands the importance of supporting these partners and has developed a variety of applications to support client programs. Examples include online co-op advertising programs, membership extranets, a dedicated event submittal form, eCRMs and partner microsites -- just to name a few! Travel Wisconsin's custom .NET CMS allows hundreds of Wisconsin tourism industry partners to easily manage their listings on, and the site also features co-op program deals and offers from around the site and allows people to click through to the partner site to book. To support ongoing improvement, performance metrics are collected and shared with partners. 

Image of a camera with a wifi icon, favorites icon and hashtag icon.

User-Generated Content

Along with a Trip Planner that allows visitors to create lists and save ideas for their next Wisconsin getaway, Ascedia integrated Olapic to enable users to post their own photos of Wisconsin sights directly to The application also pulls images from Instagram and Twitter using selected hashtags (#TravelWI, among others) and adds these to the gallery as well.

This gives travelers in the Commemorating stage of the Traveler's Journey an outlet to share their vacation photos while supporting the site's overall goals of providing a glimpse into the wonders of Wisconsin. Widgets are accessible from the home page, region pages and all trip ideas pages, and a user-generated content gallery is also available to make it easy to browse the photos.


Increased Sessions, Engagement & Traveler Spending

In its first year, saw amazing results thanks to a robust analytics implementation and search optimized build that ensured we would attract more organic traffic and be able to measure success. 

  • Sessions up 37% to nearly 4 million
  • Users up 37%
  • Pageviews up 129%
  • Pages per session up 68%
  • Average session duration up 13%
  • Bounce rate down 77%
  • Organic sessions up 26% to nearly 2 million
  • Sessions via social referral up 247%
  • Mobile sessions up 582%
  • Tablet sessions up 107%
  • Map/Guide downloads up 18%

The Travel Wisconsin site launched in February 2013 and had an immediate impact on Wisconsin tourism. The total impact of traveler spending in Wisconsin was $17.5 billion in 2013, up $700 million from $16.8 billion. Visitor growth in the first year after the site's launch was the fastest since 2010, with Wisconsin receiving 100 million visits that year (an increase of 3.5%).

Ascedia’s work for Travel Wisconsin has been recognized with 11 awards, including the Interactive Media Award for Best-in-Class Travel/Tourism website.