Famed for its sandy beaches, traditional coastal attractions and bracing sea air, Skegness has been attracting millions of tourists for well over a century.
It ranks consistently among the most visited UK tourist destinations and local authorities say the visitor economy is worth millions each year.
But a digital marketing expert believes Skegness is ‘invisible’ online and missing out on hundreds of thousands of potential visitors due to a lacklustre internet campaign.
Brett Dixon, whose Skegness based DP Online Marketing company, is one of only two Google accredited partners in Lincolnshire, fears the resort’s web presence is failing to direct visitors to sites which promote the town.
“All you see is half hearted attempts to market the town, which, with the greatest respect, seem to be out of touch,” he said.
DP Online’s latest blog, published today, revealed that despite there being 368,000 internet searches a month with Skegness related terms, the resort’s official website is 186th in Google’s listings, on page 19.
“We have a saying in our office - the best place to hide a dead body is on page two of Google,” wrote Mr Dixon.
“This is because 72.4 per cent of clicks in search results go to the top five listed websites and only 1.5 per cent of clicks go to page two of Google.
“For the term ‘Skegness’ the official website is on page 19 - almost invisible.”
Topping the search rankings are privately run sites, aimed at generating advertising revenue rather than promoting the town.
Mr Dixon believes East Lindsey District Council’s Visit Skegness & Mablethorpe website must feature above these sites, or risk losing potential visitors.
“If a potential visitor to the town sees some of the town’s marketing offline and wants to look online for further information, they land on an unofficial website, cannot find the information they need, potentially the town loses a visitor,” he said.
Mr Dixon believes the district council needs to update its website regularly with fresh enticing content linked with other websites and promoted through social media.
“Google rewards sites that produce quality, updated content,” he said.
“Once that site’s alive and kicking Google will list it more highly but until that happens, there’s no way it will deliver.”