Stagecoach North East has seen a positive response from its passengers following the launch of the company’s new transformational website in December 2015, with the region third in the country for the number of visits to the site.
The region came fourth in the country for the number of unique visitors and the Tyne and Wear 7-day megarider is also currently the ticket with the most sales on the site.
As part of the new online platform, Stagecoach introduced the UK’s first nationwide online bus planning service to help its customers access journey and ticketing information more easily.
Millions of customers across the north east are benefitting from the fully mobile site, with the local bus operator - which has depots in South Shields, Newcastle, Sunderland, Teesside and Hartlepool - recently launching its new live bus information service. This service enables passengers to see exactly when their bus is due at the stop and the stops and routes nearby, to help plan their journey more effectively.
The technology uses data generated from GPS (Global Positioning System) through the electronic ticket machines on Stagecoach North East buses and this will also help to improve future services. One example is that the company can improve the accuracy of timetables by tracking the long-term effects of increasing congestion on journey times.
The new website was designed to make it as simple as possible for passengers to plan and book their Stagecoach bus travel. The site is also accessible from mobile devices, allowing customers to call up journey information and buy tickets while on the move.
The development forms part of a three-year, £11million digital investment strategy which includes investment by Stagecoach in redeveloping its UK Bus online platform, delivering real-time information and improving payment options. In 2016, the transport group will also introduce a mobile app for customers as part of its strategy.
Stagecoach North East Managing Director Phil Medlicott said: “Our customers want seamless journeys – from planning their trip and buying tickets, to getting real-time travel information and catching the bus. That’s what we are aiming to deliver and we believe this website is now helping make life easier for all of our passengers, no matter how often or how little they use the bus.
“We’ll also continue to embrace further developments in technology to ensure we can deliver even better bus services for our customers in the future.”
The stagecoachbus.com site is fully accessible and meets WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines), complying with WCAG (A) as a minimum and WCAG (AA) wherever possible. It's possible to change text size and colour, as well as background colours, by altering the preferences or options in the users browser ensuring accessibility for users with poor sight and those who are colour blind.
Customers who want to offer their feedback can complete a feedback form on the site available on the homepage.
As well as investing in a new online platform, Stagecoach offers smart ticketing at all of its businesses across the UK and is working with other operators, and local transport authorities, on the delivery of further multi-operator smart ticketing options for bus users.