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Summary and next steps

Get involved and help make a difference! Despite some encouraging improvements in recent visitor spend and numbers, the long term performance of Scottish tourism has been modest.

2020 logo

If trends in overnight visitor spend over the last forty years were to continue, we would see little or no real growth in the coming decade. 

By 2020 it is also expected that over 99% of countries in the world will have a tourism product, offering today???s sophisticated visitors a greater choice of destinations than ever before.

If Scotland is to increase its share of this increasingly competitive marketplace, we need to improve our performance collectively and individually. We need to provide high quality, authentic visitor experiences that appeal to our key markets and make us stand out from the crowd. And we need to combine this with fantastic customer service once visitors arrive in Scotland.

The Tourism Scotland 2020 strategy outlines ambitious plans to grow tourism revenues by £1bn a year, which will make a real difference to the sustainability of the industry and individual businesses.

But we need your help to achieve this. Each and every one of us within the industry needs to rally round the strategy, embracing its vision, giving it our full support, and taking it forward in our own areas.

By making improvements to your business and working with others across the industry you can improve your bottom line. At the same time you’ll be contributing towards the future of the Scottish tourism industry.   

Wildlife tourism

The next steps for your business

Understand your markets and visitors

  • Make sure you’re aware of how the tourism landscape has changed, how you need to react, and where the new opportunities are likely to lie.  By making the most of these opportunities you’ll be well placed to inspire visitors to spend more, stay longer, come back more often, and recommend you to others.
  • Find out who the visitors to your business are and what they’re looking for by gathering customer feedback. Once you have the relevant information at your fingertips, think about how you can use this knowledge to develop new products, services or campaigns that will improve their experience and delight them.

Recognise your assets

  • Look at your business and local area objectively. List the assets available to you, and think creatively about how these could be used to offer better products and services and increased value for our visitors. Once you’ve identified your particular strengths, use these to market your business and make it really stand out.


  • Remember, it’s not just about promoting your existing assets more effectively. Once you’ve identified your current strengths, think about what future products and services your visitors may wish.  Seek information from them about what they are interested in and look for ways to build those activities round your offering to provide added value


Assess your customer experience

  • Put yourself in your visitors’ shoes. Ask them how they perceive your business at every step of the customer journey, from the point where they pick up your marketing material or access your website, to when they leave. Then use that feedback to make changes and improvements to the experience at all points in the customer journey.
  • Keep an eye on what other businesses and other areas are doing. It’s a fantastic way of picking up new ideas and, equally, learning from their mistakes! Better still, go and experience their offer as a visitor. This will give you some great pointers as to what you could be doing to improve the visitor experience in your own business.

Collaborate with others

  • Get to know the other businesses in your area. Make a list of any who could add value to your own offer and speak to them about how you could work together to help visitors get the most out of their trip. Remember, visitors are looking for memorable, ???authentic??? experiences, so think creatively about how you could offer your visitors something really special or unique.
  • Provide your visitors with plenty of recommendations for other quality Scottish products and services that they can sample during their stay. As well as satisfying your visitors, your own business profile will be boosted by being associated with other high quality offers.
  • Look at the markets and sectors that have been identified as being of greatest priority for Scotland. By collaborating with others, could you use them to attract new customers? Think about who you could team up with to develop high quality, great value offers, packages and experiences around them.
  • Check out the groups or business networks that are most relevant to you and find out how you can get involved. Membership of these groups is a fantastic way of sharing best practice and improving the quality and consistency of the visitor experience.

Keep in touch

We???re keen to know how your business is contributing to achieving the ambitious goals laid out in the Tourism Scotland 2020 strategy. Let us know how you???re making the most of new and profitable business opportunities by contacting us at