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Visit Scotland | Alba
Top: VisitScotland / Luigi Di Pasquale
Right: VisitScotland / Peter Dibdin, all rights reserved.

Supporting your business

How can we help?

One of our most important roles is to support you and we do this in a number of ways. We can help your business be the best it can be, reach your target markets more efficiently and provide vital resources to help you grow your business and maximise profits.

Our expert team can signpost you to other support mechanisms which might be helpful for your business such as staff training tools, marketing collateral and advice webinars.

Our site focuses on helping you achieve growth and improve quality across every point of the customer journey. We’re here to help, and this page gives you links on how we can do that.

  1. Quality Assurance (QA)
  2. Making digital work for you
  3. Responsible tourism
  4. Funding
  5. Screen tourism

1. Quality is key to future success

Our QA Scheme is one of the best in the world

We operate a Quality Assurance (QA) scheme for a wide variety of tourism businesses, providing official VisitScotland ratings and a valuable business development tool.

There’s never been a better time than now to be part of QA, when our visitors are looking for that extra bit of reassurance. QA schemes inform visitors about what to expect from your business, and helps them choose where to stay, visit and eat with confidence.

Learn more in our Quality Assurance section. 

QA expert advice and support 

Our highly experienced Quality & Tourism Advisors give an objective, impartial assessment of what it’s like as a customer to stay with you or visit your attraction. You’ll receive invaluable feedback and a detailed report on what works well and what could be improved to help you attain the level of quality you desire.

It can help you better understand your strengths and weaknesses and make informed decisions about investing in and developing your business to ensure it’s as economically sustainable, and profitable, as it can be.

Why join our Quality Assurance Scheme? Read more on what you can get from being part of our Scheme.

Hear from Alison Jack, one of our Quality & Tourism Advisors

Quality Assurance top tips

  • Tip one

    Read our Quality Assurance criteria for the whole range of business types to see if QA is for you.

    Due to current restrictions all QA visits are suspended, but we will furnish new applicants with an 'Awaiting Grading' logo which can be used straight away. 

  • Tip two

    Maybe you’re refurbishing your business, looking to achieve a specific grading or are completely new to the world of tourism altogether? If so, an advisory visit by one of our Quality & Tourism Advisors (QTAs) can be invaluable. Find out more about booking an advisory visit.

    Due to current Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, our face to face visits will not be happening. However, our QA team will continue to provide advice and guidance to businesses online and over the phone.

  • Tip three

    Do you have a food and drink offering? Then you should check out our Taste Our Best accreditation scheme, which celebrates businesses who serve up locally sourced, quality food and drink. 

  • Tip four

    Still not sure? You can contact our Customer Services team for more information or to join the Scheme. 

  • Tip five

    Make sure you promote your QA grading or Schemes your involved in.

    If you have one of our free web listings, ensure you keep that up-to-date with your Quality Assurance rating, We're Good to Go standard, opening times and any changes to service.

2. Let's make digital work for you

The only certainty about the future is that the digital landscape will move faster than ever before. 

Technology has provided so much to expand the visitor experience in recent years. We, the Scottish tourism industry, must adapt and diversify to ensure we are meeting the needs and expectations of the visitors of today.

Our digital guidance pages have practical advice on using digital technologies during the COVID-19 situation and beyond, plus the latest updates on online marketing support.

We can help you improve your digital skills

For maximum impact online, businesses need to be discoverable and bookable. The majority of people plan and book their holidays online – even more so now with the increased need to book in advance and manage the flow of visitors. Improve your digital skills, with our help.

It's time to brush up your skills on online marketing and take a look at our advice on making best use of digital technologies. Outside of our online information, we also offer face-to-face advice and learning. Take a look at our Digitial Skills section to discover more

Hear from Patrick O'Shaughnessy, our Industry Manager (Development)

Digital top tips

3. Responsible tourism

As we seek to rebuild tourism and look toward the future of the industry, it's important we put the welfare of communities and our natural environment at the heart of our approach.

Now is the moment for change; an opportunity to reset our plans for the visitor economy based on a more responsible future. 

From an individual business perspective becoming more sustainable can give businesses a competitive edge by generating greater community support for tourism, achieving cost savings and creating new marketing opportunities.

Read more on what responsible tourism is, why it's important, our approach to it and how you can adopt a more sustainable approach within our responsible tourism section.

Inclusive tourism 

Accessibility information is crucial for so many potential customers. By making a few simple changes to your business you can benefit from better return on investment, higher occupancy rates and a loyal and returning customer base.

View our inclusive tourism toolkit with advice on inclusive practices which benefit the widest range of customers possible, as well as the businesses that cater for them.

Hear more about Responsible Tourism from Caroline Warburton, our Regional Leadership Director

Inclusive tourism top tips

Hear from Marina DiDuca, our Inclusive Tourism Manager

4. Funding

We have information on the latest financial support available for tourism and events businesses impacted by Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Our funding section highlights other opportunities for financial support such as Themed Year Funding and the Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund (RTIF).

RTIF aims to create a strategic network of facilities which will meet visitor and community needs as the industry moves into the recovery phase of the National Action Plan.

Hear from Caroline Warburton, our Regional Leadership Director

Funding top tips

5. Screen tourism

Film and TV influences are a big draw for visitors coming to Scotland, and they can play a key role in ensuring the benefits of tourism are spread across Scotland.

As early as Local Hero to BraveheartHarry Potter and James Bond, Scotland’s on-screen credentials have had a knock-on effect for tourism.

Some film fans seek out the locations of their favourite flick giving them a visitor boost. We call it set-jetting – whereby jet-setters are drawn to a destination to visit on-screen locations.

Lights, camera… action

The impact of filmmaking in Scotland goes far beyond production spend. Over the years, film tourism has really developed and grown with the number of productions based here.

Scotland’s appearances on TV and film have the potential to reach huge global audiences and, with research finding that one in five visitors are inspired to visit after seeing it on-screen, the opportunities for the tourism industry are immense.

For film tourism it's about capturing the attention of an already captive market and encouraging them to explore far beyond what they see on screen.

Hear from Jenni Steele, our Film & Creative Industries Manager

Screen tourism top tips

  • Tip one

    View content on VisitScotland.com and share in your own communications to attract visitors, for example, itineraries your guests can follow.

  • Tip two

    Research film or TV shows near you and follow some avid fan groups to find out what they are looking for in terms of film / TV activities or places to visit.

  • Tip three

    Learn more about how TV and film influence and entice visitors to Scotland in our Research and Insights section