TfL’s social channels have played a key role in providing feedback on the Beta website
Our social media presence has been growing at an incredible pace in recent years as more and more users access the internet on mobile devices and real time information on the move becomes ever more important to our customers. To put that growth into context, just two years ago we had 2 Twitter feeds and 1 Facebook page with around 13,000 followers, and today we have 25 Twitter feeds and 2 Facebook pages with around 1.34 million followers.
As our audience has grown, interaction with our social content has risen dramatically
TfL’s Web Analysts look at how weather events and changing technology are impacting site traffic
An analyst likes unusual numbers – especially big ones, and a couple of what we call ‘weather events’ provided us with plenty of excitement in 2013. In October, the stormy weather saw record visits to TfL’s mobile website as commuters braved the adverse conditions to make their way to work. As those on the move sought out the latest travel information, nearly 730,000 visits were made to the mobile site on Monday October 28th, compared to 156,000 the previous Monday.
Looking back a little further, we had a record-breaking month in January 2013 as snow caused disruption to much of the country’s travel network . As the snow started to fall on January 18th, the desktop site was visited over a million times between 10am and 6pm – nearly 4 times the usual Friday traffic and TfL’s websites overall received nearly 5 million more visits during the month compared to the previous January (22m vs 17.3 m).
October 28th 2013 saw nearly 730,000 visits to the TFL website
Today we’ve put the final features into our beta website. This means it’s finished and ready to replace our existing site. We’re going to run the two in parallel for a little while longer to give you the chance to comment on the new stuff and to check everything is working as expected. We’ll also use the time to make a few final tweaks and fix any major bugs.
Tube status update
In this release we’ve added…
- Bus route maps
- Tube status interactive map
- Fares and single fare finder
- National Rail status board
- Website search
- Travel maps section
As always we really value your feedback so please let us know what you think and if you have any ideas for improving things further.
Usage and feedback
We’re getting around 5% of our normal website users on the beta site at the moment which is great and shows some of you have taken to the site as a main source of travel information and journey planning.
We’ve had 13m page views in 4m visits from 2m unique users since launch and received over 6,000 feedback forms.
The usage in page views, visits and uniques is shown below.
Site traffic since beta launch
Many people love the new look, the fact it works well across mobile, tablet and desktop, and features like Journey Planner and embedded Google maps. Some of your comments have highlighted things which have not been working so well, and enabled us to improve them. Other comments reflect the fact that the site is a beta and there’s been elements which have not been available until now.
We still have some features which are relatively undiscovered like ‘Nearby’ and ‘Stations, stops and piers’ and we’d love your feedback on these in particular.
We’re now moving into the final stages of planning for the switch-over so watch this space for news about our plans.
Thanks to all of you who have given us so much feedback so far – please keep it coming, we really are listening to what you have to say.
Hi, it’s James again. In my last article, I talked about some of the work going on behind the scenes to serve the data you see in our new beta site, a few of the moving parts that make it work, and hinted at how you will soon be able to leverage this great functionality in your own apps and sites. Now I want to talk about the geolocation and ‘place’ data we’ve added, from a technical perspective.
As you may already know, we have now released our latest drop of the site into beta. This last drop – drop 3 – is the biggest and most significant release to beta yet, because it contains some great new tools and integrated visualisations of the many TfL data sources we orchestrate.
Today we’ve launched the third major release into our ever-improving beta site. This one has two cool new tools to help you get around London using all the services that we have to offer.
Nearby is a completely new tool which places you on a map and shows you all the Tube, bus, river, Overground, DLR, National Rail and Cycle Hire locations around you.
You can interact with these on the map and get live information for all of them (apart from National Rail, which we’ll add in due course).
I’m Gerard, and I work on the data side of the new Journey Planner, contributing to its technical specification.
Complementing the award-winning user experience work being done on the new website, we are hard at work ensuring that the dataset which powers Journey Planner is constantly being improved to meet the ever-growing demands of website users and open data subscribers.
Hi I’m James, the technical team lead for the API workstream at TfL Online. I am writing this post because there has been some talk in the press about our new API, and as Phil mentioned in his last post we are preparing to release our third major update to beta.tfl.gov.uk. This update (drop 3) will add significant new functionality that we hope you will find intuitive and helpful. I thought it might be useful to start by giving you a peek at some of the work that goes on here, behind the scenes.