Marine groups detail online progress

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The Marine Retailers Association of the Americas unveiled a new website and Dominion Marine Media reported significant growth in website visitors.

The MRAA launched a new website that it said will change the way the group and its members conduct business.

The site incorporates a database management system, customer relations management and e-newsletter tools, e-commerce opportunities, event registration functionality, news feeds and membership-only content. Also included is an easy-to-use content management system.

“To put it simply, this new website provides us the platform to reinvent the way we do business,” MRAA president Matt Gruhn said in a statement. “This allows us to interact with our members in ways we’ve never explored and it provides much greater value to both our retailer and supplier membership experiences.”

The site, created by Lighthouse Media Solutions, allows members to maintain a profile and interact with all other MRAA members through direct messaging, blogging, article ratings and commenting, as well as chat functionality.

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Dominion Marine Media, the division of Dominion Enterprises that operates YachtWorld.com, BoatTrader.com and Boats.com, announced significant growth in unique visitor traffic, as reported by comScore.

ComScore released data showing that the number of unique visitors to BoatTrader.com increased by 44 percent, to 676,000, in January 2012 compared with 468,000 in December 2011. Likewise, YachtWorld.com saw an increase of 23 percent and Boats.com an increase of 40 percent during the same period.

“As the boating industry faced challenges over the past few years, we modified our marketing strategy to grow brand awareness online in a more innovative and collaborative way,” Dominion Marine Media director of marketing Courtney Chalmers said in a statement.

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