Off Beat: Please go to www.visityubasutter.com
Hordes of tourists will pull Yuba-Sutter out of its economic funk.
At least that's what they're betting on in Yuba City, where the City Council allocated $210,000 to the Chamber of Commerce's latest — and greatest — plan to draw those money-spending outsiders to the greater Yuba-Sutter area.
How's it gone so far?
According to the plan the chamber gave the council, things aren't going so well. They're not going. Period.
Take, for example, the website established in 2001 to tout all that Y-S has to offer.
You didn't know there was a website for that? Well, you're not alone.
The chamber's report noted that Alexa, a "worldwide recognized website evaluation company owned by Amazon," keeps tabs on how many hits websites receive.
Alexa monitors more than 30 million of them.
Where did www.visityubasutter.com rank?
It came in at No. 18,753,172. Woe to No. 18,753,173.
That ranking "reflects an estimate of the site's lack of popularity," the chamber report deftly noted.
To hammer home the point even more, Alexa offered a social media analysis.
"The social components evaluation shows that the site has only been shared three times on Facebook and virtually has zero presences on any the social media platform," the report said.
So, plainly, there's no place to go but up for Yuba-Sutter.
To date, the chamber said, "A lack of community consensus/knowledge concerning tourism and visitor traffic is evident in the area. Very little regional marketing or partnerships with out of county organizations for tourism efforts have been solidified."
And, of course, there hasn't been enough money thrown around to make a dent.
Speaking of spending money, over in Sonoma County, where tourists actually go, the tourism budget is $5.3 million, up about 6 percent, according to a recent report in the Press-Democrat newspaper.
Hotel occupancy rates increased 6.2 percent last year. The occupancy rate rose to 67.1 percent, according to Smith Travel Research, which tracks the sector.
The average daily room rate rose 3.6 percent to $116.80, the Press-Democrat reported.
Sonoma County draws about 7 million tourists per year.
Sonoma County Tourism, as it's called, has redesigned its website: sonomasneakaway.com.
Odds are it ranks slightly higher than 18 millionth.