ZuBlu partnered with Digital Butter with the vision of creating a business that combined their passions of diving, underwater photography and sustainability, while driving to create an easier experience for like-minded travellers all around the world who were looking for these types of holidays. They were aiming to centralise a completely decentralised segment of the travel market; booking diving holidays in South East Asia.
We needed to identify a platform that was flexible enough to allow ZuBlu to control content (particularly their Insights/Blog pages for SEO that was central to their early strategy) but would also allow our developers to build on top of it in the future and eventually integrate with another platform to power bookings.
This led us to Craft CMS! The features that are baked into the platform as standard gave ZuBlu the control of the content that they required, and the customisation that Craft allows in development was perfect for our team and for growing the site alongside the company.
We used a range of plugins for this build to improve the basic functionality and make the management of the platform as easy as possible for ZuBlu, such as Form Builder, Imager, and SEOmatic. The largest one was custom-built collaboratively between Butter and their in-house team on the Laravel tool. The flexibility of Craft has allowed us to implement this and allowed the ZuBlu company to grow as a result.
The main challenge was to help them grow in the market with a startup strategy but a platform that reflected a more established company. This resulted in a beautiful UI design (using their amazing assets!) with a considered and effortless experience for users. The emphasis on building a stable and technical platform also allowed them to take the product to market and secure multiple rounds of venture funding.
ZuBlu is now leading the market for diving holidays in SEA and we are continuing to work with their team to build a full booking engine that will integrate with the Craft platform and allow them to grow further.
The results have been huge for ZuBlu, and not just in a data/statistical view. ZuBlu has raised over $1million in seed funding to date and continues to generate investor interest.
They have gone on to build out their own in-house technical team that is now supported by us at Digital Butter, we’re continuing to work together to constantly improve users experience on the platform and we have successfully implemented a full booking experience for both their customers and their resort partners - getting hundreds of resorts to formalise their booking systems so they align with the ZuBlu vision of a centralised industry is perhaps the most impressive feat of all!