We can’t quite believe that our website Info4Migrants turned 1 at the start of this month. What initially started out 3 years ago as a European project to develop an online resource for careers advisors has evolved into a extensive portal that is being used by migrants, advisors and other support workers on a daily basis!
We are very proud of the impact which the website has had over the last year, with several support workers telling us that it is now their go-to resource when they are in need of information on migrant rights and the process of integrating into the UK.
What’s more, the usage figures back this up, demonstrating the website’s wide reach and loyal base of users. However they also throw up some surprising titbits about how people are interacting with Info4Migrants…
UK visitors outrank other countries
Perhaps unsurprisingly given that the majority of our promotion of Info4migrants has been focussed on UK professionals and their migrant clients, most visitors to the site are logging on from the UK. Yet, this is not to the exclusion of traffic from other countries.
As the map above shows, the spread of visitors reaches across the world, showing that different types of migrants, with different backgrounds and motivations are making use of the site. Indeed, Info4Migrants has received hits from over 120 different countries, with Romania, France, Algeria and the USA joining the UK in our top 5 visitor locations.
We did not produce the site with any particular migrant group in mind – we just wanted to help as many people coming to the UK as possible and these figures would seem to suggest this is something we have achieved!
Translated pages prove a draw
Whilst the majority of the site’s visitors are from the UK, this does not mean they are always viewing our English-language content. An example of this can be seen in the pages which people are entering the site through. Only 3 of the top 10 landing pages for the website are in English (including the homepage), whilst there are 5 pages in Romanian in the list and 2 in Arabic.
We always wanted the website to be accessible to a wide range of people and this is what drove the decision to translate the content into 5 of the most common migrant languages. However we never expected that these translated pages would in many cases prove more popular than the English originals!
Information on British culture is the most popular
Another surprise is the sections of the site that are being accessed. We believe that cultural understanding is a key part of successful integration and this is why we added a wide variety of pages to the site – from information on status and rights to explanations on British sporting interests.
Yet we expected practical information about entry rights, finding a job etc. to be the most popular pages, with the others adding value to our users’ understanding of life in the UK. However this has proved to be far from the case.
Again when looking at the top 10 pages that people use to access the site, only one, the English-language page on indefinite leave to remain, covers rights etc. Instead, 2 of the Romanian pages and 1 of those in Arabic deal with obtaining a driving licence in the UK – a topic we never thought would prove to be so popular. Another Romanian page in the top 10 explains the different qualifications obtained at British secondary schools, whilst pages on the British political system (Arabic), British dialects (Romanian) and festivals (Romanian) complete the list.
What this shows is that people are using the site to really get under the skin of life in Britain, as they struggle to find accessible, easy to understand information on the everyday aspects of building a life in a new country elsewhere. We are delighted that Info4Migrants helps to fill this gap and moving forward this sort of information is something we would love to include more of.
Since the European funding for the website came to an end, we have not been able to dedicate as much time as we would have liked to developing new content for the site. However we are continuing to keep everything up-to-date and are pleased to see that such a diverse range of people are finding Info4Migrants useful. Our aim was to make a small difference and help people build a successful life in the UK and it would seem that we have achieved this.