Your school or district website is the likely place where students, parents and community members will get their first impressions of you. In fact, your website is likely to be the place for second and third impressions as well. Oftentimes, users will visit your website more frequently than they will visit your campus or call you. With this in mind, there are a few areas you will want to pay attention to on your website to ensure that you are making the best impression possible.
What Makes You Special?
Visitors will come to your website to learn more about your school and who you are. Use an area of your home page to call out what makes your school different than all the rest. Illustrate the experience students will have and highlight what sets you apart. Yes, you are competing for families to choose your school.
Where Can Viewers Get More Info?
Sometimes it’s the simple things that have the most impact. The goal of your website is to encourage parents and community members to become engaged. Don’t make them search for your contact info. Put it somewhere on the home page that is easy for them to spot.
What is the Student Population Like?
Many new students and families may visit your website to determine if the school is a good fit for them. Show parents and their children that they will fit right in by using photos and videos of students enjoying their experience at your schools. This will demonstrate that fitting is is just as easy as 1, 2, 3.
Is the Overall Website Intuitive?
Users won’t simply stay on your home page. They’ll browse around and check out other pages on your website. But since the home page is likely where they’ll start, make sure the website is navigable. Place menus and toolbars in areas that makes the user experience intuitive so the browsing experience is not frustrating.
Is There a Search Box (That Works)?
Again, although users may start on your home page, there are likely other pages they’re interested in viewing. Use a prominent search bar to give users an option to search for topics they can’t find. And make sure the website search actually turns up relevant results.