Everyone knows the importance of a website, it is where your prospects go to find out about your organisation, and it's your public-facing virtual 'shop window'. But what if your college's website is not generating the leads it should be?
Here are 5 reasons why your digital marketing efforts may not be converting students:
1) Your website is not focused on capturing new leads
This is very common in education, your website may be the best looking website around, it may be jam-packed full of information and beautiful photos of your campus, but if you have no lead-generation strategy in place you are missing potentially thousands of opportunities to convert. Imagine yourself as a stranger, visiting your college's website for the first time... you learn about the courses on offer but what next? If the website does not drive visitors down specific paths to conversion, your visitors may not know what is expect of them and leave your website. Look at each page and check it has clear call-to-actions and lead capture forms, make sure you are telling your visitors "what next".
2) You are not attracting the right people to your site in the first place
Look at your wider marketing efforts, particularly any digital advertising, who are you targeting and where are you sending them? If you are using Google Ads to drive traffic to your site, make sure your target keywords are sending traffic to the right pages. If someone searches for a specific course, and you drop them on the home page, you run the risk of them leaving rather than searching for what it is they were interested in. The same goes for social media advertising - check what content is being targeted at who, are you sending the right people to the right places? If you aren't sure which pages to send traffic to, consider using campaign specific landing pages aimed at capturing new leads from specific adverts.
3) Your competitors are appearing higher in search engine results
If you are in a competitive landscape, your competitor colleges may simply be performing better on search engines than you. A regular SEO Audit will help you to monitor how you are performing against competitors. Consider your keywords and content carefully, review an audit of backlinks sending traffic to your site, and remember not to overlook on-page optimisation such as adding alt-text to images and making sure your meta descriptions are relevant and concise.
4) Your content is not what your prospects want to see
By monitoring your website traffic in tools like Google Analytics and HubSpot, you can learn about the behaviours that prospects are taking on your website. If you are guiding people to your admissions page of your site, but this page has a high bounce rate, it may be that the information on that page is not what your visitors expect to see. Take a look at what content is performing well and do more of that.
Frequently, content that answers a prospect's question will outperform pages with reams of information that demand lots of scrolling. Consider planning your website, blog and social content in advance to answer the questions that your prospects have, share your information in many different formats (web pages, blog posts, infographics...). Use our free content planner to help.
5) Your admissions process is complicated or unclear
In education, the moment that the admissions process begins is when your prospect is most engaged with your college. Make sure that your communications with prospects are timely, relevant and personalised. Stand out from your competitors with personalised video emails, streamline any clunky processes to remove any sticking points that may frustrate prospects, and make sure that every step of your admissions process is clear and well communicated. Using a Knowledge Base to handle admissions FAQs is a great way to make sure prospects have the answers they need, which will help with your SEO too.
Did you know... HubSpot can help with all of the above? Focus on improving your conversion from stranger to student. Lead capture, ads, content, SEO, email, automation and much more - all in one platform.
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