- Research from higher ed web development company KDG spotlights ways college websites turn away prospective students.
- Among the approaches higher ed institutions should avoid: Being too tedious instead of opting for short, digestible info chunks; requiring form fills for additional information; weighing down the home page without focusing on priorities; using stock images and sounding too clichéd.
- KDG's research shows overall unique visitors to college websites failing to meet students' expectations fell 30-40% over the past admissions cycle, eCampus News reports.
Colleges and universities face a much more competitive playing field when it comes to recruiting today's prospective students. Not only are they looking at a generation that is smaller in numbers than the one preceding it, but these students are much more critical of an institution's digital presence. A generation that has experienced social media almost since it first began using the internet is likely to prefer, for example, information presented in shorter chunks.
But they're also more skeptical of marketing efforts aimed at them. Though eCampus News notes that they have, on average, a 7th grade reading level, they can recognize recycled buzzwords across sites and are better reached with stories of what sets a campus apart.
Also worth considering beyond the tips provided: Adopting a mobile-first approach. More students and parents are likely to opt in favor of accessing a campus' site via their smartphones or tablets, rather than their laptops.