Your school website is an essential tool for establishing your presence online. Not only is it an informational resource for pupils and parents alike and a good place to post relevant updates but it’s also a converting tool.
Most families are going to check out the website of a school they’re thinking of enrolling to, and your content is likely to be what convinces them. Well-written content provides an image of authority and professionalism, so how do you make sure yours is up to scratch?
Format your content well
Formatting your content well is essential. You have a limited amount of time to convince your readers to read to the bottom. Furthermore, some of them are going to be visiting pages to find specific information and won’t be interested in the rest of it. Here are a few formatting tips to ensure you capture and hold their attention before they lose interest:
- Keep paragraphs snappy, try to make them 3-5 lines with spaces in between them
- Use sub headers for each section so it’s easier to scan through to the most relevant sections and to create a sense of order
- Use images and videos to break up large chunks of text if they help present the information more efficiently or provide context
- For lists of facts, stats, and tips, use bullet points to make them much easier to read
There are more ways to sharpen up your formatting, but these few are enough to help you make your content much more readable and engaging.
Avoiding the jargon
When used sparsely enough, jargon can be helpful when it comes to providing a sense of authority and professionalism. However, it’s often overused which has the opposite effect. Too much jargon is alienating and confusing, meaning that visitors aren’t likely to finish what they are reading.
If a jargon word or term is essential to the content, then make sure that it’s explained in full to the reader so that the rest of it makes a lot more sense. In general, however, try to be light on the jargon. The aim is to make things readable so if there is a simpler or more broadly known term, stick with it.
Write for your audience
You’re not writing in a vacuum, you’re writing to engage your visitors. In most cases, this means writing to the parents and families of pupils or potential pupils. However, you may also be writing to pupils alone with some pages.
As such, you should make sure that your content is specifically focused on and suited to those readers. Consider the content and whether it’s all really going to be of interest to that audience. If you can spot paragraphs or entire subsections that aren’t relevant to them, then you should consider putting them somewhere else or removing them altogether.
Focus on what your audience has to gain, not who you are
Some of your content pages are going to be relatively perfunctory. They’re going to give information and not much more. However, all of your pages can be improved by focusing on what the benefits are rather than who you are or the basic facts of what you provide.
Focus on the offer that you’re making to the reader. Consider what puts you in a unique position and how that’s going to improve the lives of students and families rather than sticking to the strict definition of it all.
Give them actionable prompts
Your content is there to engage with and inform the visitors. But it is also a stepping stone to converting visitors, encouraging them to enrol in the school. As such, if you have truly engaged with them and captured their interest, you shouldn’t simply let it go.
A call-to-action is an actionable prompt that encourages your visitors to take an extra step after they have finished engaging with a piece of content. It can encourage them to do anything from getting in touch about enrolment to highlighting the other informational resources available on your website.
Some of your pages will have much clearer objectives than others and including a call-to-action simply makes it easier to reach those objectives.
Is it time to sharpen up your school site’s content?
When it comes to the meat of the content, what you’re actually writing about, then your expertise is essential when it comes to providing the right information. The tips above, however, will ensure that it’s written and presented in the way most likely to engage with, inform, and even convert your visitors.