Is your website difficult and costly to update? It’s time for an update
Does your school need a new website?
How do you know when your school website needs an upgrade? After all, does it really matter if your school website looks like it was built in 2005, when Facebook was still called The Facebook?
Well, the answer is yes, it does. It matters because your school website is the hub of your school’s branding and marketing. It’s a navigation point for prospective parents, pupils, and staff, and a core hub of information for your current students. For people who’ve never even seen your school, your school website can tell them everything they need to know: what the building looks like, what your ethos is, who your staff are, and how best to get in touch with you.
In short, your school website connects you to your local community. And an old school website gives the impression that your school is similarly stuck in a time warp. A new school website, however, speaks of the care you put into your school, your pupils, and your team.
Why is it so important to have a school website?
These days, having an up-to-date school website is absolutely critical. Gone are the days of searching for schools in the yellow pages. Now, schools need a website that ranks highly in a Google search and appeals to both regular users and visitors.
Because you’re so familiar with your school and its website, it can be easy to forget that your school website serves as an introduction and provides visitors with their first impression of your school. And even once visitors have turned into regular users, either as parents, pupils, or staff members, your school website becomes a hub of information.
This means your school website has two main functions, to attract and to inform. To achieve these two goals, it needs to be easy to use, well laid out, nicely designed, and also honest. Essentially, there is no point in having a school website that presents your school inaccurately – but that doesn’t mean you can’t shout about what makes you stand out. In fact, your school website is exactly the place to do that – don’t wait for pupils to enrol to show them why your school is the best place for them, tell them why from their first glance.
5 reasons why your school might need a new website
- It’s costly or difficult to update
If you want to update your school’s website with new information, where do you go? Do you have to ask whoever built the website to code it in for you, which might be expensive? Or is there only one person in the school who has access to your website’s content management system (CMS)?
Schools today need a website that teachers and key stakeholders can update for themselves – quickly and easily, and whenever they need to. Only then can they offer up-to-date, accurate and relevant information for all website visitors.
- You’re looking to rebrand
Maybe your school has undergone significant changes in recent years. You’ve got a new headteacher, your buildings have undergone renovation, or you’ve formed part of a multi-academy trust. Or maybe it’s just time for a change. Rebranding your school can be a good opportunity to leave the past behind and bring every part of your school, including your website, into the present.
But remember, 94% of first impressions are based on the design of your website. And rebranding without
- It doesn’t reflect your ethos
When it comes to schools, these days parents have plenty of options. Naturally, they want their children to go to successful schools, so how do they work out which school is best for their child? They window shop online.
This is especially true of families that are moving to a new area. Researching local schools online is the best way for parents new to the area to find out what each school is all about. But if your school website doesn’t reflect your values and ethos, or if it doesn’t reflect an ethos at all, your school is going to get passed over for the schools with websites that do.
- You can’t integrate it with other software
As well as being easy to update and navigate, it’s important that your school website ‘talks to’ your other communications systems, to save time, reduce the admin burden for staff, and deliver a strong return on your investment.
One easy and cost-effective way to do this is by using the same provider for both your website and your other software. With the right integrated systems in place, schools can then provide updates across their website, parent apps, social media, emails and more, at the click of a button. Helping to improve parental engagement levels, and connect the website seamlessly to the rest of school .
- It’s difficult to navigate
If someone can’t find what they need on your website in a reasonable time, it’s going to cause you a problem. Either by creating traffic in your emails or phone lines from people who should be able to get what they need on your website, or by forcing users to take their search to another school’s website.
It is therefore essential for schools to regularly assess their website content, and put themselves in the shoes of their online visitors. Is there too little content, or too much? Can people easily find the answers they need, or do they have to wade through lots of other information first? It may be that you need to organise your content, and implement a better website structure, to help make things simpler to navigate.
How can ReachMoreParents help?
With our websites for schools, we can ensure that your school’s ethos and brand come across in an instant - and your achievements and approach are hard to ignore. With eye-catching, professional designs, our websites make it easy for parents to find key information and gain an insight into everyday school life.
Plus, by syncing your website with ReachMoreParents, you can:
- Publish your school calendar and easily keep it up-to-date.
- Post important notices, ensuring they are front and centre for parents.
- Automatically update your newsfeed across your website and parent app.
- Upload policies and documents with a simple drag-and-drop feature.
- Share news direct to your social media accounts.
So, whether it’s a website for your primary school, secondary school, multi-academy trust, or independent school, click here to find out how ReachMoreParents by Weduc can help.