Today’s prospective student audience lives online. They’ll spend most of their time there during their college search, and this includes your website. Unfortunately, 50% of Gen Z students will leave your website if it doesn’t anticipate what they need. In other words, simply having one isn’t enough; it needs to exceed your audience’s expectations. These four tips can help you transform your website into the ultimate admissions marketing tool.

1. Turn your website into an informational hub

For most students, including first-year students and returning ones, a university’s website is the most important source of information.

The solution is this: turn your website into an all-in-one informational hub. Make it the home for everything your audiences need to know, from marketing language to functional information that can help them get crucial and timely answers. You can even create audience-specific pages for incoming students, returning students, and non-traditional students to customize the college admissions marketing experience as needed.

2. Invest in a chatbot for your website

chatbot C3D animation

Modern audiences, especially high school students, expect instant responses. It’s no surprise, then, that the chatbot market in higher education has expanded dramatically in recent years. In fact, one study highlighted “explosive growth” for chatbot technologies in higher ed.

Installing a chatbot on your website can accomplish multiple goals at once. First, it offers a more attractive communication channel to students who would prefer not to email or call. It can also become crucial for providing comprehensive information for all students, allowing you to build a database of answers for every possible question without massive staffing investments.

3. Include pop-up forms to create follow-up opportunities

An effective website that’s both an informational hub and provides chatbot help likely results in high traffic rates from your target audience. Your ability to convert that traffic into prospects in your database for more personalized follow-up will be crucial. After all, 73% of lower-income students who received personalized text nudges enrolled in the college that sent them.

To turn traffic into conversions, consider strategically placed pop-up forms. The more relevant these forms are, the better. For example, a form on your virtual tour or visit pages can prompt students to sign up for a visit. Also, a form on your list of programs page can invite students to learn more about their program of interest.

4. Personalize the experience for your website visitors

student looking at website

Pop-up forms are a great start for admissions marketing. But not every student will be willing to provide their information. In fact, 33% of applicants don’t even reveal their identities before they apply to your school. And yet, for these so-called stealth applicants, personalization matters just as much.

Provide a natural path through your website, like offering up your virtual tour or campus map after they’ve seen your visit pages. You can also use the knowledge that a student recently visited a specific page, or the device and location they visited, to serve up more personalized content.

Optimize your website to maximize your college admissions marketing game

In short, your website is the hub around which most of your admissions and recruitment marketing efforts should revolve. Building your audience is vital if you’re looking to get more applicants via your admissions marketing efforts.

When optimized, your website becomes a powerful tool that can get your students’ attention. It transforms initial attention into applications and class registrations. Virtual tours and maps, like the ones offered by Concept3D, can become an integrated part of the larger online experience your students will get to enjoy.

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